FAA: Small plane wreckage found in southern Utah

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ST. GEORGE, Utah (AP) -- The Federal Aviation Administration says search crews in southern Utah have found the wreckage of a single-engine plane that crashed after taking off from the Las Vegas area, killing the pilot.

FAA spokesman Ian Gregor says authorities believe only the pilot was on board the Piper Malibu, which departed from the North Las Vegas Airport at 6:30 a.m. Tuesday.

The plane was on its way to Cedar City, Utah, when it disappeared off radar at 7:08 a.m. Gregor says search crews found the burned wreckage Tuesday afternoon in a mountainous area about 20 miles west of St. George, Utah.

Search and rescue crews are on scene right now recovering the body of the pilot. A crew will stay with the wreckage overnight, and a team from the NTSB will arrive Wednesday to investigate what caused the crash.

Authorities do not know the pilot's identity. Washington County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Rob Tersigni says skies were clear at the time of the crash.


Story compiled with contributions from The Associated Press and KSL News

(The Associated Press contributed to this report. Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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