A press conference was held on Sunday by an investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board.
DEKALB COUNTY, Georgia – A small plane that crashed at DeKalb-Peachtree Airport on Friday was supposed to fly to Houston and full of fuel, a federal investigator said Sunday, resulting in the fire that burned the plane in minutes.
A clear cause has not yet been determined.
The National Transportation Safety Board announced its investigation into the crash, in which all four people on board were killed.
NTSB investigator Daniel Boggs said the aircraft was recently converted from a Continental engine to a Rolls-Royce turbine engine. However, he did not state that the modification was suspected to be the cause of the crash.
The modification was carried out by O&N Aircraft Modifications, a Californian company.
Boggs said federal investigators would move the remains of the aircraft to a safe facility and dissect them in the coming days, going through the systems and engine as much as possible. But that would be difficult, he said, because the aircraft was “badly damaged by fire”.
The investigator said he could not reveal the names of the victims, who have not yet been publicly disclosed. He said he believed the flight was a personal, not a business trip.
Boggs said the investigation will look into everything from the aircraft’s weight to its service history to the pilot’s qualifications and even the weather, which was clear on Friday.
The Federal Aviation Administration confirmed Friday that the aircraft was a single-engine Cessna 210 and said the pilot “was flying out of the airport when the crash occurred”.
RELATED: Four dead after a small plane crashed at DeKalb-Peachtree Airport, firefighters say
The aircraft was caught in a fire shortly after the crash.
11Alive’s Crash Clark reported that witnesses said a single-engine Cessna took off, didn’t get much altitude, and crashed again.
A witness, Keith Berry, told 11Alive’s Doug Richards that he was photographing planes landing and taking off when he saw this.
“I was shooting a plane that was on the runway and then you see the plane bouncing and tipping over, and I put the camera down very quickly because … I couldn’t believe what I was seeing,” he said . “It turned and it burned so quickly. I never saw it come down from heaven. I thought they wanted to take off and not land. “
He said it only took a few minutes for the fire to engulf the aircraft and burn the wings and other parts.
“The heat was so hot it just burned everything,” he said.
Flights and normal operations at the airport were resumed on Friday evening.