Five people killed in light aircraft crashes

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The Independent Online
Three separate accidents involving light aircraft claimed the lives of five people over the weekend.

Three separate accidents involving light aircraft claimed the lives of five people over the weekend.

A man and woman died when their Cessna 152 came down in a field shortly after take-off from Stoughton near Leicester on Saturday. More than 40 firefighters used specialist equipment to deal with a large aviation fuel spill.

Another two people were killed when a twin-engined plane crashed on Osea island off the coast of Essex on Saturday. Witnesses reported seeing the plane, a privately registered Piper Commanche, doing aerobatics. The clear-up was hampered by high tides, which cover the mile-long causeway linking the island to the mainland.

The 330-acre island, in the Blackwater estuary east of Chelmsford, was put up for sale last year for £6m. It has a private landing strip, a 10-bedroomed manor house, 16 cottages and its own electricity supply.

The four fatalities were expected to be identified today.

In the third accident, also on Saturday, a man died when his propeller-driven Second World War Sea Fury overturned on landing at Sywell airport in Northamptonshire. Paul Morgan, 52, from Brixworth, Northamptonshire, was director of a firm that supplied engines to the McLaren Formula One racing team.

The Air Accident Investigation Branch has begun inquiries into the three crashes. Some 30,000 people hold private pilot's licences in Britain.

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