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Pilot Advised To Divert From Route Before Greensburg Crash

The Piper Mirage crashed when the four in the airplane were on their way back to Greensburg.

Piper Mirage

Photo: Felipe Westin(Flickr)

The Piper Mirage is a luxury, single engine plane with retractable landing gear.

Updated 8:55 a.m. 12/13/12

The National Transportation Safety Board has released preliminary findings about the Dec. 2 plane crash in Decatur County that killed the pilot and all three passengers.

The report shows instruments in the pilot‘s aircraft advised him to divert to the Columbus Airport. Indianapolis air traffic controllers spoke with pilot Don Horan when he was four miles away from landing at the Greensburg Municipal Airport. Horan was flying home from Florida with his wife Barb and Stephen and Denise Butz. It was foggy when the plane went down.

Updated 12:33 p.m. on 12/6/12

The National Transportation Safety Board officials say they found fuel in the fuel lines and that damage to the propeller indicating the airplane was under some sort of power at the time of the crash. NTSB investigator Dan Baker says the plane‘s landing gear was also down.

Baker made the announcement Thursday and said the investigation into the crash that killed Donald and Barbara Horan and Stephen and Denise Butz is still ongoing and could take up to nine months. Meanwhile, funeral services for both couples will be held Friday at Greensburg Community High School.

Original story published 12/3/12:

Four people died in a plane crash  in foggy weather Sunday night near Greensburg. The Greensburg Police Department confirms the victims were two married couples. They were pilot Don and Barb Horan and Stephen and Denise Butz.

The Federal Aviation Administration says the wreckage was found about 1.5 miles south of Greensburg. In an online recording, the FAA says an investigation is ongoing.

“The FAA will be giving the investigation, but the NTSB is the lead agency for the investigation, and only the NTSB can talk about the investigation itself,” the FAA recording said.

FAA reports indicated Horan’s Piper Mirage was scheduled to land at the Greensburg airport at 6:19 p.m. from Fort Walton Beach, Florida but never arrived.

Network Indiana contributed to this report.

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