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Saturday, September 4, 2010

Nine killed in plane crash in New Zealand near Fox Glacier

Nine people were killed when a skydive plane crashed at Fox Glacier airport in New Zealand including an 18-year-old Australian man from Victoria.

Fletcher FU-24-954 operated by Skydive NZ (Facebook)
The 30-year-old former agricultural aircraft, a Fletcher FU-24-954, burst into flames after taking off, just before 1.30pm.

All nine passengers- comprising of New Zealanders and tourists- died in the crash, Stuff.co.nz reports.

"Unfortunately, we will not be skydiving for the rest of the day," said the message on the company Skydive New Zealand's answer phone.

An employee of the company, when contacted, did not comment on the mishap.

While the police are informing the relatives, the age or gender of the deceased has not been confirmed.

The Sunset motel's spokesperson said the town was "devastated" by this accident.

"We've lost five awesome people," she added.

The motel is located near to the airport.

The company, located in the glaciers since 1997, is owned by locals of the town of Fox.

A Fletcher Fixed Wing plane is considered ideal for mountainous regions. ANI

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