By William Moore
CORINTH – A Christmas Eve plane crash in Alcorn County sent four people to the hospital, one with serious injuries.
The plane, piloted by Dr. David Chase of Booneville, had mechanical problems shortly after takeoff Thursday morning. While attempting to return to Roscoe Turner Airport just outside of Corinth, the plane crashed on County Road 504, just southeast of the airport.
“The pilot reported issues and was doing a high bank turn to the right trying to return to the airport but he had to do an emergency forced landing,” said Alcorn County Emergency Management director Ricky Gibens. “His years of experience allowed him to pilot between the power lines and stop just feet from an abandoned house.”
The 2007 Piper PA46 is registered to North Mississippi Pulmonology Clinic in Booneville. The flight plan said the plane was scheduled to take off at 8 a.m. from Corinth with a final destination of Key Largo, Florida.
Gibens said Chase, his wife, daughter and daughter-in-law were heading to Florida to spend Christmas with family. Three of the occupants of the plane were transported to Magnolia Regional Medical Center in Corinth with minor injuries.
“The daughter-in-law was airlifted to a Memphis hospital with a possible head injury,” said Gibens.
While the crash is believed to have been the result of mechanical issues, county and airport officials cordoned off the crash site Thursday while waiting for officials with the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Traffic Safety Board to begin their investigation. The single-engine turboprop plane was last certified in June 2011.