Plane crash claims lives of three local farmers
14 September 2012 | Reveshni Moodley
Three Newcastle farmers died yesterday afternoon when their light aircraft crashed outside Cato Ridge.
Statements issued by ER24 spokeswoman, Vanessa Jackson, said that the crash occured on September 13 at around 5.30pm.
"Paramedics from Durban and Pietermaritzburg immediately set off to find the scene, which was explained as being in the Valley of a Thousand Hills," she said.
It took paramedics close to an hour to reach the crash site, she added, as they had to walk up the mountain through dense bush. The bodies of the victims were burnt beyond recognition, continued Ms Jackson.
National media coverage explained that witnesses had reported seeing black smoke coming from the plane shortly before it crashed in dense bush and mountainous terrain in the vicinity of Nagle Dam.
The plane, which was believed to have been a Beechcraft F33 Bonanza, was apparently on its way to Newcastle after taking off from the Pietermaritzburg airport.
However, it has been confirmed that the three victims were from Newcastle, and were well known farmers in the community.
Updates to follow.