4 dead in plane crash near Monroe airport
Four people are dead after a plane crashed near the Monroe Municipal Airport Sunday afternoon, according to the Green County Sheriff's Office.
The plane went down into an open field north of Monroe Municipal Airport. It then crashed into a wooded area immediately north of the open field, making impact with some trees at approximately 12 p.m., according to the Green County Sheriff's Office.
The plane was on fire and fully engulfed, according to first responders on scene. The Monroe Fire Department extinguished the flames.
The pilot had filed a flight plan out of Chicago and listed four people on board. There were no survivors, according to the Green County Sheriff's Office.
A witness who lives near the area told authorities they saw the plane on fire while it was still in the sky. Green County Sheriff Mark Rohloff said the crash was caused by mechanical issues.
"It is fortunate that the plane descending was witnessed, and that there was apparently some loss of power, loss of altitude, and there was fire that was observed," Rohloff said.
According to Rohloff, the victims were related and were headed to a family event in Monroe. He believes all of the victims were adults.
Rohloff said, "As we understand, one of the occupants was the pilot's daughter, and possibly some grandchildren as well."
The area is secured with no traffic allowed and the Monroe-Sylvester road is closed. A no-fly zone was also ordered.
Responding to the scene were Green County Sheriff's Office deputies, Monroe, Juda, Monticello, Evansville and Brodhead Fire Departments, Green County EMS, the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board.
This crash remains under investigation with the Sheriff’s Office, FAA and NTSB. This story will be updated as more information comes in.