UPDATE: Names released of plane crash victims
The Livingston County Sheriff's office has released the names of the two people that died in a plane crash on Tuesday when a small plane crashed into a field on the side of the runway,.
James Tafralian, age 68 from Webberville MI
Philip Henry Colmer, age 64 from Chelsea MI
The sheriff's office is saying that the pilot was the 68-year-old and the passenger was from a company that owned the plane.
It happened around 11:20 a.m. in Howell Township at Spencer J. Hardy Airport.
The crash happened in the area of Tooley and West Highland roads, just east of I-96 in Howell Township.
Sheriff Murphy from Livingston County says that after a preliminary investigation they know a a single engine 4 passenger Aero Commander was attempting to land when it crashed.
The AP is reporting that the Federal Aviation Administration gave a conflicting account, saying the plane was taking off when it crashed.
The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.
The Livingston Daily Press & Argus reports that a British company, Southern Aircraft Consultancy Inc., appears to have registered the aircraft with the FAA. The company helps non-citizens register their planes in the U.S.
The pilot is said to own the mechanic service at the airport called Livingston Aviation Services.
The sheriff's office added that the pilot was a well-experienced pilot and often took the planes for a test ride after he worked on them.
Deputies from the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office, Howell Area Fire, and Livingston County EMS, responded to the Livingston County Spencer J Hardy Airport for the crash.
News 10 talked to a man who lives nearby who heard the crash happen.
"It sounded like a normal takeoff and then it just went quiet very quickly," said Steve Ripper. "I came over to get some gas at the seven-eleven and a woman there told me she saw the plane wobble in the air and then crash nose-first into the ground."
The airport is now open.