- Associated Press - Saturday, May 28, 2016

TUPELO, Miss. (AP) - A preliminary report by the National Transportation Safety Board into a plane crash that killed four people does not point to a specific cause for the crash and says the pilot reported smoke in the cockpit shortly after taking off.

The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reported on Friday (https://bit.ly/1VndROJ ) that NTSB’s preliminary report on the May 16 crash did not say if an exhaust pipe that fell off the plane contributed to the crash.

The report says investigators found an exhaust pipe missing “from the exhaust side of the turbocharger.” The report say however an examination of the engine “did not reveal any other preexisting mechanical anomalies” with the plane.

All four people onboard were killed when the Beechcraft Bonanza A36TC went down in a wooded area about a half-mile north of the Tupelo Regional Airport runway.

The victims were pilot Henry Jackson, 75; his wife Gwynn Groggel, 70; Charles Torti, 69; and Carrie Torti, 59. The two couples were all from Kerrville, Texas.

The report said the plane was headed to Williamsburg-Whitley County Airport in Williamsburg, Kentucky.

The NTSB report says the pilot reported smoke in the cockpit shortly after taking off, and told the air traffic control tower they needed to return to the airport.

Witnesses said the plane made a left turn back toward the airport and also reported seeing smoke and flames coming from the plane before it crashed in a wooded area a half-mile from the airport.

The exhaust pipe was found by airport workers on the runway.

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Information from: Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, https://djournal.com

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