- Associated Press - Thursday, January 5, 2017

GURDON, Ark. (AP) - Federal authorities said two people were killed when a single-engine airplane crashed Thursday afternoon near Gurdon in southwestern Arkansas while en route from Texas to North Carolina.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Tony Molinaro said the two killed when the Cessna 400 crashed were apparently the only people aboard when it went down about 75 miles southwest of Little Rock.

The names of the victims were not immediately released.

Molinaro said the FAA will send investigators to the crash site and will work in coordination with the National Transportation Safety Board, which he said will lead the investigation.

Molinaro said the plane was heading from McKinney, Texas, to Franklin, North Carolina.

The online flight tracking site FlightAware.com showed only one flight plan between the two communities Thursday. According to its data, the flight departed about 11:45 a.m. and reached an altitude of just below 25,000 feet. In the five minutes before the crash, it dropped about 5,000 feet before the data stopped over southwestern Arkansas.

Skies were overcast in the area at the time of the crash, with a temperature of 38 degrees at Arkadelphia, the nearest weather station.

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