August 24, 2008 in Nation/World

Utah plane crash kills 10

Passengers were providing skin cancer treatment in remote area
By PAUL FOY Associated Press
Associated Press photo

Burned wreckage of the small plane lies on a hillside northwest of Moab, Utah, on Saturday.
(Full-size photo)

MOAB, Utah – A small plane crashed and burned shortly after takeoff, killing everyone on board, including the pilot and nine people who had spent the day working at a skin cancer clinic in a remote community.

The twin-engine Beech King Air A-100 crashed shortly after takeoff Friday evening from Canyonlands Field airport, 18 miles northwest of Moab. It hit the ground in nearby hills, flattened and exploded on impact, authorities said.

Emergency responders rushed to the site to search for possible survivors and fight a brush fire apparently sparked by the crash.

The wreckage was little more than a pile of twisted, blackened shards of metal. Most of the debris on the otherwise-barren stretch of land was closely clustered and marked by yellow tape. One propeller was thrown about 20 feet from its engine.

“It’s just weird. I mean, something happened to make this guy veer left off the runway,” Grand County Sheriff James Nyland said.

National Transportation Safety Board investigator Tealeye Cornejo said she couldn’t see how anyone could have survived the crash.

“The fire was so intense, there’s not a lot of (the plane) left,” she said.

Cornejo said investigators were trying to determine if the plane caught fire before or after it hit the ground.

On board were employees of a Southwest Skin and Cancer/Red Canyon Aesthetics & Medical Spa, a dermatology company based in Cedar City, 200 miles to the west, that traveled to remote areas to provide treatment for skin cancer and other ailments where it might otherwise be unavailable.

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