Four bodies found on plane that crashed into school

June 12, 2010 6:18:08 PM PDT
Authorities searching through the wreckage of a small plane that nosedived into an Arizona high school and exploded found four bodies Saturday.

Officials had previously thought only two people were aboard the single-engine Piper that crashed Friday afternoon into a two-story building at the school Friday afternoon in the small eastern Arizona town of Eagar.

Officials were working to identify the bodies, Apache County sheriff's Sgt. Richard Guinn said.

No one was in the building when the plane hit, Guinn said. Classes are out for the summer at the school.

The plane circled the area two or three times before it suddenly crashed into the main building at Round Valley High School at about 2 p.m., Guinn said.

Two hours after the crash, flames were still erupting 20 feet above the building. Crews worked on the blaze overnight, and the building was still smoldering Saturday.

Fire crews from nearly a dozen small towns in the region raced to battle the flames. Officials evacuated homes in neighborhoods east and north of the school.

The school serves about 500 students in Eagar and nearby Springerville and is about 200 miles east of Phoenix. The blaze was contained to the main school building.

National Transportation Safety Board officials were expected at the crash scene Saturday morning to handle the investigation.


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