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Three confirmed dead in N Collins plane crash

Posted at 10:14 AM, Sep 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-26 13:22:07-04

UPDATE: The Erie County Sheriff's Office has identified the three killed in a North Collins plane collision as Kathleen and Richard Walker of Eden; both were 69 years old, and 60 year-old Paul Rosiek from Hamburg.

The Sheriff's Office says the planes left the Hamburg airport in a group, headed to St. Mary's, Pennsylvania. After preliminary accounts, the Sheriff's Office says they believe this was a routine flight a group of aviators made often.

It's also believed the three killed in the crash knew each other. 

The NTSB is investigating the crash. They're gathering debris and wreckage from three different crash sites in North Collins to take to a secure hangar in Delaware. NTSB senior air safety investigator, Robert Gretz, says a full report will take months to complete because investigators will analyze crash debris, pilot flying history, weather and plane maintenance reports.

Gretz says the planes were not in radio communication with air traffic control because they were not required to be. If the planes had been in the city of Buffalo's airspace, then they would have been required to communicate with Buffalo traffic control.

According to reports, one of the planes was located near School Street, which is now back open.

Reports also indicate 'heavy wreckage' with this crash.

Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board have been notified, and the Erie County Sheriff's Office is securing the scene for them.

Investigators say the planes took off from Hamburg Airport and were heading to St. Mary's, Pennsylvania.

7 Eyewitness News has a crew on the scene, and will provide updated information as it becomes available.