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Last Updated: Sunday, 11 February 2007, 18:40 GMT
Three killed in French air crash
Shoreham Airport
The plane took off from Shoreham Airport heading for Cannes
The bodies of a family have been found in the wreckage of a light aircraft that took off from Shoreham Airport, in West Sussex, and crashed in France.

The twin-engine Piper PA 34 Seneca aircraft left the airport on Saturday for Cannes, in the French Riviera.

Wreckage of the plane was found in the Isere region of the French Alps, 1,960 metres (6,430ft) up in the Vercors.

The couple and their child are believed to have been from the US originally, but had been living in the UK.

French officials said an American passport belonging to the pilot was found with the plane.

Snow storm

The Foreign Office confirmed one body was that of a US citizen.

The manager of Shoreham Airport, John Haffenden, told the BBC the aircraft was owned by the pilot and had regularly flown from Shoreham.

Gilles Barsacq, secretary general of the prefecture in the Alpine Isere region of France, said the plane had lost control in a snow storm as it flew over the Alps.

He said the pilot contacted air traffic control on Saturday afternoon to say he was in trouble, but the twin-engine plane disappeared from radar screens moments later.

The wreckage was discovered on Sunday morning following a search operation involving up to 100 men and five helicopters which lasted through the night.


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