Investigators work the scene of a plane crash at Collegedale Municipal Airport on Saturday, June 11, 2016 in Collegedale, Tenn

This is a developing story. This story was updated at 6:30 p.m. with additional information.

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Plane crashes while attempting to land at Collegedale Municipal Airport


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Previous crashes at the Collegedale Airport:

September 2014: Don Edens was killed when his plane crashed in a nearby field as a result of equipment failure.

March 2013: Local resident David Richardson, 77, fell out of an aircraft and was killed after the canopy came loose in flight. The instructor pilot landed the plane.

December 2012: Clarence Andrews, 82, of Signal Mountain, crashed his home-built aircraft and died.

December 2004: A single-engine plane crashed but the lone pilot walked away.

December 2004: Five leaders of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Tennessee and Georgia died when their twin-engine plane crashed just after takeoff.

Two people are dead and two others injured after a single engine plane crashed near the Collegedale Municipal Airport early Saturday afternoon.

Responders worked quickly to remove two severely injured people and two bodies from the crumpled husk of a single-engine plane that crashed while trying to land. The front half of the plane was obliterated by the impact, and as responders treated the occupants, they stepped over the twisted remnants of the cockpit and wings.

Investigators held up white sheets to shield the grisly scene from spectators.

The two survivors, one critically injured, were airlifted by UT Lifestar 5 and Life Force to the Erlanger trauma unit. Nothing was released about the identities of the people in the plane or the extent of the survivors' injuries.

Tonya Sadler, a public information officer for the Collegedale Police Department, described the plane as "transient" and said the crash occurred at approximately 12:50 p.m.

The Collegedale airport does not record radio traffic between the tower and pilots, but archived recordings with the Chattanooga tower just after the crash shed some light on the immediate aftermath.

Minutes after the crash, an unidentified pilot radioed the tower and said calmly, "We have something to tell you. There was an accident in Collegedale, just letting you know. It's closed."

The controller radioed back, "Is the aircraft on the runway?"

"It's just off the runway, but it's a bad accident."

"Did it look like there was emergency response en route or at the airport?"

"There were a lot of emergency vehicles on the runway, yes."

On the ground, squad cars, ambulances and firetrucks littered the runway, lights flashing. Collegedale police officers helped airport staff shut down the entire runway for several hours in anticipation of a required investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Employees at the airport declined to comment on the crash, which isn't the first fatal accident near there.

In the most recent crash, in September 2014, Don Edens was killed after his plane crashed in a nearby field as a result of equipment failure.

Alone in the craft and just moments before impact, Edens radioed air traffic control in Chattanooga and said, "I've got oil all over my windshield and am going to need some help for line-up."

After being redirected from the Chattanooga runway to Collegedale, he said,"Looks like we're not going to make it."

Contact staff writer Emmett Gienapp at or 423-757-6731.

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