Hancock County

Body of pilot recovered in Hancock County plane crash

One person died in a small airplane crash near Diamondhead Airport on Friday morning, officials say.

Hancock County Sheriff Ricky Adam said the plane was believed to be a Cessna. He said the pilot, who has not yet been identified, died in the crash.

Coroner Jim Faulk said Friday afternoon he was waiting on dental records to make a positive identification because the man, believed to be about 69, was badly burned.

Diamondhead fire Chief Jerry Dubuisson said the pilot was a local resident who took off around 6:30 a.m. to fly around the area. He said there was one witness to the crash. Dubuisson said that there was no report of any radio mayday given before the plane went down. The pilot was alone in the plane, and his body has been recovered.

The plane crashed into trees just north of Interstate 10 near a clearing for power lines. One of the power lines was wrapped around the plane, causing a delay before fire crews could move in to put out the burning plane. A Coast Electric crew secured the line allowing fire crews and Faulk to investigate the wreckage.

The crash site is less than a mile from the Diamondhead Airport runway on the south side of I-10 that is used by Diamondhead residents. Several residents live along the tarmac with their planes parked at their homes.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board have been contacted and will be a part of the investigation.

Emergency crews continue to work at the scene near mile marker 16 of Interstate 10, but it is not causing any traffic problems.