GRANBURY – A team of federal investigators arrived in Granbury Friday morning after a single engine plane crashed, killing both pilot Casey Bussett, 40, of Yukon, Oklahoma, and Chad Hughes, 35, a mechanic from Dublin, Georgia on Thursday, September 24.
It all happened as a high school football game was being played at Granbury High School across the street.
The aircraft was burnt almost beyond recognition except for panels striped like the American flag. Tom Latson, an air safety investigator, described the 1987 model as an “experimental and amateur built” Buzby Mustang II.
It crashed after takeoff, nose diving at the end of the runway of Granbury Regional Airport.
Latson said witnesses reported seeing the plane get between 50 and 100 feet into the air before it suddenly veered to the right and came down in a ball of fire. Latson said he could not speculate on what caused the plane to go down, but the investigation will be thorough.
“I will be able to look at the continuity control parts that were not consumed by fire,” he said. “And the other thing I will be looking at for the pilot is his training history and medical history.”
Close to 150 people watching a freshman football game saw the crash as it happened. Jordon Sweatt was one of the football coaches who rushed off the field to see what happened.
People in the crowed rushed into action, many of them running to the crash scene and hoping to help the victims. Wreckage was scattered about 200-to-300 yards away from the runway. First responders were on the scene in less than a minute.
The NTSB investigation could take several months to a year. The debris will be moved sometime Friday afternoon to a storage facility in the Dallas area for further examination.