1 killed, 2 injured in Aspen, Colo., plane crash

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by THOMAS PEIPERT / The Associated Press

The Associated Press

Posted on January 5, 2014 at 4:09 PM

Updated Sunday, Jan 5 at 5:43 PM

DENVER (AP) - A fiery plane crash at the Aspen airport Sunday afternoon killed one person and injured two others, one severely, Colorado authorities said.

The three were the only ones aboard the plane, said Thomas Wright, a dispatcher with the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office. One of those hurt had injuries that were not serious.

Ginny Dyche, a spokeswoman for Aspen Valley Hospital, said the facility admitted two patients who were involved in the crash. She said they were still being evaluated, but she declined to release any other information.

Allen Kenitzer, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said the aircraft appeared to be a Bombardier Challenger 600, a midsized private jet.

FAA spokesman said the plane was headed from Tucson, Ariz., and crashed upon landing. Attempts by The Associated Press to reach airport officials in Colorado and Arizona were not immediately successful.

The crash prompted Twitter responses from two celebrity witnesses, who confirmed to The Associated Press that they sent the tweets.

Country singer LeAnn Rimes Cibrian tweeted via leannrimes on Sunday: “So sad! Horrible plane crash we just saw happen at the Aspen airport.”

Comedian Kevin Nealon sent a series of tweets about the crash through kevin_nealon.

His first one said, “Horrible plane crash here at Aspen airport. Exploded into flames as it was landing. I think it was a private jet.”

Later he tweeted, “Airport is closed now. I think I’ll drive back to LA after seeing that.”

Tom Renwick, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Grand Junction, said snow showers were reported in the area Sunday afternoon, but not at the airport. He said it has been overcast all day with temperatures hovering around 10 degrees.

A message left with a National Transportation Safety Board spokesman was not immediately returned.

Aspen is located in the Rocky Mountains about 100 miles southwest of Denver.

Associated Press writer Jake Coyle in New York contributed to this report.

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