EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – A Pak West cargo jet, based out of El Paso, crashed early Tuesday morning in Eastern Georgia, leaving two dead.
The McDuffie County Coroner’s Office identified the victims as 63-year-old Claude Duchesne of El Paso and 73-year-old Raymond Bachman, of Fountain Hills, Arizona. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said the two were the only ones aboard the Dassault Falcon business jet when it crashed.
Officials said that the wreckage was less than a mile short of the runway. The coroner added that the crash wasn’t a fiery one.
The FAA released the following statement on the crash:
A Dassault Falcon business jet crashed near Wrightsboro Road in Thomson, Ga., around 5:44 a.m. local time today. Two people were aboard. The plane was flying from Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport in Lubbock, Texas, to Thomson-McDuffie County Airport.
The FAA will release the tail number of the aircraft after investigators verify it at the accident site. The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate. The NTSB will be in charge of the investigation and will provide additional updates. Neither agency identifies people involved in aircraft accidents.
Our affiliate in Lubbock (KLBK/KAMC-TV) initially reached out to the FAA about the crash, as their investigation revealed that jet took off from Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport after a stop early Tuesday morning, after leaving El Paso International Airport shortly before 10 p.m. Monday night.
KTSM reached out to Sierra West Airlines – the parent company of Pak West – for comment, who responded they had no comment at this time.
The Pak West jet was one of nine aircraft in Sierra West’s fleet and one of six based out of El Paso.
Look for updates throughout the afternoon here on ktsm.com and in our later newscasts.