North Myrtle Beach, SC - NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board said they were successfully able to recover pieces of a plane that crashed into a mobile home Wednesday night, killing all three onboard.
Bob Gretz, a senior NTSB air safety investigator, said officials were able to successfully recover all four corners of the plane - including its nose, tail and two wings. The four pieces of the plane, according to Gretz, have been sent to Griffin, GA, where they will be closely inspected to help determine a cause of the crash.
While sifting through the wreckage two days after the accident, Gretz said investigators were unable to recover a GPS or blackbox-type of device that would provide further clues into the crash. Gretz also added only two readable instruments were salvaged from the plane's cockpit.
Currently, officials are waiting to obtain a copy of an inspection report on the Piper PA-28, which will include notes from its last inspection on Feb. 18. Investigators are also planning on fully analyzing the plane's maintenance history, the pilot's flight experience and a pilot log.
Emergency officials were dispatched to the Creekside Mobile Home Park off of Little River Neck Road shortly before 9 p.m. Wednesday. Multiple 911 calls were made around 8:50 p.m. in reference to the crash, according to North Myrtle Beach spokeswoman Nicole Aiello.
Witnesses reported hearing multiple explosions before hearing the plane hit the ground.
"We saw the plane and everything," said Joshua Randall, who lives in the area and witnessed the crash. "It was circling around, then it came in a big loop and went down and hit the trailer."
Aiello said the plane appeared to have hit in front of a mobile home and slid into it, setting the home ablaze. Witnesses said they saw people running out of the home after the plane hit, although authorities have not confirmed that anyone was inside at the time of the crash.
North Myrtle Beach officials said flight records indicated three people were onboard the plane when it crashed into the mobile home, killing all of its occupants.
Horry County Coroner Robert Edge later confirmed the identities of the three victims as Danny Carroll, 54, his wife, Raychel, 66, and their granddaughter, Mallory Fields, 4. Edge said all three victims died from massive trauma.
The Piper PA-28 plane was rented from the Concord Regional Airport by Danny Carroll. The victims, according to Gretz, were in the process of returning to Concord from a short vacation along the Grand Strand at the time of the accident.
Gretz confirmed Thursday afternoon the Piper PA-28 involved in the accident was the first plane of its kind that Danny Carroll had flown.
FAA records show the plane was registered to Robert O'Neale III of 8405 Bampton Drive in Concord, NC. The plane was manufactured in 1979, according to the FAA.
Lady's Funeral Home announced a viewing for Danny Carroll, 54, Raychel Carroll, 66, and Mallory Fields, 4, will be held at Concord First Assembly from 5-8 p.m. Sunday. A funeral, according to officials, will follow on Monday at 2 p.m.