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State police identify I-93 plane crash victims

October 25. 2012 1:37PM
A tarpaulin covers the fuselage of a single-engine plane that crashed this afternoon on Interstate 93 in Hooksett, killing two. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)

UPDATED, 6:25 p.m.: HOOSKETT - New Hampshire State Police identified the two victims of today's airplane crash on Interstate 93 as Herman and Doris Hassinger, both 83, of Block Island, R.I.

Family members have been notified of the death of the husband and wife, police said.

Police said they have been unable to confirm who was flying the plane at the time of the crash, which remains under investigation.

An earlier update follows.

HOOSKETT - Two people have been confirmed dead in the crash of a single-engine plane along Interstate 93 in Hooksett just north of Exit 10.

New Hampshire State Police public information officer Lt. Nicole Armaganian said a witness reported the plane was southbound and clipped a light pole before hitting the guardrail.

State police have confirmed in a press release that two people died in the crash that occurred shortly after 1 p.m.

Audio: Field interview with Lt. Chrstopher Wagner, Troop B - NH State Police

Reports from the scene indicate that one person was ejected from the six-seat plane, and another was still inside the aircraft.

Police said the crash happened in the northbound lane near mile marker 26.2 at the ramp for Interstate 293 and the Everett Turnpike southbound.

According to State Police Lt. Christopher Wagner at the scene, the preliminary investigation reveals the plane had been flying south and struck a DOT utility light pole, then crashed into the passing lane and shoulder of the highway. One man was ejected from the aircraft and the other subject, who appears to be a female, remained inside the aircraft.

Aeronautics inspectors confirmed the plane crashed into the light pole, with the bulbs knocked off and on the ground, even though the post itself wasn't bent.

The ramp from I-93 North to 293 South is now closed, and I-93 is down to one lane northbound.

State aeronautics investigators at the scene say they will keep the plane in its present position for a long time. Motorists are advised to find alternate routes.

FAA Registry information indicates that the fixed-wing, single-engine Beechcraft A36 is registered out of Block Island, R.I. The same plane crashed at Nashua's Boire Field in August of 2010, when pilot Herman Hassinger of Block Island, who is listed as an architect and the owner of the plane, skidded along the runway when the plane's landing gear malfunctioned. A report from that crash indicated an initial inspection showed a bent rod prevented the left landing gear assembly from locking in the down position.

Investigators from the Bureau of Aeronautics are currently on scene; investigators from the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and the NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) are en route. The NTSB is lead investigating agency for this crash and will be coordinating with the FAA and the Bureau of Aeronautics to assist the State Police in identifying the two occupants of the plane and understand their intended flight path.

Public Safety Hooksett

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