Flight data shows erratic path in Carteret County plane crash – WITN

CARTERET COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) – WITN is investigating the conditions that led up to the plane crash in Carteret County.
The flight path recorded by FlightAware, an industry-standard service that accurately logs real-time flights all over the world, show an erratic flight path, as described by eyewitnesses.
The path shows the plane flying directly southwest toward Beaufort before cutting sharply east and taking a wide turn before returning to its original path.
Expert pilot and flight instructor Robert Katz says it is standard during inclement weather and he believes the pilot was trying to steer clear of a system rather than flying through it. It has not been confirmed what caused the plane crash, including if weather played a factor.
The flight data shows the plane never went above 3,500 feet, which Katz says is much lower than the small, private, Pilatus PC-12/47 plane would normally be flown. According to FlightAware data, in the last few minutes of the flight, the plane changed altitude dramatically before falling incredibly fast.
The Coast Guard says 8 people were on board the plane that disappeared from a radar screen off the coast Sunday. The crash happened about four miles east of Drum Inlet, which is 18 miles northeast of Michael J. Smith Field in Beaufort.
Family members told NBC News that among the eight on board the plane were friends Kole McInnis, Daily Shepherd, Jake Taylor, and Noah Styron. WITN learned Monday that an Eastern Carolina businessman, Hunter Parks, and his girlfriend, Stephanie Fulcher, were also among those who are feared lost after the crash.
Coast Guard Cutter Richard Snyder stayed at the crash site overnight Monday, but officials say there are no new updates as of Tuesday morning.
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