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Coroner: At least 2 dead in plane crash in North Myrtle Beach

At least two people were killed when a plane crashed into a recreation vehicle park in the Briarcliffe RV Resort.

The crash was reported just after 1 p.m. today at the park, which is located on North Kings Highway. Witnesses reported seeing the plane crash into the park and hearing screams from victims.

Horry County Coroner Robert Edge said at 1:30 p.m. today that at least two people were killed in the crash.

Pat Dowling, North Myrtle Beach spokesman, said the pilot of the plane and a woman in an RV at the park were killed during the crash. The woman's husband, who also was inside the RV, suffered first-degree burns, Dowling said.

The plane clipped some trees as it crashed and three RVs in the park were damaged, Dowling said. The weather was cloudy with light drizzling rain at the time of the incident.

Two blocks inside the RV park were closed as emergency crews worked to secure the area, Dowling said.

Gail Moore, arrived at the RV park a day ago and was located directly beside the trailer that the plane struck.

She said she heard the explosion and went outside to, and while trying to move her car she heard screams from inside the burning trailer.

"Listening to someone die is not a very nice thing," she said. "The screaming, I can’t get it out of my head."

Doc and Deb Dooley, a couple who were in their trailer across from the crash site said they heard a loud screeching sound just before the crash. When they looked out the window to see what was causing the noise, they saw a ball of flame outside and weren’t sure what it was.

Doc Dooley thought it was a propane explosion, he said, and he grabbed a garden hose to help. Outside he and several others had hoses but they flames were too big, he said.

Dooley said frantic man ran from the trailer that was struck by the plane looking for his wife and screaming ``where’s my wife.’’ The older man and his wife had been in the RV park less than a week, the Dooleys said.

"All we did was try to help," said Doc Dooley. "We didn’t even know it was a plane at first."

Joyce Bertschy, an employee at the RV resort, said she heard the plane come in low over the office building.

She said she was in the office with about eight other employees when "we heard it come in and then we heard the explosion."

She said the resort is in the flight line for Grand Strand airport and they sometimes hear planes come over.

The plane crashed on the north end of the RV park, close to U.S. 17, she said.

"Thank God our resort is almost empty at this time," she said. But she said there were "quite a few people" in the area where the plane crashed.

Willie Brown, manger at the Fuddruckers restaurant close to the entrance to the RV park, said he was in the building when he heard the plane go over head.

He said he heard the noise and looked out the window to see what was happening and "saw an explosion and we could see the flames."

"It barely missed us," he said. "I'm grateful for my life."

He said that after the initial explosion when the plane hit the ground there were two or three other smaller explosions but "right now it seems like they got everything under control."

This is the second fatal plane crash in a year in the North Myrtle Beach.

Danny Carroll, 54, his wife, Raychel Carroll, 66, and their granddaughter, Mallory Fields, died in a crash on July 14 that occurred soon after Carroll took off from the Grand Strand Airport in North Myrtle Beach.

That crash remains under investigation, but a preliminary report showed Danny Carroll, who piloted the plane, was not rated to fly that particular plane at night, according to a preliminary report released by the National Transportation Safety Board.

The Carroll family had spent the day with family on vacation in North Myrtle Beach.

The plane crashed into the back of a mobile home at 1306 Toucan Road in Creekside Mobile Home Park, Sandra Freeman, 54; Robert John Werkheiser, 38; and Keith Lewis, 35 were treated and released from area hospitals for injuries they suffered in the crash.

The mobile home caught fire when the plane exploded. A fourth person, Ronnie Bryant, 34, suffered burns.

More details will be posted as they become available.

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