A Pilatus PC-12 carrying a family of six crashed in Central Florida on Thursday, killing all six individuals aboard after what appears to have been an in-flight separation of the aircraft, authorities say.
Just 30 minutes prior to the crash, the single-engine turboprop had made a stopover to clear customs in Fort Pierce, Florida, while on what was to be a trip home from the Bahamas to Junction City, Kansas.
Images from FlightAware show the Pilatus PC-12 heading on a continuous northwest flight path after leaving Fort Pierce before veering sharply off-course to the right and continuing on for several miles before the crash. According to the NTSB, the aircraft had been flying at an altitude of 25,100 feet.
Search and rescue personnel found debris from the accident strewn more than three miles from the main crash site.
According to investigators, the wreckage indicated “a rupture in the cabin area of the plane while it was in the air.”
The PC-12/47 went down in a remote area within Tiger Creek Preserve, located southeast of Lakeland. Due to the secluded location, rescue and emergency personnel were forced to access the site via helicopter and all-terrain vehicles.
There was wet weather in the flight path area periodically throughout the day of the accident, however it is unclear whether or not it played a role in the crash.
The aircraft’s 45-year-old pilot Ronald Bramlage, his wife and four children were killed in the crash. All aboard were found within the aircraft, except for one of the children, a 13-year-old named Boston Bramlage, whose body was found approximately 0.4 mile away.
The accident has attracted the attention of the mainstream media due to the fact that the aircraft was the same one used to secretly transport Casey Anthony after she was released from jail following her acquittal on murder charges stemming from the death of her two-year-old daughter.
A preliminary report from the NTSB is expected within the next few weeks.