1 dead after Ark. crop-dusters collide

PARAGOULD, Ark. — One pilot was killed and another injured Wednesday when two crop-dusters collided in midair over northeast Arkansas.

A Grumman G164 and an Air Tractor crashed into each other around 11:35 a.m., about 16 miles southwest of Paragould, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Lynn Lunsford said. Each plane was carrying one person.

A medical helicopter flew the injured pilot to a hospital, said Greene County deputy coroner Sammy Hays, who did not know the extent of that person’s injuries.

Greene County Sheriff Dan Langston told Jonesboro television station KAIT (http://is.gd/HYqYan ) that both pilots were local and that they flew from airstrips in Craighead and Greene counties. Langston said it appears the crop dusters turned into one another at the corner of the fields they were spraying.

The aircraft came to rest about 300 yards apart.

FAA records show the Air Tractor is a turbo-prop plane registered to Miles Flying Service in Jonesboro. A phone number for the company was busy Wednesday.

Lunsford said FAA investigators were en route and the National Transportation Safety Board was notified. Paragould is about 150 miles northeast of Little Rock.

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