Two Die in Light Plane Crash Near Rehovot

Both pilot error and aircraft malfunction examined as possible causes.

Two men in their 50s were killed yesterday when the ultralight aircraft in which they were traveling crashed into a field near Kibbutz Kvutzat Shiller, in the Rehovot area. The two men had taken off from Rishon Letzion and were supposed to return there, but the aircraft crashed some 200 meters away from the kibbutz landing strip. The cause of the crash remains unclear.

"We got to the field and saw the aircraft lying there with its front completely crushed," paramedic Roni Abraham told Haaretz. "We saw two people in the wreckage, and after the firefighters removed them from the plane we had to pronounce them dead at the scene."

The crash site
Ilan Assayag

"Eyewitnesses said the aircraft had been circling and hit the ground at a high speed," said Yitzhak Raz, the Transportation Ministry's senior aviation crash investigator. "As far as I understand, the two people were killed instantly."

A senior official involved in the investigation told Haaretz that it was too early to tell what led to the crash, and both pilot error and aircraft malfunction were being examined as possible causes.