Navajo Jump Plane Down In Poland

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Eleven of 12 people aboard a Piper Navajo jump plane were killed when the aircraft went down shortly after takeoff from Rudniki airfield near Czestochowa, Poland on Saturday. Czestochowa is about 120 miles southwest of Warsaw. One man in his 40s was taken to hospital in serious condition. Details of the crash were scarce in early reports but Pawel Fratczak, a spokesman for the local fire department, said the aircraft caught fire after crashing. 

The aircraft was owned by a skydiving school. With seats, a Navajo normally carries a maximum of eight people, including the pilot, and has a takeoff useful load of 2,600 pounds. A Navajo rigged for skydiving was recently advertised for sale with a capacity of 10 jumpers plus pilot and a useful load of 2,817 pounds. The sale aircraft also had vortex generators that added 340 pounds to the MTOW.