3 killed in Tennessee small plane crash that left half-mile debris field

All three people on board were killed Wednesday when a small plane crashed in the area of Franklin, Tennessee, authorities said.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the single-engine Beechcraft V35 crashed at around noon, local time. The plane had departed Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and was en route to Kentucky when the crash occurred, Williamson County Sheriff Mark Elrod told reporters in a news briefing Wednesday evening.

"It was quickly evident that this would be a search-and-recovery operation, not a search-and-rescue operation," Elrod said.

According to Elrod, first responders arrived to find a "rather large debris field." Williamson County Fire and Rescue Chief Bob Galoppi disclosed the debris field is estimated to be about a half-mile long.

Officials are "unsure where the crash started or where it ended," Elrod said.

The National Transportation Safety Board will lead the investigation into the cause of the crash.

"It does appear that the plane did break up in the air, unsure what caused that," Elrod said.

The names of the victims were not immediately released.

Franklin is located about 20 miles south of Nashville.

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