Four dead as two planes in mid-air crash in Australia

Rory Sullivan
Emergency services respond to a collision of two small planes in Mangalore, Australia, on Wednesday February 19, 2020: ABC News

Four people have died in Australia after two planes crashed mid-air.

The aircraft collided over Mangalore, north of Melbourne, on Wednesday morning local time.

Victoria state police confirmed both planes had two occupants, all of whom were found dead at the crash sites.

The victims have yet to be identified.

Australia’s national broadcaster ABC reported Victoria police inspector Peter Koger as saying: "We're not sure why both aircraft were on the same trajectory or why they were in that area, but unfortunately they've collided mid-air.”

He added: "There was some talk of possible cloud cover and there's a possibility that they didn't see each other."

According to Mr Koger, one plane crashed straight after the collision, while the other continued for a distance before plunging to the ground.

Both planes had been “extensively damaged” during the collision, police said.

"It's a big tragedy for both families… it's very upsetting for everyone including emergency services that had to see this scene today," Mr Koger added.

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority and the Australian Transport Safety Bureau are aware of the incident.

Police are investigating the cause of the collision and will prepare a report for the coroner.

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