A pilot is dead after an experimental plane crashed shortly after takeoff in the far southwest suburbs.
The single-engine, experimental aircraft took off from Aurora Airport around 7:45 a.m. Witnesses said it seemed to be having engine problems, hit some power lines and crashed into a field at Granart Road and Mary Drive in Sugar Grove. That's about a mile and a half away from the airport.
Police said this was the first flight for the plane, which reportedly broke into pieces as it crashed.
“The pilot requested to return to the airport but crashed before reaching it,’’ said Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Tony Molinaro.
The homemade, single-engine aircraft, an E-Racer with tail #N345JM, was on a “test flight,’’ said Molinaro.
The pilot, 73-year-old John Morrison, was the only person on board. He died at the scene.
Police said Morrison, of Aurora, is an experienced pilot who had a long history of flying experimental aircraft.
The FAA is investigating the crash.