RUSSELL, Iowa — It could take a year to determine the cause of a small plane crash in southern Iowa that killed two people over the weekend, a spokesman for a federal agency leading the investigation said Monday.
National Transportation Safety Board spokesman Peter Knudson said a preliminary report on Saturday's crash will be released in a few days. It will include some details and circumstances surrounding the afternoon crash in Wright Township, near Russell.
The state medical examiner's office completed autopsies on the bodies Sunday. The Wayne County Sheriff's Office said in a news release Monday night that 53-year-old John Joseph Wood and 51-year-old Resia Lynn Wood, both of Colorado Springs, died in the crash.
Authorities say the names are being released based on evidence collected at the scene of the crash and communication with family members. Additional information was not released.
A full investigation into the cause of the crash may take about a year to be completed, he said.
Investigators have recovered at least one GPS unit from the rural crash site. It will be sent to the agency's lab in Washington, where data can be extracted from it.
"We look at every piece of information that may be relevant to the investigation," he said.
Additional information about the crash is limited.
Tony Molinaro, a spokesman with the Federal Aviation Administration, said the single-engine RV-7A aircraft lost radar contact prior to the crash. FAA records show it was a fixed-wing plane.
Russell is about 50 miles southeast of Des Moines.