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Sun, Aug 24, 2003

Bavarian Midair Claims Six

Glider and Skydiving Aircraft Collide

Six Germans are dead after an aircraft carrying skydivers to altitude collided with a single-place glider in the skies over Bavaria Saturday. The entangled wreckage of both aircraft landed in a cornfield north of Munich.

"All we know at this point is that the two aircraft crashed into each other in mid-air," said police spokesman Josef Bauer. "The wreckage landed in a field just outside of the town. Luckily no one on the ground was hurt. We don't know at what altitude the accident happened," Bauer said when asked about a local television news report saying the crash happened at an altitude of 1,200 meters (3,900 feet). "The investigation is not still going on."

Bauer said skies were clear and visibility was unlimited at the time of the midair.

The dead included the pilot of the glider, as well as the pilot aboard the Cessna single-engine aircraft (type unknown at this point). German police and civil aviation authorities are investigating.

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