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M-346 crashes during a test flight in Italy, one of the two crew members killed

The aircraft involved in the accident was an M-346. The two pilots ejected by parachute: a Leonardo test pilot and a pilot instructor from an external company, who unfortunately died.

Earlier this morning an M-346 aircraft crashed in the area above Monte Legnone, near Lecco in Northern Italy. Unfortunately, the rescue teams arriving at the site of the accident ascertained the death of one of the two pilots. Leonardo and the Italian Air Force have expressed their most heartfelt condolences.

As per its established practice, Leonardo has immediately activated an internal investigation committee. The cause of the accident is under investigation.

Leonardo clarifies that, taking into account the current status of the relevant investigation, any theory on the possible causes is premature. 

The aircraft involved in the accident was an M-346 flown by a crew of two made of a Leonardo test pilot and an outsourced instructor pilot. The aircraft took to the air from Leonardo’s Venegono Superiore site (Varese – Italy) at 11:00AM following the technical checks prior to flight authorisation, completed shortly ahead of take-off and performed in full compliance with the inspection plan authorised by the relevant aviation authorities.

The flight plan included trials aimed at demonstrating specific capabilities which had already been tested during several flights already carried out in the past.

At 11:35AM, contact with the aircraft was lost. Thanks to the prompt responsiveness of the rescue teams, the aircraft wreckage was identified nearby Colico (Monte Legnone), between Como and Lecco in the Northern Italy.

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