Five French tourists were killed in Peru Wednesday when their plane crashed while flying over the famous Nazca Lines, pre-Inca depictions of animals that are best seen from the sky, police said.
The small plane crashed following an apparent mechanical failure not far from the mysterious, 2,500-year-old lines, around 450 kilometers (280 miles) south of Lima, highway police said.
Firefighters said the Cessna 206, owned by the Aeroica firm, was completely destroyed in the crash, although the Peruvian pilot survived and was hospitalized in Nazca.
The dead tourists were named as: Yollande Paimparay, born in 1946, and her husband Robert, born in 1942; Christine Maze, born in 1945; Marie-France Lethuillier, born in 1949; and Anne-Marie Soudant de Pelchin, born in 1947.
The plane had apparently tried to turn around to land and crashed after hitting a power line, according to the local RPP radio.
It was the second plane incident in as many weeks in the same location.
Another small plane, also carrying five French tourists, made an emergency landing on the Panamerican highway in March. No one was injured, and technical problems were blamed.
The Nazca Lines were drawn by the Paracas civilization in a desert region of southern Peru. The markings can be fully appreciated only from the air, where intricate images of monkeys, birds and reptiles can be seen. (AFP)
Five French tourists killed in Peru plane crash