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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Weather Caused Crash

WASHINGTON ) -- Preliminary information in the investigation of the plane crash that killed Commerce Secretary Ronald Brown and 34 others indicates the Air Force pilots flew off course and into a mountain while hoping to break through clouds and land.

The two-man Air Force crew was forced to rely on the antiquated navigation aids at the Dubrovnik, Croatia, airport and the plane was fighting a crosswind and poor visibility. The plane struck the 698-meter mountain just 38 meters below its top, according to aviation sources. The plane was 2.9 kilometers off course at the point of impact.

The investigation is being hampered by the lack of a flight-data recorder and a cockpit voice recorder, the "black boxes'' required on civilian airliners and many Air Force transport planes.