Cause of Grenoble plane crash that killed 5 unknown

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – A family of five from Morocco died Saturday 5 January shortly before 14:00 when their small plane, a Piper PA34, crashed shortly after taking off from the airport in Grenoble. Researchers told French media Monday morning that the cause of the crash is not yet known.

Farid Berrada, 46, head of Colorado, a large paint manufacturer based in Casablanca, died, along with his wife and three children, age 5 to 13. The family had been skiing in the French Alps and was heading home to Morocco via Spain. Another small plane with other family members had taken off shortly before; their plane cut short its trip and landed in Avignon, according to French media, once the crash occurred.

Pilot error or a technical problem may have caused the crash, but investigators say it is too early to tell. The weather was poor, with low cloud cover, but a number of other planes had left the airport without any trouble.