TULARE COUNTY, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – Four people are dead after a small plane crashed near an airport in Visalia on Saturday night, according to the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office.

Around 6:40 p.m., deputies were called out to the area of Road 68 and Avenue 288, just west of the Visalia Municipal Airport, after someone called 9-1-1 to report a plane had possibly just crashed.

When deputies arrived, they found the wreckage of a small engine aircraft in a nearby field.

The Sheriff’s Office says four people on board the plane were killed in the crash.

While investigating, deputies say they learned the plane had left the airport minutes prior to the crash.

Deputies say the National Transportation Safety Board has been notified about the crash and investigators are on their way to the scene.

Authorities are expected to have the area taped off throughout the night.

No other details about the crash have been provided by authorities at this time.