Emergency personnel respond to deadly incident at Sidney airport

SIDNEY - The Sidney Police Department and Cheyenne County Sheriff's office are investigating the death of two Western Nebraska Community College students at the school's Aviation Maintenance facility at the Sidney Municipal airport.

Emergency personnel were called to Lloyd Carr Field south of Sidney Thursday morning and barricaded the northwest side of the building with emergency vehicles and police tape.

A group of students were seen in the airport parking lot as law enforcement examined the scene. One student said they were so shaken up by the tragic accident, they were having a difficult time giving statements to authorities.

"We are deeply saddened by the horrific events that have taken place today in our Aviation Maintenance facility," WNCC President Dr. Carmen Simone. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families, friends, classmates, and faculty members impacted by this tragedy. Our Aviation Maintenance program is a very tight-knit group and this is an incredibly difficult time for all."

Simone says the school will continue to work with local authorities to assist with investigation. The names of the students involved will not been released until next of kin are notified. 

WNCC cancelled classes and events on the Sidney campus for the rest of the day Thursday. Counselors arrived at the scene shortly before noon to speak with students.

The emergency did not include active airplanes or vehicles. The airport remained open to normal traffic.

The Sidney Volunteer Fire Department also responded to the scene.

The college’s website says the aviation program prepares students for entry-level aviation maintenance technician jobs. Western Nebraska Community College has campuses in Alliance, Scottsbluff and Sidney.

This is a developing story. Stay with News Channel Nebraska for the latest.