UPDATE: 1:55 p.m. ET: WSBTV in Atlanta reported that the four victims who died in the plane crash were Christopher Byrd, Phillip Byrd, Greg Byrd and a woman. 

The crash's large explosion was apparently felt by witnesses in the area. "The impact was large, like a bomb being dropped," said witness Don McGee to WSBTV.

UPDATE: 1:47 p.m. ET: Tom Dees, a Mississippi correspondent for Fox 13 in Memphis, Tennessee, reported that the plane was headed for Oxford, Mississippi. The plane was reportedly carrying a father, two sons and a girlfriend to the University of Mississippi's graduation.


Original Post Follows:

Four people died when a small plane crashed Friday morning on a Georgia highway, reported 11 Alive in Atlanta. The plane apparently came down around 10 a.m. EDT near DeKalb-Peachtree Airport in DeKalb County, just outside of Atlanta.

The plane, a Piper PA-32, took off from the airport on Runway 3Right but then crashed into I-285, Atlanta's perimeter highway, about a mile away, FAA spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen told 11 Alive. WSB-TV in Atlanta reported a source said the pilot became aware of a problem at takeoff and said, "Hey, we're going down." DeKalb County Fire Capt. Eric Jackson confirmed to 11 Alive that four had died, but the identities of the deceased had yet to be released.

When the plane came down it nearly hit two vehicles on the highway, WSB-TV reported, leaving traffic blocked in both directions surrounding the scene. WSB-TV warned drivers to avoid that section of I-285 altogether. The Georgia Department of Transportation said the traffic shutdown could last eight hours, according to a tweet from Breaking News Feed.

The DeKalb-Peachtree Airport is about a 20-minute drive from the center of Atlanta. FAA officials were reportedly on their way to the scene.