A British man and a New Zealand man have died after their small plane crashed in New Zealand, police said on Monday.

Christopher Howell, 46, of Britain, and Christopher Rawlings, 48, of Clive, New Zealand, died on Sunday when the Piper Tomahawk plane they were flying crashed in a riverbed near the North Island town of Hastings, police said.

Police said Howell was at the controls practicing manoeuvres at the time of the crash. They said he was intending to obtain a New Zealand pilot license.

It wasn’t not clear what caused the crash and the country’s Civil Aviation Authority is investigating.

The plane was owned by a local aviation club.

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