Trainee pilot and instructor in critical condition after plane crash

A trainee pilot and instructor are in a critical condition in hospital after their small plane crashed in central western NSW.

Emergency crews found the four-seater single-engine Cirrus SR-22 aircraft engulfed in flames on Aerodrome Road at Orange Airport about 7.10pm on Tuesday.

The two occupants, a man and woman in their 40s, were being airlifted from the scene to Royal North Shore Hospital suffering critical burns and possible fractures, police said.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau said the pair were conducting a training flight at the time of the accident.

A team of ATSB investigators would begin an examination of the wreckage, gather available recorded data and interview witnesses on Wednesday morning, the bureau said in a statement.

A 200 metre exclusion zone has been set up at the scene.

A patient is transferred to a helicopter to be flown to hospital in Sydney. Source: Prime7