Published April 30, 2013
Authorities say one person was killed after two small airplanes collided in midair over mountains in Southern California Monday, sending one crashing into a rocky ridge while the second was able to maneuver a belly-flop landing on a nearby golf course.
Rescuers searching through the wreckage of the plane that crashed found the body of a man believed to be the pilot. Los Angeles County sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said the pilot is believed to have been the only one on board.
Firefighters responding to a report of a small wildfire at about 2 p.m. spotted the aircraft debris, put out the fire and began a search for survivors, county fire Inspector Quvondo Johnson said.
Three people on the plane that landed on a fairway had minor injuries. MyFoxLA.com reports all aboard that plane were taken to a local hospital.
Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said a preliminary review of radar records showed the two flight-paths crossed just after 2 p.m.
The golf-course plane, a single-engine Cessna 172, was flying west at an altitude of 3,500 feet when the second plane, also a Cessna 172, approached from the east after leaving Santa Monica Airport for a test flight.
The National Transportation Safety Board and FAA are investigating.
FAA records show the plane on the golf course was manufactured in 1980 and is registered to Ameriflyers of Florida, LLC. A message left at a number listed for the company was not immediately returned.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.