Surveillance video captured the moment a plane carrying six people, including an Instagram model, crashed onto an Arizona golf course, bursting into flames and sending a plume of smoke into the air in early April.
The Piper PA-24 was seen on video from a traffic camera turning left before descending down onto the TPC Scottsdale Champions Gold Course shortly after it took off on April 9, FOX10 Phoenix reported. The plane took off around 8:45 p.m. from Scottsdale Airport and was heading to Las Vegas. All six on board were killed.
The plane appeared to explode upon impact, sending fire and smoke into the sky. Another overhead image showed fire raging on the golf course with the aircraft’s debris scattered.
"As the turn progressed, the bank angle increased, and the airplane started to descend,” the National Transportation Safety Board said in a preliminary report. “The wings became nearly vertical, and the view of the airplane was lost behind a berm. Seconds later, the camera caught a fireball when the airplane impacted terrain.”
Police identified those killed as Mariah Sunshine Coogan, 23; Erik Valente, 26; James Louis Pedroza, 28; Anand Anil Patel, 28; Helena Lagos, 22; and Iris Carolina Rodriguez Garcia, 23.
Coogan was a model with more than 27,000 Instagram followers. She attended Cardinal Newman High School in California and was described by her mother as a “bright light.” The 23-year-old posted a photo of herself and five others on the plane with the words “#VEGASLETSGO” moments before the crash.
The official cause of the crash has not been released, but experts say the weight of the aircraft may have contributed to the deadly incident.