One Person Dies When Small Plane Hits Car On California Highway

by
Reuters
A passenger in a car died when a small plane carrying two people made an emergency landing on a Southern California highway.

A small plane carrying two people made an emergency landing on a Southern California highway on Saturday and struck the vehicle in a crash that kills one person and left five others injured, officials said.

The single-engine Lancair IV came down on I-15 near Highway 76, in the area of Fallbrook, said Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor in an email.

The propeller plane made an emergency landing on its belly and skidded along a lane for more than 100 feet (30 meters), crashing into the back of a Nissan Sentra parked at the side of the highway, said North County Fire Protection District spokesman John Buchanan.

Before the plane came down, the four people in the Nissan had stopped to sync the sedan's Bluetooth wireless system, Buchanan said.

The crash killed a woman in the car's back seat, Buchanan said.

The plane's pilot, a man in his 60s, was transported to a hospital with life-threatening injuries, according to Buchanan, while his passenger and three occupants of the car were all hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries.

"It was pretty nerve-wracking seeing the plane coming right over top of me and then hit the road and then slide up here and then hit that car," truck driver Bill Senclare told San Diego television station KGTV.

A spokesman for the California Highway Patrol, which responded to the crash less than 40 miles (64 km) north of San Diego, could not immediately be reached for comment.

It was not clear what caused the plane to come down on the highway.

Gregor said the National Transportation Safety Bureau and the Federal Aviation Administration will investigate the crash.