‘Multiple fatalities’ after two planes crash above California airport


At least two people were killed when two planes collided while trying to land at an airport in California.

The planes, a twin-engine Cessna 340 and a single-engine Cessna 152, crashed into one another shortly before 3pm on Thursday above Watsonville Municipal Airport.

Two people were aboard the Cessna 340 and only the pilot was aboard the Cessna 152, according to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Officials said “multiple fatalities” were reported, but it was not immediately clear whether anyone survived.

No one on the ground was injured.

Footage from the scene showed the wreckage of the aircraft and emergency services, including firefighters, at the scene.

The city of Watsonville, in Santa Cruz County and around 100 miles from San Francisco, posted a statement on the crash on social media.

Pic: KION-TV via AP
Pic: KION-TV via AP

“Multiple agencies responded to Watsonville Municipal Airport after two planes attempting to land collided,” it tweeted.

“We have reports of multiple fatalities.”

The aircraft collided about 200 feet in the air, according to Franky Herrera, who was driving past the airport at the time of the crash.

“The smaller plane just spiralled down and crashed right here,” he told the Santa Cruz Sentinel, pointing to the wreckage of the aircraft near the edge of the airfield.

Wreckage from a plane crash at Watsonville Municipal Airport in Watsonville, California. Pic: AP
Pic: AP

He said the twin-engine plane continued on, but “it was struggling”, and then he saw flames at the other side of the airport.

Images showed a damaged hangar with the wreckage of a plane.

The city-owned airport does not have a control tower to direct aircraft landing and taking off.

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