Cessna 172 Mid-Air Collision Kills Two

Two Cessna 172s collided on Monday afternoon near Calabasas, California, on the west end of the San Fernando Valley near the Los Angeles metropolitan area. While receiving significant damage in the collision, one airplane landed safely on Westlake Golf Course, a few miles west of the crash site of the second airplane, which impacted a hillside in Malibu Creek State Park. Two occupants inside the crashed airplane died in the accident.

The two Cessna 172s had taken off from Santa Monica Airport. Radar images show the two airplanes merging, one heading east, the other west. Reports say the crashed airplane nosedived into the ground, creating a small crater on the surface. Charred fragments were all that remained of the airplane.

The other airplane continued on a westbound heading. It is unclear how much control the pilot was able to maintain over the airplane, but it landed, gear up, on one of the fairways at the golf course. Images show significant damage in the top portion of the windshield and inboard portion of the leading edge of the wing. One of the passengers was taken to a hospital with apparent back injuries while the other two appear to have walked away without any serious injuries.

The NTSB is investigating the crash.

Pia Bergqvist joined FLYING in December 2010. A passionate aviator, Pia started flying in 1999 and quickly obtained her single- and multi-engine commercial, instrument and instructor ratings. After a decade of working in general aviation, Pia has accumulated almost 3,000 hours of flight time in nearly 40 different types of aircraft.

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