Coast Guard Calls Off Search for Downed Cirrus SR22

SR22 crashes in ocean after pilot incapacitated.

Cirrus SR22 Crash Restricted Airspace Simulation Reuters

Cirrus SR22 Crash Restricted Airspace Simulation Reuters

Reuters video shows simulation of the accident.

The Coast Guard has suspended its search for the pilot of a Cirrus SR22 that went down in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Virginia on Saturday after flying through Washington's restricted airspace and causing fighter jets to scramble.

A fishing vessel near the site of the crash recovered a wheel and engine cowl, which have been turned over to the National Transportation Safety Board. The Cirrus, en route from Waukesha, Wisconsin, to Virginia's Manassas Regional Airport, failed to land as scheduled. Instead, the airplane with only the pilot on board remained at an altitude of 13,000 well past its planned destination.

Two Norad F-16s flew alongside the Cirrus and saw the pilot unconscious in the cockpit. They continued to track the airplane until it began descending and crashed in the ocean.

This video from Reuters illustrates the accident.

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