4 dead after private jet crashes while trying to land near Lake Tahoe

National

TRUCKEE, Calif. (KTXL) — Four people are dead after a private jet crashed into a wooded area between a golf course and a residential neighborhood near Lake Tahoe Monday, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Two passengers and two crew members died in the fiery wreck after the aircraft slammed down short of the runway at the Truckee-Tahoe Airport, the FAA wrote in a news release. On Tuesday, FAA officials said the circumstances around the crash were still unknown.

“There’s no survivors that we know of. It was very fortunate where the crash site is that it did not hit any residential structures,” Nevada County Coroner Shannon Moon said at a news conference Monday. “Everyone at the scene can appreciate that.”

The Bombardier CL 600 jet struck towering pine trees just before plummeting to the ground and bursting into flames feet from a fairway belonging to the Ponderosa Golf Course in Truckee. 

Hours later firefighters were still dousing the main section of the aircraft with water. 

Officials said the crash caused a one-quarter acre fire and downed power lines in the area that resulted in power outages. 

As of Tuesday afternoon, officials had not yet revealed the identities of those who died. 

“Due to the extent of the crash scene and the resulting fire, names will not be available for quite some time,” wrote Nevada County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Andrew Trygg. “We will be using DNA evidence to confirm the decedents.”

Gary Highland, who has lived in Truckee for 30 years, said he was sitting inside his home office, just before the crash happened. 

“It had to come in at a very steep angle,” Highland said.  “Huge explosion. And then a fireball as tall as that tree.” 

Deputies closed off the immediate area pending an investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board Tuesday. 

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