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December 31, 2012

Southern California Plane Crash Kills Couple and Teenage Daughter

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Written by: BNO News
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A Lancair IV-P kit plane similar to the accident aircraft. (Photo by Ahunt via wikimedia)

An Arizona couple and their teenage daughter were killed Saturday morning when their home-built plane went down in a nature preserve in Southern California, federal and local officials said on Sunday. The cause was not immediately known.

The accident happened at approximately 10:15 am local time on Saturday when the single-engine, experimental Lancair IV-P aircraft (N5M) crashed within the Sycamore Canyon Open Space Preserve, about 3 miles (4.8 kilometers) north of the city of Santee in San Diego County.

Ian Gregor, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), said the aircraft had departed Montgomery Field Airport in San Diego and was headed to Deer Valley Airport in Phoenix, Arizona. Local authorities identified the three victims as a 65-year-old man, his 53-year-old wife and their 19-year-old daughter.

Federal records showed the 2003-built aircraft was registered to 65-year-old William A. Stern, Jr. from Phoenix.

The cause of Saturday’s accident was not immediately known, but both the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will be investigating the crash. “NTSB is the lead investigative agency,” Gregor said. “The NTSB investigator usually posts a basic preliminary report on the agency’s website, www.ntsb.gov, within a week or two of an accident.”

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