The plane, a single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza, crashed just just 16 seconds after taking off from Visalia Municipal Airport around 6:35 p.m on Saturday. It went down near Highway 99 south of Visalia in Tulare County.
According to the Federal Aviation Administration, all four people aboard the aircraft died in the crash. The victims were not immediately identified. Per the Visalia Times Delta, the 1966 Beech plane is registered to David Chelini out of Sacramento.
Tulare County Sheriff’s Sgt. Jesse Cox told reporters dispatch received its first call on the incident around four minutes after takeoff, when a resident called 911 after hearing something that sounded like a plane taking off followed by a “boom.”
It took first responders some time to locate the wreckage because of darkness and dense fog. However, it is unknown whether the fog was a factor in the crash.
“It was dark. At the time, it was much foggier,” Cox told Visalia Times Delta. “We circulated the area with personnel until we found it (the wreckage).”
The National Transportation Safety Board will lead the investigation into what may have caused the crash. The identities of the four people on board the plane had not been released Sunday night.