Dead After Small Plane Crashes in Southern California Mall Parking Lot

5 killed when small plane crashes in California parking lot

A small plane crashed in a shopping center parking lot in Santa Ana, Calif. Sunday afternoon, with local media reporting several fatalities.

Los Angeles reported the plane went down around 12:30 p.m. local time.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the pilot issued an emergency call before going down near the John Wayne Airport in Orange County. Orange County Fire Authority spokesperson Tony Bommarito said it was a wonder that while the crew and passengers of the plane died on the spot, nobody got injured on the ground.

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It was a close call for at least one person, whose auto got damaged in the incident. There were no injuries on the ground, according to OCFA. The plane struck at least one unoccupied vehicle, whose owner was elsewhere shopping at the time. "It, like, lost control, and it was twirling, and the more twirl, the more lower it came down and then we heard the bang", shared witness Connie Hernandez.

Orange County Fire Capt. We looked up and we just saw a plane fall. According to the FAA, the pilot of the aircraft, which is registered to a San Franciso corportation, declared a Mayday shortly before the crash. The FAA launched an investigation into the crash, and added that the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the probable cause.

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