WATSONVILLE, Calif. (KRON) — One of the pilots involved in a deadly crash in Watsonville attempted to go around another plane before the two aircrafts slammed into each other in mid-air, audio traffic obtained by KRON4 showed. The crash happened around 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, resulting in three deaths.
“Gonna go around then cuz you’re coming at me pretty quick, man,” the pilot said. Less than 15 seconds later, the planes crashed into each other.
“Everybody, please be advised,” recorded radio traffic revealed. “There is an accident towards, uh, runway two zero, please be advised on airport Watsonville.” You can listen to the full audio using the video player above.
Both of the planes involved were small, private planes. Witnesses and investigators said they collided above Watsonville Municipal Airport before crashing into the ground.
One of the planes ignited in flames after the crash. A transcript of the radio traffic less than a minute after the crash is below.
“Broadway, echo five zero here. Anything on? Do you hear anything on, uh, C-TAF? We heard there was a, the crash at Watsonville just now a twin Cessna.”
“Uh, it was a twin Cessna and a single engine Cessna. Um, it looks like both of ’em went down pretty hard.”
“You said it was two aircraft?”
“Uh, affirmative from what it looks like, like it was uh, 172 or single engine Cessna and then a twin Cessna.”
“Did it seem like they crashed into each other?”
“Yeah, the, uh, twin Cessna was on a long final approach and somebody else was on base turning final and uh, the final approach. The twin engine Cessna didn’t see him and, uh, he crashed into the twin. the single engine Cessna went down and the twin Cessna, uh, rolled into the ground.”
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As the traffic shows, officials said the pilots were trying to land when the crash happened. One plane crashed into an airport hangar building and the other landed in a field.
KRON4 also obtained video that shows debris falling from the sky after the crash. The video also shows an explosion when one of the planes hit the ground.