Later, there was a helicopter sitting as stationary as it could above my mom's house for a ten minute period or so. Then after a while it was back. Making a lot of noise. No search lights. Just sitting there.
What was going on? Was this security for VIPs flying to or from the Santa Monica Airport two blocks away? When the electrician called to finalize coming out today to rewire my mom's house, he asked if we'd seen the big plume of smoke that seemed to be in Santa Monica. We hadn't. And we didn't connect the helicopter and the smoke until just now when I found this LA Times story online.
Coroner's officials have yet to sift through the charred wreckage of the crash of a small plane at Santa Monica Airport this weekend as they await special equipment to clear the heavily damaged site.The complete story is here.
Fire officials said the crash -- which occurred about 6:20 p.m. Sunday when a twin-engine Cessna Citation coming from Hailey, Idaho, veered off the right side of the runway and slammed into a nearby storage hangar -- was unsurvivable.
Both the hangar and the jet burst into flames, officials said, and the hangar collapsed.
The jet holds up to eight people, according to Cessna and registration information, but authorities have not said how many people were on the plane.
Early Monday morning, David Goddard, chairman of the Santa Monica Airport Commission, estimated that the crash site was about 150 feet from residences. Had the plane not hit the hangar, it could have gone up an embankment and gotten over a wall before slamming into homes, he said. . .
The hangar fire burned at a relatively high temperature because jet fuel was involved, fire officials said. The flames then spread to two hangars nearby and caused minor damage.
The intensity of the fire and the collapsed hangar made it hard to access the wreckage of the plane or read its tail number, making it difficult to identify those on board, sources told The Times.
My condolences go out to the families of those killed in this accident. People die every day in all sorts of ways. We don't have the time or emotional energy to invest in every death. But we should be respectful to those who are immediately impacted and then review our own lives to be sure we're doing what's really important with people we really love.