Two California Women Killed In Small Plane Crash

Two California women were killed when a small plane trying to land at an airport in north-central Washington veered off the runway and burst into flames, authorities said Sunday.

The 1966 single-engine Mooney M20E was trying to land at the Tonasket Municipal Airport when the plane crashed around 9:20 p.m.
Saturday, said Ian Gregor, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman in the agency's Los Angeles office.

After veering off the runway, "the pilot powered up in what we think was an attempt to make a go-around," Gregor said.

"But the aircraft banked sharply and crashed and caught fire. Both occupants were killed."

Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers said the victims were a 78-year-old pilot and a 73-year-old passenger, both of Placerville, Calif., but did not release their identities.

The FAA also did not release the victims' names.

It was not immediately clear whether the plane's registered owner, Patricia Collins of Placerville, was on board the plane.

The aircraft had taken off from the Dorothy Scott Airport in Oroville, about 15 miles north of Tonasket near the Canadian border, about a half hour before the crash, Gregor said.

The plane was not in contact with air traffic controllers at the time of the crash, Gregor said.

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