A single-engine 1988 Mooney M-20L plane crashed into a San Diego Costco parking lot around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, killing an 80-year-old passenger and seriously injuring the 52-year-old pilot.
The 1988 Mooney M-20L plane is believed to have lost power shortly after take-off from nearby Montgomery Field, authorities said.
“She said she lost power and she was going down and that was it,” helicopter pilot Vince Carter told KFMB-TV.
The plane clipped the roof of a nearby Target store in the Kearny Mesa neighborhood and knocked down a light pole, police Lt. Steve Behrendt said.
The plane spun around and crash landed in the Costco parking lot in a loading dock area away from the main entrances. Thankfully, no cars were there, city fire spokesman Lee Swanson said.
The plane caught fire, but 15 to 20 people were standing around the plane, some with fire extinguishers, and they extinguished the fire before it reached the plane’s fuel tank.
“Several of the rescuers who pulled the people from the plane received some minor injuries, minor burns,” Lt. Steve Behrendt, of the San Diego Police Department, told KUSI News.
They are being treated at the UCSD Medical Center.
The plane appeared to be mostly intact, but its nose and one wing were torn up.
“The front of the passenger compartment, the engine is essentially broken off,” city fire spokesman Lee Swanson said. “The landing gear is off; it’s lying flat on its belly. There’s some debris for several yards in each direction.”
The National Transportation Safety Board is conducting an investigation into the cause of the crash.