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Cessna Golden Eagle crashes and burns into Calif. mountain

A twin-engine Cessna 421C Golden Eagle operated by Tri-Wings LCC of Reno, Nev., tail number N421W, crashed and burned northeast of Truckee, Calif. 10 miles west of Verdi Peak, near Boca Reservoir in Sierra County, Calif. on Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 1:30 p.m. local time according reports published by the Aviation Safety Network, KOLO-TV, YubaNet, and other news sources.

View of Verdi Peak from the eastern flank of Thomas Peak, July 28, 2012.
View of Verdi Peak from the eastern flank of Thomas Peak, July 28, 2012.
Wikipedia Creative Commons - Public Domain
Cessna 421C Golden Eagle, N421W, seen at Montgomery Field Airport (MYF) on May 9, 2009. This is the same plane which later crashed into a California mountain on Thursday, May 16, 2013.
Chris Kennedy via

Witnesses reported seeing a fireball after the aircraft impacted wooded terrain in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, located in Nev., near the Calif. border.

The pilot was the only occupant of the aircraft, which was traveling from Santa Clara, Calif. to Reno, Nev. Just prior to the accident, he had contacted NorCal TRACON air traffic approach control and indicated a heading of 040, almost due northeast, saying that his plane was in a spin. That was the last recorded radio transmission.

The name of the pilot has not yet been released pending notification of next of kin.

Both the FAA and NTSB are investigating this fatal aviation accident. The Sierra County (Calif.) Sheriff’s Office has assumed command of the plane crash site. The cause of the accident is not known at this time.

Verdi Peak is one of three summits in the Ruby Mountains of Elko County, Nev. at an elevation of 11,074 feet.

The Cessna 421C Golden Eagle is an executive commuter aircraft developed in October 1975, and powered by two Continental GTSIO-520-Ls or Continental GTSIO-520-Ns engines, each developing 375 horsepower. The plane carries a crew of 1 or 2 persons, and up to 6 passengers. Maximum speed is 295 mph, cruising speed is 276 mph, range is 1,712 miles, service ceiling 30,200 feet, and rate of climb 1,940 feet per minute.

We extend our sincere condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of the pilot who perished in this fatal accident.

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