Pilot, 80-year-old Vietnam vet, reportedly survives Palo Alto plane crash

Photo of Amy Graff

A small plane crashed near the Palo Alto Airport on Sept. 13, 2021.

A small plane crashed near the Palo Alto Airport on Sept. 13, 2021.

KTVU

An 80-year-old Vietnam Vet was reportedly the pilot and only person aboard a small plane that crashed in Palo Alto on Monday afternoon after coming into contact with power lines, KTVU reported. 

KTVU didn’t share the pilot’s name but interviewed his daughter who said that her father “flew Navy aircraft for years and likely relied on his muscle memory in making Monday’s difficult landing.”

BREAKING: A small plane crashed near the Palo Alto Airport, authorities confirm. No details yet on how many people were on board. Details here. https://t.co/IxDTbMBCgQ pic.twitter.com/AxQtcX2nxh

— NBC Bay Area (@nbcbayarea) September 13, 2021

A twin-engine Beechcraft Baron struck power lines northeast of the Palo Alto Airport about 1:50 p.m. local time today, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

The FAA will release the aircraft’s tail number once investigators verify it at the scene. All civil aircraft are registered with the aviation authority and given a unique tail number. 

The incident is under investigation by the FAA and National Transportation and Safety Board, which will be in charge of the investigation and provide updates. 

Images posted online by NBC Bay Area showed the plane in an open space dotted with brush. 

The Palo Alto Airport (PAO) is on the edge of San Francisco Bay, 30 miles south of San Francisco. 

It’s a general aviation field owned and operated by the city of Palo Alto, and according to the airport’s website, it’s the busiest single runway airport in California.

This is a developing story. Check back with SFGATE for updates.

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