A private jet crashed Monday night near San Diego, seconds after the pilot was heard screaming, “Oh s–t! Oh s–t!” in air traffic control audio — leaving fiery wreckage on a suburban street and knocking out power to hundreds of homes, according to authorities and reports.
The Learjet 35A, a twin-engine business jet that seats up to eight, disintegrated on impact after crashing in the Bostonia area of El Cajon shortly after 7 p.m. Monday, the Times of San Diego reported.
No survivors have been reported.
Audio posted by the news outlet captured the final minute of the doomed flight as the air traffic controller clears the pilot to land on Runway 17.
The pilot then informs the tower that he wants to switch to visual flight rules and asks for permission to land on Runway 27 instead.
“IFR (Instrument Flight Rules) cancellation received. You can overfly the field, make left traffic, Runway 27 Right, Runway 27 Right, clear to land,” the controller says.
But something goes horribly wrong as the plane prepares to land at Gillespie Field in rainy conditions.
“Oh, s—! Oh s—!” the pilot is heard screaming in the gut-wrenching audio.
The plane is registered to Med Jet LLC of El Cajon, an air ambulance company, according to FlightAware.com.
A radio-controlled plane aficionado posted Nest camera footage showing the jet exploding in a blinding flash of light, the news outlet reported.
“My wife and I heard a loud thunderous noise, and I knew something was wrong,” he wrote.
Fire Chief Don Butz told reporters that “there is very little left of the aircraft. We weren’t able to find any survivors.”
A spokeswoman for John Wayne Airport in Orange County confirmed that the jet took off at 6:56 p.m. but had no details on the number of people aboard.
Nanci Watt was in her nearby home at the time of the crash.
“I just hit the floor and everything’s black,” she told the Times of San Diego, referring to the power outage.
Watt called her husband, Ed, who was at work, and then her son nearby.
“I didn’t know if there was going to be a big fire and we’d have to evacuate. We have two dogs. What do we take?” she told the paper. “We were shaking.”
The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are handling the investigation.