A mid-morning crash at the Oakdale Airport had one confirmed fatality and emergency crews and law enforcement personnel on scene.
The aircraft went down about 10:30 a.m. and had one person on board. Police were in the preliminary stages of the investigation Saturday morning, March 11 and had not yet released the type of aircraft or the identity of the deceased pilot.
Witnesses said they saw the small aircraft approaching the airport from the opposite direction of the normal landing pattern and then it went down. The plane came to rest near a hangar and also caught a nearby pick-up truck on fire.
Alan Alcock of Oakdale was working in his hangar at the airport on Saturday when the incident occurred.
“I saw it take off about an hour before, heard it buzzing around a few times,” he said. “Then all of a sudden I hear this big bang, I thought that was odd, I came out and it was all on fire.”
Oakdale Police, Stanislaus Consolidated Fire Protection District units, Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department personnel and Oak Valley Ambulance crews were all on scene.
Authorities received multiple 9-1-1 calls of the crash, with a plume of black smoke visible from the city.
The airport is on Laughlin Road, off Sierra, about three miles outside Oakdale.
Look for further updates as information becomes available and read the full story in the March 15 issue of The Leader.