US authorities launched F-16 fighter jets to intercept a private plane that violated airspace over the Washington DC area and later crashed into a mountainous area in southwestern Virginia. Four people were aboard the Cessna Citation, according to CNN, which cited an unnamed source.
Police said rescuers found no survivors on board the plane. US fighter jets have caused a sonic boom over Washington DC, to try and reach the light aircraft. The plane that crashed was registered to a Florida-based company. John Rumpel, who runs the company, told the New York Times that his daughter, two-year-old granddaughter, her nanny and the pilot were aboard the plane. They were returning to their home in East Hampton, Long Island, after visiting his home in North Carolina, he said.
Small plane enters Washington’s “no fly zone”: F-16 fighters in action, then crash in Virginia. Here is the flight path
The U.S. military had attempted to make contact with the pilot, who did not respond, until the Cessna subsequently crashed near the George Washington National Forest in Virginia, the North American Aerospace Defense Command said in a statement. Norad). “Norad planes were permitted to travel at supersonic speeds and a sonic boom may have been heard by residents of the region,” the statement said, adding that the NORAD planes also used flares in an attempt to get the pilot’s attention.