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Saturday, Dec 08 2012 03:16 PM

Plane goes down in fog, pilot walks away

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Ken Hetge is pictured with a Citabria aircraft that crashed just east of Steuber Road, southeast of the City of Tehachapi on Dec. 7. Tehachapi News photo by Ed Gordon

Ken Hetge and his crew are pictured disasemblying the Citabria that crashed just east of Steuber Road, southeast of the City of Tehachapi on Dec. 7. Tehachapi News photo by Ed Gordon

Workers dismantle a plane that crashed in a field southeast of the City of Tehachapi on Friday, Dec. 7. Tehachapi News photo by Ed Gordon

The unidentified pilot of a two seat Citabria aircraft was overtaken by the fog on approach to Tehachapi Airport on Friday and went down about two miles from the runway just east of Steuber Road, southeast of the City of Tehachapi.

The accident occurred at about 5:30 p.m. on Dec. 7.

According to Ken Hetge, whose crew was on scene disassembling the plane on Saturday afternoon to remove it from the field, the fact that the area had been plowed contributed to the destruction of the aircraft.

"The plane could have landed in the field with no problem had the field not been plowed," Hetge said.
He said the wheels got caught in the ruts from plowing and flipped the aircraft over.

The pilot, who would not give his name, is said to be from Tehachapi. He walked away with no injuries.

The Citabria is a light single-engine, two-seat, fixed conventional gear airplane typically used for flight training, utility and personal use. A feature of the aircraft is its ability to sustain aerobatic stresses from +5g to -2g. Its name spelled backwards, "airbatic", reflects this.

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