Officials said search crews located a debris field in the water. After about a 24-hour search, they said the Coast Guard declared there were no survivors.
ATLANTA — Three Georgians died after a plane crashed off of the coast of California Wednesday, officials said.
According to the Phoenix Air Group of Cartersville, its flight crew aboard a Learjet 36 aircraft went down in the water about a mile from San Clemente Island. It happened Wednesday morning around 7:40 when the aircraft didn’t make it back to the runway.
The U.S. Coast Guard said it conducted a search with the help of the Navy, Air Force, and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection. They combed 334 square miles. However, the results came up empty.
Phoenix Air identified the three employees as the following:
- Captain Eric Tatman of Marietta, Georgia
- 1st Officer Spencer Geerlings of Newnan, Georgia
- Systems Specialist Shane Garner of Taylorsville, Georgia
They said search crews located a debris field in the water. After about a 24-hour search, they said the Coast Guard declared there were no survivors Friday.
The plane went down while two Phoenix Air-owned aircraft were participating in a U.S. Navy training exercise; the other aircraft landed safely.
“Both aircraft were flying in a military restricted area as part of a carefully planned series of flight profiles supporting U.S. Navy fleet preparedness,” the company said in its news release.
The Coast Guard said the plane took off from Point Mugu Naval Air Station.
An investigation is still underway into the crash.