Pilot Reported Landing Gear Issues Before Fatal Crash South of Kern County

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The pilot killed in the crash of a small plane along a Los Angeles freeway last month had reported a problem with his landing gear, according to a preliminary report released by the National Transportation Safety Board.

The pilot, who was not identified, was the only person on board the twin-engine Cessna 337 Skymaster when it crashed around 12:30 p.m. on April 20.

Wreckage came to rest among trees on an embankment along Interstate 210 in the Sylmar area of the northern San Fernando Valley.

Shortly after takeoff from nearby Whiteman Airport, the pilot radioed that his landing gear had not fully retracted, the NTSB said.

The pilot said he intended to climb to 2500 feet and circle the airport.

The preliminary report indicated tower personnel approved his request. There were no further radio transmissions from the pilot.

The plane’s left wing struck a fence before the aircraft hit the ground.

The investigation is ongoing.