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Crash Cleanup Could Take One Week

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

Investigators continue searching for a child missing after a military fighter jet crashed Monday into homes in San Diego's University City neighborhood. The pilot ejected safely but three people were killed in one house.  KPBS Environmental Reporter Ed Joyce has more on military cleanup efforts.

The F/A-18D Hornet crashed into homes on Cather Street, about two miles from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar as the pilot was returning from a training flight.

There was little sign of the plane in the smokey ruins, but a piece of cockpit sat on the roof of one home, and a charred jet engine lay on the street.

Authorities say the wreckage was toxic and about 20 homes were evacuated.

Corporal Travis Easter with MCAS Miramar says crews will spend the next five to seven days cleaning up debris.

Easter: We take our environmental responsibility seriously. And this will remain as long at it takes to ensure the site poses no threat to the local citizens.

He says crews are working as quickly as possible to remove any harmful material.
    
Corporal Easter says the investigation is continuing into the cause of the crash.

It's the fourth crash involving an FA-18 in San Diego since 2002.
 
Ed Joyce, KPBS News.

 

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