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Probe continues into plane crash that killed 1, critically injured pilot in Fallbrook

Courtesy of North County Fire Protection District
North County Fire Protection District firefighters at the scene of the crash at Altman Plants nursery near Fallbrook Airpark, July 23, 2022.

The investigation is continuing Sunday into the crash of a single-engine, vintage military-style plane that killed the passenger and left the pilot critically injured.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board were sending investigators to the crash site, which was located less than a mile south of the county-owned Fallbrook Airpark.

The crash occurred just after 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Altman Plants nursery, 2575 Olive Hill Road, Capt. John Choi of the North County Fire Protection District said.

A witness told the San Diego County Sheriff's Department they saw the two-seater plane crash shortly after takeoff from Fallbrook Airpark.

The body of a back-seat passenger was recovered from inside the plane, the captain said.

The pilot was taken to Palomar Hospital trauma center in critical condition.

There was no word on what caused the crash, which also damaged some of the nursery's products.

No injuries or fire were reported on the ground.

Anyone with photos or videos of the crash was asked to email them to