Second air crash victim named |

Second air crash victim named

The name of the female victim in Monday’s fatal plane crash in Nevada County was released by the California Department of Justice on Wednesday.

Regina Martha Fredericks, 56, was killed along with Edward Ross Castro, 51, when the Cessna 172K airplane crashed at 6:30 p.m. off Greenhorn Road, near the Nevada County Airport.

A Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said the San Jose couple had been staying in a cabin or vacation home in Grass Valley.

Castro and Fredericks originally flew into Nevada County Friday from Palo Alto. They flew back to Palo Alto Monday, but when they neared the Bay Area, Castro signaled the plane was having radio problems.

Air traffic controllers diverted the Cessna to Stockton, but Castro and Fredericks decided to cancel their flight plan and return to Grass Valley.

Castro made an “instrument approach,” meaning he was not able to see the runway but tried to land with the aid of gauges. After he missed that approach, he apparently tried again.

He broke off the second approach, too, and followed the airport’s procedure for aborting landings: To avoid Banner Mountain to the left, planes are supposed to bank to the right.

However, the Cessna likely was lower than the pilot thought, and it crashed into trees before hitting the ground, authorities said.

Thick fog on the ground at the time is being considered as the major factor in the crash, Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board officials said.

The safety board is expected to issue a report about the cause of the crash at the end of this week.

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