Two killed in plane crash near Garlock on Friday

Two killed in plane crash near Garlock on FridayBy LAURA Austin

News Review Staff Writer

A plane crashed Friday afternoon, killing two people. Kern County Sheriff and Fire Departments responded to the scene upon reports of a aircraft crash at 2:45pm. On arrival, the first responders found the remains of a crashed aircraft and a subsequent fire. Both occupants of the two-seater aircraft were killed.

The Kern County Coroner’s Office has identified one of the two people killed in the crash as a Hal Derwin Wood, 68, of Murrieta, California. The incident occurred at approximately 2:15 pm in the desert near an old airstrip Northeast of Garlock Road and West of Highway 395.

Eyewitnesses, who were camped in the vicinity, reported seeing a small aircraft flying at a very low altitude near their campsite. They stated that the small plane flew along the airstrip, made an abrupt turn, then winged over plunging into to the ground. It was also noted that the aircraft burst into flames shortly after it hit the ground. They observed the occupant did not appear to be near the burning wreckage.

There was an unofficial report stating that the aircraft may have stopped at Inyokern Airport for fuel shortly before.

The Federal Aviation Administration identified the aircraft as a single-engine Zenith STOL CH-701, according to The Bakersfield Californian.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash.

The identity of the second man killed in the crash is still unknown and pending further investigation. The Kern County Sheriff’s Office has closed off the area near the site.

Future details to be published as available.

Laura Austin Photo: Hal Derwin Wood, of Murrieta, California, was killed in a plane crash at this location near Garlock. Kern County rescue workers responded to the scene finding a mangled mass of metal that once was an experimental aircraft. Eyewitnesses witnessed the small aircraft plunge into the ground.

Story First Published: 2021-11-19