Federal investigators say a twin-engine private jet struck a cell phone tower near Crozet on Sunday night before it slammed into the side of Bucks Elbow Mountain in a crash that killed the pilot.
Area residents said the crash is about a quarter mile from the 1959 wreckage of a Piedmont Airlines DC-3 that killed 26 people.
The National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration joined Virginia State Police on the scene Monday in looking into the cause of the crash.
According to the NTSB, the Cessna 525 hit the tower near Saddle Hollow Road around 9 p.m. before crashing into the mountainside and bursting into flames.
State police said damage to the aircraft was substantial. Police said the pilot’s body was recovered and has been sent to the state medical examiner for positive identification.