COBB COUNTY, Ga. — The National Transportation Safety Board has cleared the scene of a deadly Cobb County plane crash that killed an Atlanta-based pilot and destroyed a Marietta family’s home.
The wreck happened along Vistawoods Lane just after 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Crews spent the day Saturday removing the wreckage. Officials told Channel 2’s Nicole Carr that several key pieces of evidence were intact.
"We do know (the pilot) was talking to air traffic control," NTSB senior air safety investigator Leah Read said.
By later Saturday night, the wreckage was hauled off and Carr was able to get a close look at the home destroyed in the deadly crash. Symbols of faith are charred but standing.
Members of the family who lived in the home said they were at church at the time of the crash Friday.
“Everything just kind of went in slow motion,” witness Trey Richardson told Carr.
The NTSB continues to pieces together what went wrong Friday night. The Cessna Citation 1 departed Cincinnati shortly after 6 p.m. and disappeared from radar around 7:30 p.m.
"Up until the sound of the sirens I didn't think anything about it," witness Scott Patterson told Carr.
Patterson is one of the NTSB’s key witnesses. He is a pilot who thought told Carr he thought he was witnessing a stunt from some sort of air show when the crash happened.
“I noticed that he started into a barrel roll. From that he went into 90 degree back turn coming across and then the nose dropped. Started to spiral coming towards the ground,” Patterson said.
It's an account the NTSB was recording Saturday. We also know more about the pilot's communication with air traffic control
"He did say he was having a problem with his autopilot," Read told Carr.
What's believed to be cockpit recorder is expected to offer critical information.
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"We did look in the back and there appears to be a recorder. We will be pulling that and sending it our recorder lab," Read said.
The wreckage will be taken to the NTSB reconstruction facility in Griffin.
The NTSB notes everything from flight experience to health will be reviewed as they examine the plane.
The pilot will be identified by law enforcement officials. His family members made it clear that they did not want to speak Saturday.
Cox Media Group