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A timeline of flight that crashed after losing contact, prompting military to scramble fighter jet

June 7, 2023  By The Associated Press

When a business jet failed to respond to air traffic control instructions, federal aviation officials say they reported the situation within minutes to a network that includes military, security and law enforcement agencies. Despite being out of contact on its ascent Sunday, the jet that took off in Tennessee continued toward Long Island, then turned back toward Virginia, where it slammed into a mountain, killing four people. The erratic flight path directly over the nation’s capital prompted the military to scramble fighter jets, causing a sonic boom heard in Washington, Maryland and Virginia.

Here’s a timeline of events related to the flight and crash:

June 4

1:13 p.m.


Cessna Citation 560 (N611VG) takes off from Elizabethton Municipal Airport in Elizabethton, Tennessee, for Long Island’s MacArthur Airport. Air traffic control loses communication during ascent.

1:28 p.m.

Last ATC communication attempt with the business jet, which was at 31,000 feet (9,449 meters).

1:36 p.m.

The Federal Aviation Administration reports the situation to the Domestic Events Network, which includes the military, national security, homeland security and other law enforcement agencies.

2:33 p.m.

Business jet overflies Long Island MacArthur Airport at 34,000 feet (10,363 kilometers).

3:01 p.m. to 3:21 p.m.

One or more people identifying themselves as military fighter pilots are captured on air traffic control audio trying to make contact with the business jet, according to recordings on

3:20 p.m.

NORAD F-16 fighter aircraft intercept the business jet.

The F-16s responding to the unresponsive plane over Washington and northern Virginia were authorized to travel at supersonic speed and people around the region reported hearing a sonic boom.

3:23 p.m.

Business jet begins to descend.

3:32 p.m.

Business jet crashes near Montebello, Virginia, about 60 miles (97 kilometers) southwest of Charlottesville.

3:50 p.m.

Virginia State Police are notified of a possible aircraft crash in the Staunton/Blue Ridge Parkway region and search efforts begin.

8 p.m.

First responders reach the remote crash site on foot and Virginia State Police report that no survivors were found.

Sources: Federal Aviation Administration, National Transportation Safety Board, North American Aerospace Defense Command, Virginia State Police,

News from © Canadian Press Enterprises Inc., 2021


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