Officials probe whether fourth person was aboard jet that crashed near Lake Tahoe


The Federal Aviation Administration said Tuesday a fourth person may have been killed in the airplane crash near Lake Tahoe on Monday, one more death than authorities previously reported.

“The initial report we got indicated there were three people on board,” FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said. “Subsequently, we learned that paperwork indicated there may have been four people on board.”

The FAA is “awaiting word from the coroner” to confirm the number of people that were in the twin engine aircraft at the time of the crash, Gregor said.

None of the victims had been publicly identified as of Tuesday afternoon.

The aircraft was approaching a runway at Truckee-Tahoe Airport north of Lake Tahoe shortly after 1 p.m. Monday when it slammed into a wooded area near the second hole of nearby Ponderosa Golf Course, killing everyone on board, officials from the Nevada County sheriff’s office and police department said at a press conference Monday afternoon.

The plane, a Bombardier CL 600 aircraft, was registered to Tarco Aircraft Funding, based in Florida, and flight records show it departed Coeur d’Alene, Idaho at 11:45 a.m. on Monday.

The aircraft can hold up to 14 passengers and two crew members. Officials have not disclosed the operator of the jet or the full travel itinerary of the plane, which was scheduled to land at 1:18 p.m.

Eyewitnesses said smoke was still billowing from the crash site Monday evening.

One of the airplane’s wheels smashed through the garage of a nearby home, Caroline Bechdolt, a manager of Ponderosa Golf Course, told The Chronicle.

No bystanders were harmed in the crash, sheriff’s officials said in a statement.

Nora Mishanec is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: Twitter: @NMishanec