back to article Silicon Valley plane crash kills 3 Tesla employees

A small plane crashed into a residential neighborhood in Silicon Valley on Wednesday, killing the pilot and two passengers — all employees of Tesla Motors — and triggering a widespread electricity outage that cut power to thousands of homes as well as companies like Hewlett-Packard and Facebook. Amidst a shroud of early- …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    A terrible tragedy... but...

    ... if only they could've *permanently* knocked out Facebook...

  2. Nate H.

    Not that I'm a conspiracy theorist...

    Big Auto? Big Oil?

    My heart goes out to the families for their loss...

    My coat? The black one, that matches my hat and sunglasses.

    1. chr0m4t1c


      I was wondering how many of those 28,000 homes had electric vehicles and couldn't get to work the next day.

      I guess that's what happens when you spend half of your job thinking about contingency planning.

      Pass my coat while you're there, would you? It's the one with the copy of "I don't care if climate change is real or not, fossil fuels are still a finite resource" in the pocket. Ta.

  3. jake Silver badge

    (K)PAO, home of birds & bunnies ...

    I learned to fly out of Palo Alto Airport. My gut feeling is a bird strike took out the left engine, combined with a plane that had a heavier takeoff weight than the pilot was used to ... three people, luggage/other gear, and enough fuel to get to Los Angeles adds up in a hurry.

    Would explain both the hard-left turn when he should have been turning right to gain altitude over SF Bay, and the fact that he couldn't clear an 80 foot tower that far away from the runway. Even an experienced pilot (which he was, by all accounts) would have difficulty reacting to that situation fast enough to get himself out of trouble in clear skies, never mind heavy fog.

    We may never know for sure ... Rest in peace, guys.

    1. jake Silver badge

      I hate replying to myself, but ...

      I just heard audio from the East Palo Alto "Shot spotter" system on the local news ... It's a crap recording, but to me it sounds like they they probably did lose an engine.

      Life's a crap-shoot, live it like you love it.

  4. Neoc
    Thumb Down

    I can't help it...

    I know it's wrong, considering the cause - but I barked out a laugh at the news that "Tesla" caused a "power outage".

  5. Grumpy Fellow


    Taking off in the fog is a bad idea. I guarantee that the pilot knew that in his gut before he started down the runway. Every month the AOPA magazine prints at least one true story where a pilot knows they shouldn't take off, but they do anyway, and things go horribly wrong. It is sad to lose the pilot and passengers, but fortunate that the day care center that the plane fell onto was not full of kids.

    1. jake Silver badge

      @Grumpy Fellow

      "Taking off in the fog is a bad idea."

      Nah. I take off in the fog fairly regularly, it's not all that bad. Point the nose in the right direction, take off, and climb ... Fog is usually only a couple hundred feet deep, you're through it in seconds.

      Now LANDING in fog ... that I have never really enjoyed. Worst-case is landing in fog with a good crosswind (that would be you I'm talkin' about, (K)HAF) ... but pay attention to your instruments, and the approach plate for the airport you're flying into, and you'll be fine.

      "I guarantee that the pilot knew that in his gut before he started down the runway."

      I seriously doubt it.

  6. TimNevins

    Looks like the reason has been found

    His post(if genuine and authenticated) explains everything.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Austin -------------------------------------------------------------------> Palo Alto

      Different places. Hope this helps.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Its real all right

      I'm on a board ( and the users in Texas reported this, I watched it over the news companies net TV (live I think).

      IT angle: He was an embedded software engineer (ex-).

    3. dux

      wrong plane crash Timmy

      Tim - you are confused... this is an article about an accident involving Tesla employees... it has nothing to do with the plane crash in Austin.

  7. Martin Nicholls


    3 Tesla employees die in a plane crash, cue nutjob conspiracy theories.

    People die and accidents happen, y'know.

    Tesla employees can't live for eternity and have a sucky product. Where's my hydrogen burning car?

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters


    I reckon Palo Alto Airport Authorities should be looking for British passport holding ""aircraft engineers"" wearing chaps, spurs and a ten gallon hat on their cctv...

  9. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

    This is bad and sad news.

    I don't know if I could ever afford one of their cars or would buy one, but they've been good for the green wheels industry - you CAN be electric and sexy - and my impression is that they are a small operation with not many replaceable personnel. Particularly those using the company plane.

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