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Local News

Pilot Dies in Ultralight Crash at Goleta Apartment Complex

Motorized aircraft slammed into a carport and car at the Willow Springs Apartments about five minutes after takeoff

The pilot of an ultralight motorized hang glider was killed Tuesday in a crash at the Willow Springs Apartments in Goleta. Click to view larger
The pilot of an ultralight motorized hang glider was killed Tuesday in a crash at the Willow Springs Apartments in Goleta. (Mike Eliason / Santa Barbara County Fire Department photo)

The pilot of an ultralight motorized hang glider was killed Tuesday in a crash at the Willow Springs Apartment complex in Goleta. 

The aircraft slammed through a carport, off the roof of a SUV and landed on a parked car, and emergency responders got the call at 10:09 a.m., according to Santa Barbara County Fire Department Capt. Dave Zaniboni. 

Residents of the apartment complex attempted to revive the man, who was still partially strapped into the aircraft, but responders pronounced the 45-year-old male pilot dead. 

Willow Springs Apartments is located at 60 Willow Springs Road in Goleta, near Hollister Avenue and Los Carneros Road. 

Sheriff's Department Coroner's Office personnel responded to the scene as did a county helicopter, which reportedly took photos from above the crash site. 

Zaniboni said the pilot took off from the Santa Barbara Airport at 10:04 a.m. and responders got the report of the crash just five minutes later.

The pilot flew toward the complex from the north side, near Los Carneros, before crashing, he said. 

An ultralight motorized hang glider slammed into a carport and a vehicle was Tuesday at the Willow Springs Apartments in Goleta, killing the pilot. Click to view larger
An ultralight motorized hang glider slammed into a carport and a vehicle was Tuesday at the Willow Springs Apartments in Goleta, killing the pilot. (Mike Eliason / Santa Barbara County Fire Department photo)

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the crash.

Santa Barbara County Fire units are expected to be on the scene all day, Zaniboni said.  

The pilot's name was not released Tuesday and likely would not be until Wednesday, Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said. 

He was identified as Santa Barbara man Matthew Erwin Wilson Wednesday morning. 

Noozhawk staff writer Sam Goldman reported from the scene.

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

The pilot of an ultralight motorized hang glider was killed Tuesday in a crash at the Willow Springs Apartments in Goleta. Click to view larger
The pilot of an ultralight motorized hang glider was killed Tuesday in a crash at the Willow Springs Apartments in Goleta. (Mike Eliason / Santa Barbara County Fire Department photo)
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