Crop duster hits power line, pilot killed

June 20, 2002|By MARIO RENTERÍA

Staff Writer

WESTMORLAND — A 52-year-old man was killed just after midnight today when the crop duster he was piloting crashed east of here.

Gregory G. Bewick was killed when the crop duster he was flying crashed into a field around 12:40 a.m. said Imperial County Sheriff's Office Coroner Deputy Henry Proo.

He said Bewick had an address out of Morro Bay but wasn't sure if that was where he resided. He said Bewick was not a Valley resident.


Proo said the accident happened after Bewick's plane clipped some utility wires while he was dusting crops.

The plane went down immediately, killing Bewick. The plane caught fire shortly after the impact but Proo said it appears Bewick was already dead.

The accident led to power outages in Brawley, Holtville, Imperial and Westmorland, according to Susie Carrillo, a spokeswoman for the Imperial Irrigation District. She said about 2,000 customers lost power. By 2 a.m. most of the electricity was restored.

Bewick was working for Val Air Co. Inc. out of Brawley. An autopsy will be performed Saturday to determine the cause of Bewick's death.

>> Staff Writer Mario Rentería can be reached at 337-3441.

>> Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez contributed to this story.

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