UPDATE: 1 Assumed Dead After Car Plunges Off Airport Runway Into Canal Near Tracy
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TRACY (CBS13) — A man with three passengers lost control and drove his BMW into a canal late Thursday night, and one of the passengers is presumed dead after never re-emerging from the water.
Investigators say it appears 32-year-old Eric Olsen was on a Tracy Municipal Airport runway when he lost control of his BMW 328i, raced through the fence and then slammed the car in the Delta Mendota Canal just feet from the end of the runway at about 11:40 p.m..
“Three people were able to escape from the canal and one occupant is still missing,” Tracy Police Sgt. Luis Mejia said.
Olsen and a pair of passengers managed to pull themselves out of the water. But one of their friends was left behind and presumed dead.
After crews pulled the car from the canal, police called in a special crew to help locate the missing man’s body.
They spent two hours Friday taking underwater pictures of the mile-and-half stretch of water.
Police say they found something where the canal meets Tracy Boulevard, but there was no immediate word if divers will recover what could be the remains of the missing passenger.
On Olsen’s Facebook page he lists his occupation as the chief operating officer at Sky View Aviation. A pilot at the airport tells CBS13 the car’s passengers are all flight school students with access to the runway.
Crime scene investigators took pictures inside the office. No one with the school wanted to answer questions from CBS13.
Police say the passenger who is presumed dead was visiting from Europe. His name hasn’t been released.
Olsen was arrested on a charge of vehicular manslaughter. Police are also investigating to see if alcohol was involved.