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Search resumes for plane missing in Idaho

Published On: Dec 03 2013 09:57:47 AM MST
YELLOW PINE, Idaho. -

The following is a news release from the Idaho Transportation Department.

The search for a missing plane near Johnson Creek airport near Yellow Pine will resume Tuesday morning, as Idaho Army National Guard Lakota and Blackhawk helicopters left Boise around 8:20 a.m. today (Tuesday, Dec. 3) bound for Cascade.

The search was suspended for the evening yesterday because of inclement weather and lack of daylight. A ground-search party on track vehicles, ATVs and snowmobiles will be combing the area.

The white-and-maroon, 6-seat, BE-36 Beech Bonanza departed Baker City, Ore., after 11 a.m. Sunday, bound for the Burt Mooney airport in Butte, Mont. The plane reportedly carried five individuals. It lost radar and cell tower contact near Johnson Creek airstrip about 50 miles northeast of Cascade, Sunday afternoon.

Repeated helicopter attempts to fly into the area of the last known contact, about a mile east of Johnson Creek airstrip, were unsuccessful yesterday. Each time, the helicopter was turned back by poor weather.

The Civil Air Patrol and fixed-wing airplanes from the Idaho Transportation Department will join in the search today, concentrated within a five-mile radius of johnson Creek. The Valley County Sheriff's Office, from Cascade, is coordinating the ground search.

A flight restriction has been issued for all airplanes in the area from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Aircraft, other than those directly involved in the search, are restricted from flying below 10,500 feet above sea level, which is about 1,000 feet above mountain peaks in the area. This will keep the search-area canopy clear to search.