October 8, 2007 / 7:13 PM / 12 years ago

Plane missing with 10 aboard in Washington state

Air crews launched a search and rescue mission at daybreak on Monday for an airplane carrying up to 10 people that is believed to have crashed in a mountainous area of Washington state, a state official said. REUTERS/Graphics

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Air crews launched a search and rescue mission at daybreak on Monday for an airplane carrying up to 10 people that is believed to have crashed in a mountainous area of Washington state, a state official said.

Searchers are acting on information provided by a hunter who reported hearing an aircraft in distress around 45 miles west of Yakima, said Nisha Marvel, a spokeswoman for Washington State Department of Transportation.

The missing Cessna 208 Caravan had been flying to Washington from Boise, Idaho, on Sunday evening and was carrying eight to 10 people, including parachutists traveling to an event in western Washington, Marvel said.

While crews must comb rugged terrain in the Cascades mountain range, their efforts will be helped by favorable weather, she said.

“They should be able to fly the area and not have weather be a factor,” Marvel said.

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