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Plane missing with five aboard

Posted: Sunday, July 06, 2003

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) The Coast Guard resumed its search early Friday for a small plane with five people aboard that disappeared while trying to land in Sitka.

The twin-engine Cessna 421 was traveling from Prince Rupert, British Columbia, to Anchorage when it reported problems with the aircraft's doors about 5:15 p.m. Thursday, said Petty Officer Russ Tippets of the U.S. Coast Guard in Juneau.

The pilot decided to make an emergency landing in Sitka, but contact was lost on its final approach.

A Coast Guard helicopter from Sitka failed to find any sign of the plane Thursday night. A ground search also was unsuccessful.

The search in mountainous, heavily wooded terrain northeast of Sitka resumed shortly after 5 a.m. Friday.

''The weather's good in Sitka, but in the mountains where we're searching, it's heavily fogged in,'' Petty Officer Mitchell Fletcher said.

The plane is registered to Bowl Aviation LLC, a business in Colorado Springs, Colo., but details about the people on board were not immediately available.

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