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ANCHORAGE, ALASKA-A mid-air collision involving two planes was reported to the Alaska State Troopers Friday at about 4 in the afternoon. The accident involved two small commercial aircraft. One, a Cessna 207 operated by Ryan Air, the other, a Cessna 208 Caravan operated by Grant Aviation.
The incident occurred approximately 6 miles north of Nightmute. Alaska State Troopers and medics responded to the scene by helicopter.
The Grant Aviation Cessna Caravan crashed and burned in the incident. Troopers were unable to recover a body. Megan Peters of the Alaska State Troopers reported that “there were no signs of life,” in or near the wreckage. Only the pilot, Scott Veal was aboard the aircraft at the time of the accident.
The other aircraft, Ryan Air’s Cessna 207, although badly damaged, was able to land safely. Pilot Kirsten Sprague, a resident of Idaho, was able to exit and communicate with other aircraft flying above the scene. It was one of these, another Ryan Air aircraft, that was able to relay to Ryan Air the incident, who immediately reported the crash to Federal and State authorities. Sprague was the only person aboard that aircraft as well.
Both aircraft were bound for Bethel. Sprague was headed there from Tununuk, and Veal was headed that way from Toksook Bay.
The cause of the collision is unknown. Weather conditions at the time of the incident was reported to be overcast, one thousand foot ceiling and no rain and fog.
Clint Johnson, from the National Transportation Safety Board will be conducting further investigations at the site today.