Plane crash in W. Alaska, 'there are survivors'

Associated Press

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Authorities said there were survivors after a plane carrying at least 10 people crashed Friday night near the remote western Alaska village of Saint Marys.

"There are survivors and we are working our best to get them help," said Alaska State Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters. She said she had no confirmation of any fatalities and no immediate information on number of survivors or possible injuries.

" I just don't know what the status of the survivors (is)," she said.

Peters said she believed the plane carried 10 people but did not have an official count.

The single-engine, turboprop Cessna 208 was Era Alaska's Flight 373, said National Transportation Safety Board investigator Clint Johnson.

A man who answered the phone at Era Alaska's Saint Marys office said he couldn't provide any information. An Associated Press call to Era headquarters was not immediately returned. The commercial carrier serves Alaskan communities.

The plane had been reported missing Friday evening on a flight from Bethel to Saint Marys. An emergency locator beacon signal helped pinpoint the crash site about four miles east of the village, Johnson said.

Johnson said he believed a rescue crew from the village was the first to reach the crash site in an area he described as rolling hills.

Alaska troopers were responding with assistance from the Coast Guard, Peters said.

NTSB sending 2 investigators to scene Saturday. Federal Aviation Administration didn't immediately respond to an email requesting crash info.

The temperature in the area Friday night was about 18 degrees with visibility reported at about a mile.

Saint Marys is about 470 miles from Anchorage.