Search and rescue workers have been looking through rugged Idaho terrain for a lost plane just outside of Cascade, Idaho. The plane was carrying two residents of Glasgow and three members of their family.
Sheree Chalmers Smith, of Glasgow, and her husband Daniel Smith took off from Baker City, Ore., in the airplane piloted by Daniel Smith’s father, Dale Smith. Dale’s daughter, Amber Smith, and her fiancee, Jonathon Norton, were also on board the airplane.
The single-engine BE-36 Beech Bonanza, a smaller aircraft, reported an engine failure near Johnson Creek Airstrip around 3:30 p.m in Valley County, Idaho. The airstrip is about 50 miles northeast of Cascade. The Valley County Sheriff has been working with the Idaho Transportation Department, Idaho Army National Guard, the Forest Service, Idaho Fish and Game, Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security and with other volunteers and members of the family.
The search was was suspended Monday night due to bad weather and the failing daylight. A Lakota helicopter with the Idaho Army National Guard left Gowen Field in Boise had to turn back to base that evening. They were able to track an emergency locator transmitter (ELT). The signal is weak, but it was able to narrow the radius of the search from 800 miles to 60 miles.
The weather was favorable on Tuesday, which helped ground personnel be assisted by a small aircraft from the Civil Air Patrol and two helicopters from the Idaho National Guard. Search efforts have been complicated due to the terrain and communication challenges. Search and rescue efforts were suspended again on Tuesday evening due to lack of daylight for those scouring the area.
Around 40 search and rescue personnel were expected to continue their efforts Wednesday. Three more fixed wing aircraft, from the Civil Air Patrol, will join in.
The mother of Sheree Chalmers-Smith, Jenny Chalmers of Glasgow, said she is hopeful that they will find the missing plane.
“We are so thankful for the support and prayers from the community,” she said.