ALAMOSA, Colo. Searchers on Friday found a medical plane with three people aboard that had disappeared during a flight from Chinle, Ariz., to Alamosa, but it wasn't clear whether anyone survived the crash.
A Blackhawk helicopter crew was flying into the area in southern Colorado's San Juan Mountains to look for survivors, said Archuleta County Undersheriff John Weiss.
High winds and fog prevented an air search Friday morning, but the weather cleared enough around for the search to begin, Weiss said. The plane was spotted about 1:45 p.m.
Barbara Anne Smith, a Conejos County sheriff administrator, said an emergency locator transponder helped pinpoint the plane's location.
Flight controllers lost radio and radar contact with the twin-engine Beech King Air C-90A at 11:20 p.m. Thursday, said Mike Fergus, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman. Its last known location was about 20 miles southwest of Alamosa.
A pilot, flight nurse and paramedic were on the plane, Fergus said. FAA spokesman Ian Gregor originally said the plane took off from Phoenix, but later said the plane was headed from Chinle, Ariz., to Alamosa.
The plane is registered to Scenic Aviation Inc. out of Blanding, Utah, which operates an air ambulance service called Eagle Air Med Inc. Its crew were on their way to pick up a patient in Alamosa, said Dustin Duncan of the International Association of Air Medical Services, who was acting as a spokesman for the company.
"We're trying to be optimistic and hopeful because we're all colleagues, we're all in the same line of work and it could be any one of us," Duncan said.
Duncan said the company has a plane based out of Alamosa, but that the Chinle-based plane was en route to pick up a patient because the other plane was on a call.
Alamosa is about 160 miles southwest of Denver.