February 4, 2007--Posted at 9:30 pm CST, updated at 7:10 a.m. CST on 2/5/07, updated at 9:02 a.m. on 2/5/07, updated at 12:10 p.m. CST on 2/5/07, updated at 2:49 p.m. CST, updated 5:41 p.m. CST
Little Rock - The Arkansas Wing of the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) was activated by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center late Sunday afternoon to participate in the search for a light aircraft that went missing on a personal flight from Hornersville, Missouri to Alabama on Friday.
Meanwhile, K8 News has learned that the plane has been located this afternoon at a crash site in Jefferson County, Alabama, approximately 35 miles southwest of Birmingham.
Members of the CAP's 120th Composite Squadron in Jonesboro checked airports in extreme northeastern Arkansas to determine if the airplane may have stopped there, but no evidence of the plane was found.
Residents of Mississippi County who happened to notice any aircraft that appeared to be in trouble on Friday are asked to call the Civil Air Patrol at 888-876-1729.
The plane is believed to be a 1970 model Cessna 172K, registered by the FAA to 63-year-old Larry Masters of Hornersville. The aircraft is described as a "fixed wing, single engine" plane. Masters and his wife Suzanna, 45, were believed to be on board the plane.
This morning the CAP opened a mission base at Wing Headquarters in Little Rock and expects to use up to four aircraft to search the portion of the flight route that went through Arkansas. At least two local pilots will use the Jonesboro Municipal Airport as their base of operations in searching northeast Arkansas today. A CAP spokesman says CAP crews out of Little Rock, Hot Springs and Rogers are also assisting in the search, as are pilots in Missouri, Alabama and Florida.
The Civil Air Patrol is the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force and has actively participated in search and rescue and other emergency response activities in Arkansas since 1941.
Nationwide, CAP conducts about 85% of the inland search and rescue missions assigned by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center.
Also for more information about flight tracking and incidents check out these websites: