UPDATE: Two Civil Air Patrol planes and a U.S. Customs and Border Protection helicopter are scheduled are joining the search today, Nov. 14.
Steep terrain, heavily forested areas and low temperatures with snow are adding challenges to the ground search.
COLVILLE - Crews continued to search Wednesday for a pilot and plane missing since Nov. 11 from the Colville area.
A single aircraft from the Washington Air Search and Rescue, a volunteer pilot search group, flew over areas west of Colville. Visibility was clear at 5,000 feet, though visibility was lower closer to the ground.
Pilot Terry Coleman, 67, Colville, took off around noon Monday in his Cessna 182 Skylane plane to fly around the Colville area for about an hour. He did not return.
Other search aircraft are being staged at the Deer Park Airport, 50 miles south of Colville. All decisions about flying will be made based on conditions and crew safety, said the state Department of Transportation, which is coordinating the search.
Ground crews continued to focus their search efforts between Colville and the Ione/Sullivan Lake area. Aid came from several agencies, including the U.S. Border Patrol; Stevens, Spokane and Pend Oreille counties’ sheriff’s offices, and the U.S. Forest Service.
Coleman did not file a formal flight plan, nor was he required to do so, said the transportation department. Based on where he was believed to be flying, crews have narrowed the search to the northeast near Ione and nearby Sullivan Lake.
His plane had an emergency locator beacon onboard, but no signal has been detected.
Anyone who sees the plane is asked to call 911 immediately. Non-urgent tips can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or a newly established tip line, 360-410-0461.
Search efforts will be suspended for the day when it becomes dark.