Salmon River, ID Private Plane Crashes, July 1991


Salmon Natonal Forest, Idaho (AP) -- A single-engine airplane crashed in Idaho's Salmon National Forest Tuesday, killing the five people believed to be aboard, authorities said.
It was the second light plane crash in less than 24 hours in the national forest. A crash to the east Monday afternoon killed all four people aboard.
Officials said the latest plane to go down crashed near the Bernard Creek Guard Station along the famed Middle Fork of the Salmon River in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness.
The area is not accessible by vehicle, and the Valley County Sheriff's Department was flying in deputies to investigate the crash. Private pilots were asked to avoid the area.
Mitch Baker of the Federal Aviation Administration in Seattle said the Cessna 206, operated by Wilderness Aviation, Inc., based on Salmon, left Salmon shortly after 8 a.m. Tuesday.
The crash occurred about 90 minutes later as the pilot was taking off from the Flying 'B' Ranch wilderness airstrip to return to Salmon, Barker said.
The cause of the crash was unknown.
The fatalities are:
Pilot DOUG HARSON, Salmon.
THOMAS LOATS, Idaho Falls.
JEFF HAYTER, Pocatello.
JOYCE LARSON, Pocatello.
JACK LARSON, Pocatello.
The crash triggered a fire that was burning through sage brush and into timber. Salmon National Forest spokesman Steve Till said 16 smoke-jumpers had been dispatched to battle that 50-acre blaze.
On Monday afternoon, four people died in the fiery crash of their light plane on Twelve Mile Creek about 14 miles south of Salmon and about 43 miles east of Tuesday's crash.
An investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board was at the scene. Fire fighters controlled the 40-acre fire started by the crash on Tuesday morning.

Twin Falls Times News Idaho 1991-07-24