Lincoln County Coverage

Dec 20, 2012 3:09 PM by KAJ News Staff

Details emerging in fatal Libby plane crash

LIBBY - The head of a welding company hoping to bring new life to the Libby area was killed in a plane crash Tuesday evening.

CEO of Stinger Welding, Carl Douglas, and his passenger John Smith were heading to Libby from Coolidge Arizona in Douglas' twin-engine Beachcraft airplane when it went down.

The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office reports the two were scheduled to arrive at the Libby airport around midnight and when authorities learned the plane was missing, they contacted Civil Air Patrol, Montana Aeronautics, and the Federal Aviation Administration.

Sheriff Roby Bowe says the FAA was able to determine the last known position of the airplane according to their radar.

"And at that time we started activating David Thompson Search and Rescue and started covering some of the areas of last sightings of the airplane," Bowe explained.

Search crews found the wreckage in a remote area of Swede Mountain, with Bowe saying that the debris field stretched several hundred yards.

Searchers found the plane at around 8 p.m. on Wednesday, and soon found neither occupant had survived the impact of the crash.

The Lincoln County Coroner and the Sheriff's Office will recover the remains as soon as weather allows.

The cause of the crash is being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board.

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