Debris found in Lake Huron of missing plane from St. Ignace
U.S. Coast Guard has suspended a search for a missing plane that left St. Ignace airport early Saturday after debris was located in Lake Huron, officials said.
Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Sault Ste. Marie command center were notified by Mackinac County dispatch at 1:40 a.m. of a possible aircraft in Lake Huron off the runway at Mackinac County Airport.
An employee at the airport reported the plane departing 10 minutes earlier on its way to Mackinac Island but was unable to make contact with the plane to confirm its arrival.
Police believe the pilot was the only person onboard.
An urgent marine information broadcast was issued and crews from Coast Guard Station St. Ignace and Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City launched a search overnight.
A debris field and a sheen was found in the water near the airport. Michigan State Police Dive team located part of a single prop Piper Lance in 100 feet of water.
U.S. Coast Guard Sector St. Ignace Lt. Dan Peters said the search was called off about 9:50 a.m. Saturday even though they have not located the plane. Peters said a wing and other debris were found in Lake Huron.
Mackinac County Sheriff's Department is handling the investigation.