Three people were killed when their single engine plane crashed in a remote part of the woods in Keating Township, Potter County this past Sunday, October 16th.
The three people listed were Rifat Tawig, 25. Cory Mijac, 18, and Benjamin Jeffries, 19, all of Ontario, Canada. The report did not identify which person was piloting the plane.
According to the Coudersport PSP, the plane wreckage was located by helicopter around 3:30PM on Monday. The wreckage was scattered for several hundred yards through the woods. All three people were declared dead at the scene by Potter County Coroner Kevin Dusenbury.
The investigation is now being handled by the FAA and the NTSB. The Tioga Freedomist extends our prayers to all connected to the decedents in this crash.
POTTER COUNTY- A downed plane was reported found after two days of searching, with no update released on the status of the pilot and two passengers that were on the plane.
A report of a downed plane came in on Sunday October 16th, around 10PM. A Land rescue crew was sent out immediately. Yesterday, searchers had zeroed in on Keating Township, off of Route 155.
Dean Predmore, Training & Operations Manager for Potter County Emergency Services, Potter and McKean Fire Departments, the PA DCNR and the Civil Air Patrol sent personnel to find the plane.
At 2:30PM, the Civil Air Patrol released this update:
Numerous local and state agencies are working today to locate an aircraft which was reported overdue last evening after failing to arrive at its destination in Saint Catharines, Ontario, Canada
According to initial reports, the Federal Aviation Administration in Cleveland Center contacted the McKean County 911 Center last evening after they lost radar and radio contact with a small aircraft near Keating Summit, Pa. The single engine Pipe Cherokee airplane was flying from Richmond (VA) International Airport in Virginia to St. Catharines Airport with three people on board when it changed course to avoid a thunderstorm. After the aircraft changed course, all contact with the aircraft was lost. Area fire departments and search and rescue teams combed the woods in the area for hours last night into early morning before regrouping to begin gain after daylight.
The Civil Air Patrol has now taken command of the operaton and they are joined by numerous local resources from Potter, McKean, Cameron and Elk counties.
Sometime after 9PM last night October 17th, the Civil Air Patrol Public Information Officer, Andrew Johnson, stated that the plane had been located near Keating Summit. Once the plane had been located, The Coudersport PSP took over the investigation.