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Updated: Plane down in Paradise; two hospitalized

From the Top 10 at, January 3-9 series
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PARADISE – A small twin-engine airplane made an emergency landing just west of Paradise on Tuesday morning, with both occupants taken to the hospital.

Sanders County Sheriff Tom Rummel said the plane went down just before 9:30 a.m. between the railroad tracks and the Clark Fork River just west of town.

The pilot and passenger, the only occupants of the plane, were able to walk away from the crash, but were taken to Clark Fork Valley Hospital in Plains.

“This was a good ending to a bad deal,” Rummel said. “The plane itself is trashed.”

Rummel said the site of the crash was secured by deputies, and an investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board was called in to determine the cause of the crash.

Marlin Cooper, assistant chief of the Plains-Paradise Rural Fire Department, said as a pilot himself, he knows most of the other pilots in the area but didn’t recognize the brand of the plane. The cabin area and wings remained intact but the plane appears to be totaled, he said.

Rummel said he believed the plane was on its way from Missoula to Seattle. The Federal Aviation Administration’s records show the aircraft, a Softex-Aero V-24L, is registered to Summit International American Ltd. in Bellevue, Washington.

Missoulian reporter Dillon Kato contributed to this story.

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Outlying communities, transportation, history and general assignment

Outlying communities, transportation, history and general assignment reporter at the Missoulian

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