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Report of plane on fire in Schoharie County triggers large but fruitless search

Report of plane on fire in Schoharie County triggers large but fruitless search

Schoharie County Sheriff's Office still seeking clues but unsure what, if anything, happened
Report of plane on fire in Schoharie County triggers large but fruitless search
Photographer: Shutterstock

JEFFERSON — A report of a small plane on fire in the skies over the Schoharie County town of Jefferson prompted a large search that yielded no clues.

The county Sheriff’s Office is hoping someone will call in with additional information, but as of Thursday afternoon, officers still didn’t know what if anything happened.

The report came in around 8:53 p.m. Tuesday; the caller lost sight of the burning plane beyond a tree line and thought it might have landed or crashed. A massive response by emergency personnel that evening included a Lifenet helicopter turned up nothing.

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On Wednesday morning, the search continued with searchers on the ground, New York State Police helicopters at treetop level above and door-to-door interviews of potential witnesses. A large area was covered but no plane was found, nor any debris, fire damage or signs of a crash.

A smoke plume was investigated by state forest rangers and found to be a controlled burn not involving an airplane.

With no reports of any missing persons or planes, the search was suspended.

The Jefferson Fire Department, Sheriff’s Office, state police, Jefferson Ambulance, county Office of Emergency Services, county Search and Rescue, county Medics, Lifenet and state forest rangers all were involved in the response.

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