Coast Guard Searching for Plane Missing Over Lake Erie

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A U.S. Coast Guard official says crews are in search-and-rescue mode, not recovery mode, as they look for a plane carrying six people that disappeared overnight shortly after takeoff from a Cleveland airport along Lake Erie’s shore.

Capt. Michael Mullen says Friday that authorities have “faint hints” but no strong pulse from an emergency locating transmitter, a beacon that could help find the plane.

Three children and three adults were aboard when the Columbus-bound aircraft disappeared from radar about 2 miles over the lake late Thursday. Why it vanished remained unclear. Searchers have found no sign of debris.

Mullen says snow squalls, higher seas and darkness made nighttime searching difficult. He says it would have been the pilot’s responsibility to determine whether it was safe to fly.

Authorities haven’t identified the travelers.