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Search for missing plane and six aboard resumes in Cleveland

Ice on Lake Erie will be broken to allow a sonar-equipped craft to search the lake floor.

By
Ed Adamczyk
A search resumed in Cleveland on Monday for a small plane that is believed to have crashed into Lake Erie with six people aboard. Screenshot by WJW-TV, Cleveland
A search resumed in Cleveland on Monday for a small plane that is believed to have crashed into Lake Erie with six people aboard. Screenshot by WJW-TV, Cleveland

CLEVELAND, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- Cleveland-area crews resumed the search for a small plane and its six occupants that went missing over Lake Erie on Dec. 29.

The Army Corps of Engineers is scheduled to break through the lake ice on Monday to allow the Underwater Marine Contractors' salvage craft to the search the bottom of the lake using sonar. Divers will investigate what appears to be a large section of debris on the lake floor, the city of Cleveland said, although it is unclear if the debris in question is related to the suspected plane crash.

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The interim director of the Port of Cleveland, Fred Szabo, said Friday that divers found what appear to be human remains on a seat from a plane, adding that the discovery was sent to the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner's Office for analysis.

The plane's cockpit voice recorder was also found, as well as more than 100 pieces of suspected debris from the plane, including the tail section.

The Cessna Citation 525 disappeared from radar screens shortly after takeoff in a snowstorm on Dec. 29 from downtown Cleveland's Burke Lakefront Airport. It was headed for Columbus. On board were the pilot, businessman John Fleming; his wife, two sons and two other passengers.

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