Seven Killed As Plane Crashes Into Chilean Volcano
SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) _ A chartered plane crashed into the snowy flank of a volcano in southern Chile, killing all seven people aboard, air force rescue officials said Friday.
The chartered, two-engine Piper Seneca II was reported missing late Wednesday, after taking off from Temuco, a city 415 miles south of Santiago.
Rescue helicopters were unable to find and reach the crash site, on the Villarica Volcano about 60 miles south of Temuco in the Andes mountains, until Friday noon.
″The crew and passengers died in the accident,″ said a communique issued by the air force’s rescue service.
Santiago television stations broadcast images of the crash site which showed the plane’s charred remains strewn across an icy slope 6,900 feet above sea level.
The victims were Francisco Comandari, president of a Santiago-based bank, Banco del Pacifico; his 13-year-old son and a 12-year-old daughter; the bank’s general manager, Eran Fernandez; his wife and 1 1/2 -year-old son; and pilot Juan Bernstein, son of a well-known Chilean diplomat.
The cause of the crash was under investigation.