Plane missing after leaving Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport

Cessna fails to reach Hampton Roads Executive Airport

By Alexandra Fruin - Producer

CHESAPEAKE, Va. - Crews continued to search the Great Dismal Swamp Friday for a plane from South Florida that didn't reach its Virginia destination.

State police said the search was launched Thursday after the Cessna took off from Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport for the Hampton Roads Executive Airport in Chesapeake but never made it. There was no immediate word whether the pilot was flying solo or with passengers.

The plane's signal was lost over the Great Dismal Swamp.

"At this point there have been no reports of wreckage," said Corinne Geller, a State Police spokeswoman told The Virginian-Pilot.

State police, the Civil Air Patrol, park rangers and rescue personnel searched Friday on the ground and by boat through a densely forested area in the northern part of the swamp. Canine teams also were brought in.

An aerial search was grounded by weather conditions.

"We just hope we get a break from Mother Nature," Virginia State Police Capt. Robert Chappell said.

Crews focused their search on a 1-mile radius from the point officials lost contact with the plane, Chappell said.

Missing plane search

State police are asking anyone who might have seen a small plane in the area of Great Dismal Swamp to call 1-800-582-8350.

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