Authorities searching for missing family after plane vanishes in Pacific Northwest

Authorities Searching for Missing Plane in Washington

A search will resume Monday for the family and small plane that went missing Saturday afternoon after what was supposed to be a short flight from western Montana to Lynden, Washington.

The Washington State Department of Transportation reports the plane was carrying three occupants: Leland and Sharon Bowman and their 16-year-old step-granddaughter, Autumn Veatch.

The WSDOT's Aviation Emergency Services division spent all day Sunday searching for the missing plane, but found nothing.

"It can be very much like a needle in a haystack," the Civil Air Patrol's Lowell Silver told KING.

"From 1,000 feet in the air, even the smallest clue can help in the search," a KING reporter said.

"A flash of light, a speck of white or a color that's not supposed to be there," Silver said.

Jessica Jerwin, of the Civil Air Patrol, told KGMI that the flight was filed under visual flight rules, meaning the pilto would be navigating primarily by sight rather than using flight instruments.

But she also told the station weather in the area was poor when the last cell phone signal was sent from anyone on the plane.

Monday, search crews will begin following the intended flight plan for the missing plane. The last cell phone signal the WSDOT detected from one of the plane's occupants was near Omak, Washington, more than 200 miles away from Lynden.

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