Mon, Dec 21, 2009
Two Day Search Gave No Clues
On Saturday morning the Coast Guard
suspended its search for Dr. Mark Nichter, 50, who reportedly lost
communications after departing St. Petersburg, FL, Tuesday, in a
single engine plane. Nichter worked in the pediatric
intensive care unit at All Children's Hospital in St.
The Air Force Rescue Coordination Center called the Coast Guard
on Thursday to report a loss of radio communications with Nichter
on Tuesday. The aircraft was last reported at approximately
9,900 ft, 140 miles southwest of St. Petersburg, FL.
Coast Guard Aviation Training Center Mobile, AL, launched an
HC-144 Ocean Sentry airplane and crew that conducted three search
patterns, totaling 1,890 square miles, an area larger than Rhode
Island. An Urgent Marine Information Broadcast (UMIB) was also
issued to mariners as a caution in the area.
The Coast Guard report did not give a reason they were not
contacted until Thursday to start a rescue search mission for
Nichter. There has been no indication of passengers and no
reports as to Nichter's intended destination. He had his
private and instrument ratings.
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