Santa Barbara ATR-42-300 Crashes Indian Face
13,000 feet above sea level on the sheer cliff called “Indian Face” by the locals, buffeted by freezing winds, crews rappelled from helicopters to search the wreckage in a dramatic rescue and reconnaissance attempt. No survivors were found.
The flame-charred tail of the twin-engine plane rested on the mountainside amid fuselage and assorted wreckage.
The Merida airport six miles away is hemmed in among mountains in a region notoriously difficult to navigate. Terrain forced searchers to camp a mile away and hike in. Pilotsâ€“including the one lost in this flightâ€“receive specialized training to fly through the area.