Montana and Idaho authorities responded this afternoon to an incident in which an airplane apparently crash-landed in the Clark Fork River just east of the Cabinet Gorge Dam. The pilot survived the crash and has been transported to Bonner General Hospital in Sandpoint for treatment of hypothermia, a dispatcher said.
The Sanders County, Mont., Sheriff’s Office received a call at about 2:20 p.m. that a small airplane was floating upside down and moving toward the dam. Emergency crews from Bonner County also responded from Sandpoint, and the pilot was located and transported to the hospital to be treated for hypothermia, Sanders County dispatcher Bill Brown said.
Brown said it was too early to determine what caused the crash or how the pilot made it out before the airplane floated into the dam, which is used for electricity generation. Brown did not have the identity of the pilot or the model of the airplane.
The plane “is now near the dam on the Idaho side of the border,” Brown said. “The individual flying the plane did get out and was transported to Bonner General. I think all he had were hypothermia-type issues.”