Two planes carrying five people collide mid-air in Alaska

A spokesman for the National Transportation Safety Board, Clint Johnson, said two Anchorage-based investigators were headed to the scene, but said authorities were "still very much treating this as an active rescue". "However, in this case we don't know what circumstances led up to this mid-air collision".

The collision involved a Hageland Aviation Cessna 208 Caravan carrying three people and a Renfro's Alaska Adventures Piper PA-18 Super Cub with two people inside, said Candis A. Olmstead, director of public affairs for the Alaska National Guard.

Alaska National Guard officials say the collision occurred just before 11 a.m. Wednesday. Crews in another airplane spotted wreckage on the ground.

Johnson had no word on survivors, and said the Board was waiting for updates from the Alaska State Troopers and the U.S. Air Force's rescue coordination center.

Alaska is a sparsely populated USA state more than twice the size of Texas, and residents in remote areas rely on small planes for travel, recreation and mail delivery.

Around noon, the National Guard dispatched a Black Hawk helicopter carrying two flight medics from Bethel to the crash site. A Renfro employee said the company was not immediately releasing information.

Behavioral Health Aides are standing by across the region at YKHC clinics to speak with family and loved ones about the crash.

Three people were aboard the Cessna 208 Caravan of Hageland Aviation, and two on the Piper PA-18 Super Cub.

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