Two hurt when Iditarod plane goes down outside checkpoint

Posted: Wednesday, March 12, 2008

NOME - Two members of a media production crew working with organizers of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race were injured Tuesday when their small plane crashed en route to a race checkpoint.

Tony Verano and Matt Peterson sustained non-life-threatening injuries when the Cessna 180 went down about 13 miles east of White Mountain, 77 miles from the Nome finish line, Alaska State Troopers said. The pilot, Kenneth Moon, was not hurt. No other people were on board.

The accident occurred at about 10 a.m., Iditarod officials said.

Verano and Peterson work for Versus, formerly known as the Outdoor Life Network, according to Stan Hooley, executive director of the Iditarod Trail Committee. Stamford, Conn.-based Versus is a national media partner with the Iditarod.

Moon was flying from the checkpoint at Koyuk to White Mountain when the plane crashed, according to trooper Sgt. Andrew Merrill. Moon is part of the Iditarod air force, a collection of pilots who volunteer their time and planes for the 1,100-mile race.

Troopers were investigating the cause of crash along with the Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board, Merrill said.

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