Valley County In-Flight Plane Crash Kills Toddler, Seriously Injures Father


The National Transportation Safety Board will be the lead agency to investigate a mid-air collision of two planes over Valley County Friday, resulting in the death of a toddler and leaving the child's father in serious condition.

The accident occurred just before 10 a.m. June 28 near Yellow Pine, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. Witnesses said the two aircraft were attempting to land on a backcountry air strip at Johnson Creek Airport at the same time.

Occupants of one of the planes were a Utah family, including a 2-year-old boy and his father. The boy was fatally injured and the father was rushed, via air ambulance, to a Boise hospital. The identities have not been released. Two occupants of the other plane, two men from Oregon, suffered non-life threatening injuries, according to the Valley County Sheriff's
Department. The two men were taken to a McCall hospital.

According to the Associated Press, Johnson Creek Airport has a 3,400-foot runway and is located at 4,933 feet above sea level, surrounded by densely forested mountains. The AP's John Miller reports that the airport has been the site of numerous crashes, including accidents in 1996, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2010.

The airport remains open, but there could be some restrictions, according to the Idaho Transportation Department.