Troopers helicopter crashes in Alaska after pickup on snowmobiler; 3 dead

An Alaska State Trooper helicopter carrying two troopers and a rescued snowmobiler crashed in the south-central part of the state, and no survivors have been found.

The trooper helicopter was on a mission to pick up a snowmobiler stranded near Larson Lake 7 miles east of Talkeetna in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough.

According to Trooper spokeswoman Megan Peters, the helicopter located the stranded snowmobiler around 10 p.m. on Saturday, landed, and then took off.  It never arrived at a rendezvous point where medical personnel were waiting for the snowmobiler.

The crash site was spotted Sunday.

"We have not found any survivors," said Peters, who called the crash a "tremendous loss" for the Alaska State Troopers. 

Wreckage of the helicopter burned, but Peters said it's not known how the fire started or how long it lasted.

Peters says it's also not known if weather was a factor in the crash.

The National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.

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