Search for missing plane and pilot concludes after discovery of aircraft wreckage near Humpback Mountain

OLYMPIA – The search for a missing pilot concluded Monday, May 20 after the discovery of aircraft wreckage near Humpback Mountain, just west of Snoqualmie Pass. Ground search crews discovered the crash site around 1:30 p.m. The plane’s 69-year-old pilot, Jerry Riedinger was found deceased inside the plane located in a heavily forested area of the mountain.

Riedinger left the Arlington Municipal Airport Sunday at 4:30 p.m. His wife reported him missing around 6 p.m., after he did not arrive at his destination in Ephrata.

Search crews, coordinated by Washington State Department of Transportation Air Search and Rescue, focused on the area near Humpback Mountain off Interstate 90 based on cell phone and flight data. Search and rescue groups combed the area extensively by air and on the ground. The Riedinger family has been notified of today’s findings.

On behalf of the search and rescue team, WSDOT offers our sincere condolences to the entire Riedinger family. WSDOT is thankful for those who provided their time or expertise during the search mission. Over 220 people assisted in the search efforts from Sunday and Monday, May 19-20. Agencies who assisted in the search include King County Search and Rescue, King County Sheriff’s Office, Kittitas County Sheriff's Office, Kittitas County Search and Rescue, Seattle Mountain Rescue, Washington Air Search and Rescue, Snoqualmie Pass Ski Patrol Rescue, King County Explorer Search and Rescue, Pierce County Explorer Search and Rescue and WSDOT personnel.

WSDOT, by statute (RCW 47.68.380), is charged with the coordination and management of aerial search and rescue within the state.

This concludes WSDOT’s involvement in the mission. Further information will be released by the King County Sheriff’s Office. The contact there is Sergeant Eric White at 206-263-2560. Media questions about any investigation of cause can be directed to the National Transportation Safety Board.

166,800 electric vehicle

registrations in Washington in 2023, up from 114,600 in 2022.

87 wetland compensation sites

actively monitored on 918 acres in 2023.

25,000 safe animal crossings

in the Snoqualmie Pass East Project area since 2014.