Anchorage (Alaska): Two single-engine planes collided in the air near a remote western Alaska village, sending one aircraft crashing nose first and leaving its pilot presumed dead, authorities said.

Just the two pilots were aboard the planes when they collided on Friday near the village of Nightmute, about 645 kilometres west of Anchorage, State Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters said.

One plane landed, but the other crashed and burnt on impact, she said.

The pilot of a Ryan Air Cessna 207 that put down safely was identified as Kirsten Sprague, 26, of Idaho. Sprague walked away from the landing but was flown to Bethel, about 160 kilometres away, for a medical evaluation, Peters said.

The pilot of the Cessna 208 Caravan that crashed was identified as Scott Veal, 24, of Kenai, Alaska. That plane was destroyed and Veal "is presumed deceased" although nobody has yet been recovered, the spokeswoman said.

A news report said that the Caravan was operated as an air taxi and cargo carrier. Ryan Air is a rural freight carrier.

Both planes were flying toward Bethel, National Transportation Safety Board investigator Clint Johnson said.    

There was no immediate word on what caused the crash, which was the US state's third midair crash since July.

Forecasters said the weather at the time was overcast with cloud ceilings of about 300 metres but there was no fog or rain.

(Agencies)