STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) _ A small plane with eight people on board crashed Thursday in a forest area of northern Sweden, officials said.

There was no immediate word on the fate of the people on board.

The Piper PA-31 aircraft departed at noon Thursday from Sundsvall, some 600 miles north of Stockholm, said Bert Ivansen, assistant manager at Midlanda airport in Sundsvall. ``About 10 minutes later, we lost radio contact with the plane,'' he said.

The plane was bound for Goteborg on Sweden's southwestern coast carrying a pilot and seven business travelers, Ivansen said. Their names were not released.

Swedish news agency TT reported that the weather in Sundsvall was bad when the crash occurred.

``The plane dived toward the ground at a sharp angle,'' Hans Lindner at the Central Air Traffic Control was quoted as telling TT. ``The helicopter (rescue) staff on site says it looks very bad.''