6 killed in sightseeing plane crash in southeast Alaska

Midair Collision
Posted at 8:53 AM, Aug 06, 2021

Six people were killed when a sightseeing floatplane crashed in southeast Alaska on Thursday.

The U.S. Coast Guard said in a statement that an emergency alert beacon registered to a da Havilland Beaver aircraft was activated near the Misty Fjords area at 11:20 a.m. and a helicopter reported sighting wreckage on a ridgeline.

Officials say a Coast Guard helicopter crew located the wreckage about eight miles northeast of Ketchikan at about 2:37 p.m.

The crew lowered two rescue swimmers down to the wreckage, but they reported that there were no survivors.

Officials say weather conditions at the scene were 8 mph winds, visibility of two miles, ceilings of 900 feet with a mist, and light rain.

One pilot and five passengers were reportedly aboard the aircraft owned by Southeast Aviation LLC, the Coast Guard says.

Holland America Line confirmed on Twitter that the five passengers on the floatplane were guests on one of their cruise ships, the Nieuw Amsterdam.

“It was an independent tour not sold by Holland America Line. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the victims,” wrote the cruise company.

The occupants killed in the plane crash were not immediately identified.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said it was sending a team to investigate the crash and expected a team to arrive in Alaska by Friday afternoon.