Advertisement

Remains of final two missing in Alaskan floatplane collision found; 6 dead

By
Nicholas Sakelaris and Allen Cone
Two floatplanes collided near Ketchikan, Alaska Monday, killing six people and injuring six others. vFile Photo by Robert Frola/Flickr/Wikimedia Commons
Two floatplanes collided near Ketchikan, Alaska Monday, killing six people and injuring six others. vFile Photo by Robert Frola/Flickr/Wikimedia Commons

May 14 (UPI) -- The remains of the final two missing people in a dual floatplane collision in Alaska were found Tuesday, raising the death toll to six.

The Ketchikan Gateway Borough announced all 16 people on the two planes, including the two pilots, have been accounted for. Six people were injured in the crash landings near Ketchikan while conducting sightseeing tours in George Inlet.

Advertisement

"Our community is heartbroken over this tragedy and its devastating impact on so many families," Ketchikan Gateway Borough Mayor David Landis said in the news release. "There has been a tremendous outpouring of compassion and support from everywhere in the community, and we offer sincere gratitude to all those who are responding to the crashes."

The 10 passengers were travelers aboard the Royal Princess cruise ship in the Alaskan fjord.

RELATED At least three dead, three missing in floatplanes collision, crash in Alaska

The two floatplanes collided at approximately 3,300 feet at 12:21 p.m. Monday, according to National Transportation Safety Board member Jennifer Homendy.

The Coast Guard said one was a Beaver floatplane and the other an Otter.

"With the loss of life in this case, we know that the impact to Alaska is immense," said Capt. Stephen White, the USCG Sector Juneau commander.

Advertisement
RELATED Alaska woman wins $300K guessing when ice breaks

The 10 injured initially were taken to Peace Health's Ketchikan Medical Center. Four were flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with one person remaining in serious condition and three in satisfactory condition. In Ketchikan Medical Center, three are in good condition and three have been discharged.

The cause of the crash was unknown, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said. Taquan Air, a regional airline flying one of the planes, canceled all flights while the crash is being investigated. The other one was by an independent carrier.

"At this time, we are in the midst of an active crisis response, and our focus is on assisting these passengers, the pilot, our staff, their families and loved ones and first responders," Taquan said in a statement.

RELATED U.S. airlines improve customer scores over past year -- slightly

The ship was on a seven-day cruise that ends in Anchorage, Alaska, on Saturday.

Advertisement

Latest Headlines