4 dead, 2 missing after floatplanes carrying cruise-goers collide in Alaska

4 dead, 2 missing after floatplanes carrying cruise-goers collide in Alaska

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Four people are dead and two people are unaccounted for after two floatplanes carrying passengers from a cruise excursion collided mid-air in Alaska, according to the United States Coast Guard.

The two planes carried 14 passengers from the Royal Princess who were on a seven-day roundtrip cruise out of Vancouver, according to a statement Monday from Princess Cruises. The planes collided mid-air about 1 p.m. about eight nautical miles from Ketchikan, Alaska, at the southeastern end of the state.  Rescue efforts continued for one Australian and one Canadian who were on the cruise.

 

“All of us at Princess Cruises are deeply saddened by this tragic news and we are extending our full support to the investigating authorities as well as the traveling companions of the guests involved,” Brian O’Connor, a spokesman for Princess Cruises said in a Tuesday statement.

An Otter floatplane with 11 people onboard was returning from a Misty Fjords tour while a second Beaver floatplane carrying five people was on an independent tour.

“We realize the extent of offense we have inflicted and understand that we must take responsibility for our action,” the editors of the magazine wrote. They also said the Lampoon “condemns any and all forms of anti-Semitism.” The U.S. Coast Guard said in a statement late Monday that four people have been confirmed dead, and two remain unaccounted for. The Coast Guard said that it, partner agencies and good Samaritans were continuing to look for those two people in the vicinity of George Inlet near Ketchikan.

 

The Coast Guard dispatched helicopters and boats for search-and-rescue operations. The U.S. Forest Service and Alaska State Troopers also responded to the scene.  Ten people involved in the crash were rescued by a passing ship, the Saint Innocent. Three of those rescued were in serious condition and one was critical, a local hospital told NBC News. The others were in fair condition.

 

Four of the patients, all of whom are in their 60s, were taken to Harborview Medical Center. One of the patients is in intensive care, the others in satisfactory condition, the hospital said.

Taquan Air, the company which operated the De Havilland Otter plane, said in a statement that it has suspended all flights.

 

“We realize the extent of offense we have inflicted and understand that we must take responsibility for our action,” the editors of the magazine wrote. They also said the Lampoon “condemns any and all forms of anti-Semitism.” The U.S. Coast Guard said in a statement late Monday that four people have been confirmed dead, and two remain unaccounted for. The Coast Guard said that it, partner agencies and good Samaritans were continuing to look for those two people in the vicinity of George Inlet near Ketchikan.

The Coast Guard dispatched helicopters and boats for search-and-rescue operations. The U.S. Forest Service and Alaska State Troopers also responded to the scene.

 

Ten people involved in the crash were rescued by a passing ship, the Saint Innocent. Three of those rescued were in serious condition and one was critical, a local hospital told NBC News. The others were in fair condition.

Four of the patients, all of whom are in their 60s, were taken to Harborview Medical Center. One of the patients is in intensive care, the others in satisfactory condition, the hospital said.

 

In 2015, a sightseeing plane operated by a company later purchased by Taquan crashed and killed eight cruise ship passengers.

The Associated Press reported in 2007 that the pilot of a Taquan Air floatplane and four sightseers were killed in a crash over the mountains of Misty Fiords near Ketchikan.

 

“In a remote area such as this, given our limited resources, we rely on our partner agencies and appreciate the support that good Samaritans have rendered to this point,” Capt. Stephen White, Coast Guard Sector Juneau commander, said in Monday night’s statement. “With the loss of life in this case, we know that the impact to Alaska is immense and our thoughts are with the community here.”

 

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