2 Floatplanes Crash Off Alaska, 5 Dead, 1 missing, 10 in Hospital: Reports

By Mimi Nguyen Ly

Two floatplanes crashed mid-air in southeast Alaska on Monday afternoon, resulting in at least five people dead, one person missing, and 10 admitted to hospital, according to reports. There were 16 people altogether on the two planes.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) confirmed that two planes collided under unknown circumstances, according to the Anchorage Daily News.

Princess Cruises said in a statement sighted by Fox News that the larger plane—a de Havilland Otter—was carrying 10 cruise guests and a pilot, on an excursion sold through the cruise line.

The second, smaller plane—a de Havilland Beaver—was carrying four cruise guests and a pilot, on an independent tour.

KTUU reported that Princess Cruises confirmed in a statement that all five confirmed deaths were on the smaller plane.

Rescue crews from the Coast Guard and partner agencies were searching for survivors. Initial reports to the Coast Guard said that the two planes went down in the area of George Inlet, near Ketchikan, around 1 p.m. local time.

Ten people have been admitted to PeaceHealth Ketchikan Medical Center, a spokeswoman with the hospital, Mischa Chernick, told the Anchorage Daily News.

“We have one in critical condition, three in serious condition, and six in fair condition,” Chernick said.

U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Jon-Paul Rios said that one passenger from the larger plane was still missing, according to the Associated Press (AP).

AP reported that weather conditions in the area of the crash comprised high overcast skies with 9 miles per hour southeast winds.

Rios told KTUU that rescue crews were working as quickly as possible to search for those missing.

“A case like this, we will search as long as we can,” he said.

The two planes are regularly used as floatplanes that taxi in the area, according to the Anchorage Daily News.

This is a developing story.