Eleven people rescued from plane crash in Alaska | News | DW | 11.07.2018
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Eleven people rescued from plane crash in Alaska

All of the people on board a plane that crashed on Prince of Wales Island in Alaska were found alive by the US Coast Guard. Rescuers used helicopters to lift the people off the mountainous crash site.

Eleven people who were on board a plane that crashed Prince of Wales Island in the US state of Alaska sustained minor injuries but walked away with their lives, the US Coast Guard said on Tuesday.

Aided by the crashed aircraft's emergency locator, two Coast Guard helicopters managed to find the downed plane despite poor weather and visibility.

The crews on the helicopters then safely hoisted the passengers and pilot up from the crash site, which was up some 2,000 feet (610 meters) on a mountainous area on Prince of Wales Island, the Coast Guard said in a statement.

"I am proud of everyone involved in this rescue and that we were able to get all 11 people to safety in a timely manner," said Michael Kahle, the search and rescue coordinator for the Coast Guard in Juneau.

Emergency responders assist a passenger injured in a crash of a Taquan Air plane in mountainous terrain on Prince of Wales Island (picture-alliance/AP Photo/D. Safranek)

The passengers and pilot of the plane were first treated in a staging area before being taken to a hospital in Ketchikan

Authorities said the 11 individuals sustained "some injuries" and that they were taken to a staging area with emergency personnel. They were later transferred to a hospital in the town of Ketchikan to be further assessed.

"We had, I don't know how many, but I think probably every ambulance in town" responded, said Chris John, an incident commander with the Ketchikan Volunteer Rescue Squad.

The plane was operated by Taquan Air, which carries out sightseeing services and scheduled flights. The company said the crashed plane was a chartered flight.

Taquan Air has said it suspended all its scheduled flights and was working to figure out the cause of the crash.

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