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Thread: Search and Rescue efforts underway after reports of plane crash near Cooper Landing

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    Default Search and Rescue efforts underway after reports of plane crash near Cooper Landing

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) — Alaska State Troopers are coordinating with volunteer Search and Rescue groups to reach the location of an aircraft believed to have crashed outside of Cooper Landing.
    According to Tim DeSpain with AST, dispatch began receiving reports of a crash Friday night shortly after 7 p.m.
    An Alaska Rescue Coordination Center crew flew over the crash site Friday night, but weather conditions and terrain prevented rescuers from reaching the location on foot.
    Troopers are currently working with volunteer Search and Rescue groups to reach the crash site with NTSB investigators.
    NTSB officials are searching for witnesses who may have seen a fireball on a hillside near Jim's Landing from the Sterling Highway.
    The number of people on board or their condition is currently unknown.
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    Sad news. Probably was ideal conditions for icing.
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    I talked to a Ravn pilot who said there was icing in that area. .
    I saw the radar track. it looks like they started at 2700 feet and tried to turn into the pass too early (to the north)
    The they circled around out west and then headed back into the pass after dropping to 2000 feet.
    The track shows them on the north side of the hwy against the mountains when it stopped.
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    Jeeze why scud run to Seward? Who is medevac Alaska?

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    Big winds or too much ice to get on top. Staying low this time of year may be the right answer. We should know more in a year that is just how it works.
    DENNY

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    I wonder if the DOT no night road clearing was a factor in the Medevac decision.

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    I lived and worked in Seward for 6 years. Due to the way the local hospital was run, my co-workers and I used to promise each other that if one of us were shot or badly hurt in the line of duty, that one or two others would throw the injured party into a patrol car and drive like hell to Anchorage or Soldotna.
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    Two air ambulance services declined a patient transport request from Seward on Friday evening before a third company took the flight, leading to a fatal crash that killed three people.





    Jim Gregory, a spokesperson for Guardian Flight, confirmed over the weekend that the company received a patient transport flight request from Seward but put the flight on hold. He says the flight was completed on Saturday by Guardian.




    Gregory would not confirm whether it was poor weather that prompted the flight to be turned down earlier.




    LifeMed Alaska also received a request for the same medical flight from Seward on Friday evening, but the flight was declined due to poor weather conditions.




    Steve Heyano, the Chief Operating Officer of LifeMed Alaska, said the company would usually use a helicopter based out of Soldotna to complete a medical flight from Seward. The pilot in Soldotna said the conditions did not meet minimum requirements to fly.




    A LifeMed fixed-wing plane in Anchorage, which has lower weather condition requirements to fly, was also requested Friday. The weather conditions were also deemed too poor to fly, Heyano said.




    The company has a policy of “all to go, one to say no,” where any member of a crew can decline a flight if the conditions are felt to be too dangerous. Heyano said it is commonplace in the industry that the pilot is not told the medical condition of the patient in order to not impact their decision on whether or not to fly.




    Medevac Alaska, a third air ambulance company based out of Anchorage, took the flight shortly after 6:30 p.m. on Friday down to Seward in a plane operated by Security Aviation. Sarah Erkmann Ward, a spokesperson for Security Aviation, said the companies regularly work together and that it is routine for Medevac Alaska to charter a Security Aviation plane for a flight.




    She could not confirm whether Security Aviation accepted the flight after LifeMed and Guardian declined the flight. She could also not confirm if Security Aviation was aware that the flight had been declined by two other companies.




    According to Alaska State Troopers, the plane crashed around 11 miles from Quartz Creek near Cooper Landing. All three people on board the flight died.
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    Quote Originally Posted by boneguy View Post
    Big winds or too much ice to get on top. Staying low this time of year may be the right answer. We should know more in a year that is just how it works.
    DENNY
    Staying low because of big winds or icing might work in the daylight. This flight took place in the dark! I wonder who had operational control at Security?

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    See if this works,, it is the radar track. https://www.facebook.com/gpnew/video...7943866339656/
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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    I wonder if the DOT no night road clearing was a factor in the Medevac decision.
    That is highly likely the case.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    See if this works,, it is the radar track. https://www.facebook.com/gpnew/video...7943866339656/
    Not working for me, but I am not real savvy at FB

    Not having flown into Seward: is the gps coverage and terrain display good in this area or are there some holes in it like I have experienced in other areas of the state?
    This is the second Medevac flight to end in tragedy this year.
    My heart goes out to all the families and friends.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    I wonder if the DOT no night road clearing was a factor in the Medevac decision.
    The flight was at 630 pm, roads are plowed at that time. There is no chance that DOT not clearing the roads at night could be used as a valid excuse.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patsfan54 View Post
    The flight was at 630 pm, roads are plowed at that time. There is no chance that DOT not clearing the roads at night could be used as a valid excuse.
    Dark here at 3:40 PM They stop plowing and sanding before dark. Near three hour drive Seward to Anchorage "Each Way". Allow some delivery time at hospital. So figure 6:30 to 2:00 AM total turn around back to Seward. Over unknown dark road conditions over two mountain passes. Now remember they are publicly on notice that all emergency support service including Alaska State Troopers, Fire companies, EMT vehicles will not roll till about 11:00 next day. And you think they want to "Cowboy Up" and "Damm the torpedoes" full speed ahead, load the ambulance we are going for it. This is exactly the whole reason for the Silvertip DOT Station, was to keep those two passes open for Emergency Vehicles 24/7/365.

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    Looks like impact was at 0413 hrs ZULU. So is that 1913 hrs local, with the daylight savings BS added in...?
    Of course the first calls had to go out a good while before this, since two companies turned down the flight, then these guys had to gear up and go.
    So I would bet the call went out around 4pm to 5 pm at the latest.
    They could have driven to the central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna in 2 hours. And it is a good hospital. Or have gone to the Kenai airport for an IFR flight. No mountain pass driving needed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    Dark here at 3:40 PM They stop plowing and sanding before dark. Near three hour drive Seward to Anchorage "Each Way". Allow some delivery time at hospital. So figure 6:30 to 2:00 AM total turn around back to Seward. Over unknown dark road conditions over two mountain passes. Now remember they are publicly on notice that all emergency support service including Alaska State Troopers, Fire companies, EMT vehicles will not roll till about 11:00 next day. And you think they want to "Cowboy Up" and "Damm the torpedoes" full speed ahead, load the ambulance we are going for it. This is exactly the whole reason for the Silvertip DOT Station, was to keep those two passes open for Emergency Vehicles 24/7/365.
    That dog won't hunt, as much as you want it to.

    It wasn't dark at 340 pm last Friday, might not have been light but it wasn't dark. Not accounting for when the first two calls were placed and denied or how much time passed before wheels up. Let's just say 630 pm (even though it would have been well before that) an ambulance leaves from Seward enroute to Anchorage and it takes 3 hours so it's 930 pm at drop off, patient made it, end of story. Oh right the ambulance has to get back to Seward they could assess the road conditions at that time, end of story.

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    I could be wrong but I don't think the Seward ambulance does transfers to the big city, pretty sure an ambulance would have to be dispatched to Seward to pick up a patient.

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    My crude take on the flight path from the radar track. Now my computer is acting up. Here in Homer, it was pitch dark and raining at 1830 and 1900 hours local time. I was outside with my grandson, using flashlights to find some cord wood from my pile. I am not sure what Kenai and Soldotna were doing at that time. Seward was overcast with light winds at 1800 hours that night.
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    The preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board is interesting.

    https://www.ktuu.com/content/news/NT...566092361.html

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