11 rescued after plane crashes on Alaska island

Plane crashes near Ketchikan with 11 aboard

Plane crashes near Ketchikan with 11 aboard

The Coast Guard says all 11 people on board the plane that crashed in Southeast Alaska today suffered only minor injuries, and are "otherwise in good condition". The island is part of the Tongass National Forest.

The crash occurred Tuesday on the island of Prince of Wales, reports mir24.tv.

All 11 people aboard a plane that crashed Tuesday have been rescued in mountainous terrain on Prince of Wales Island in Alaska, officials said.

Petty Officer 1st Class Jon-Paul Rios said word of the crash about 34 nautical miles southwest of Ketchikan, involving a plane carrying a pilot and 10 passengers, first reached the Coast Guard at about 9:20 a.m. "This one had a good outcome so far", he said. The pilot said all members of the flight have been accounted for though there are several injuries.

Coast Guard commander and Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator Mike Kahle praised the pilot, 72-year-old Mike Hodgins, who had kept his 10 passengers safe while landing the aircraft in the uneven terrain.

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Tim DeSpain, a spokesman for the Alaska State Troopers, says the pilot reported there were injuries but no deaths when the plane went down Tuesday.

A Coast Guard rescue helicopter battled deteriorating weather and very limited visibility. The company says it's important to understand what happened to avoid similar incidents.

Clint Johnson of the National Transportation Safety Board in Alaska said preliminary information suggests that the float-equipped de Havilland Otter aircraft was in rocky, tree-covered terrain.

The Coast Guard said two helicopter crews plucked them from the side of a mountain on Prince of Wales Island.

Taquan Air, which conducts scheduled flights and sightseeing services, said it was one of their flights.

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