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KETCHIKAN (KDN) — A small aircraft carrying four people crashed on Prince of Wales Thursday, injuring all four occupants.
The de Havilland Beaver, operated by Promech Air, crashed into the trees near the south end of Lake Galea due to engine complications, Beth Ipsen of the Alaska State Troopers said. An emergency location beacon alerted the U.S. Coast Guard of the crash, and the Coast Guard informed the troopers at noon.
Responders, including Promech employees, troopers, the Coast Guard and Klawock Volunteer Search and Rescue arrived at the scene. A Coast Guard helicopter flew two of the four occupants to Ketchikan Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening injuries before returning to the crash site for the other two occupants, who also had minor injuries.
The helicopter had to make two trips because two people needed to be carried on a litter, said Nick Meyer, a Coast Guard civilian controller stationed at the Juneau Incident Command Center.
"The hardest part was figuring out how to squeeze them all in," Meyer said. The other two crash survivors had to be hoisted from the scene because of the rough terrain.
Ipsen said the National Transportation Safety Board has been notified of the crash. A spokeswoman for Promech Air declined to comment when called.