Four people have been killed, and two people are still missing after two seaplanes, transporting guests from Vancouver to Anchorage, Alaska, collided mid-air.
Yesterday (May 13) at 1:08 p.m. local time, a small float plane operated by Taquan Air that was flying a shore excursion sold by Princess Cruises was involved in an accident at approximately eight (8) nautical miles from Ketchikan, AK. The flight was returning from a Misty Fjords tour and carried ten guests from Royal Princess, as well as a pilot.
A second float plane carrying four guests from an independent Royal Princess tour then collided with the first plane.
Global Affairs Canada has confirmed one Canadian is among the four dead in a midair crash involving sightseeing planes in Alaska.
One Canadian still missing
In a statement, to PAX, Princess Cruises said that the U.S. Coast Guard and local search and rescue teams have confirmed that nine of ten American guests and and the pilot of the Taquan Air plane were rescued and are receiving medical attention. Overnight, the Coast Guard reported that they had recovered the last guest on the Taquan aircraft and were taking action to notify the family.
Authorities have confirmed there were three fatalities from the independent air tour recovered overnight, two guests and the pilot who were Americans. Rescue efforts continue for the other two guests, one Australian and one Canadian.
“All of us at Princess Cruises are deeply saddened by this tragic news and we are extending our full support to the investigating authorities as well as the traveling companions of the guests involved. We immediately activated our Princess Care Team employees in the region and sent additional team members to Ketchikan overnight to assist the families impacted,” said Brian O’Connor, a spokesman for Princess Cruises.
Royal Princess is sailing a seven-day Voyage of the Glaciers cruise that departed Vancouver on May 11 and is scheduled to arrive in Anchorage on Saturday, May 18. Royal Princess departed Ketchikan approximately 3.5 hours late and will arrive in Juneau at approximately 11:30 local time.
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