Nine killed in Alaska cruise sightseeing plane crash

Excursion plane carrying eight passengers from cruise ship crashes in southeast Alaska

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

A sightseeing plane carrying a pilot and eight cruise ship passengers has crashed in south-east Alaska, killing everyone on board.  

“There are no survivors,” said Promech Air, the plane’s operator.

The crash occurred near Ella Lake, about 20 miles (30 km) north-east of Ketchikan, the Seattle-based cruise company said in a statement.

None of the names of those aboard the crashed single-engine aircraft have been released, pending the notification of their families, Promech added.

Clint Johnson, head of the Alaska office of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), said weather was preventing the recovery of bodies until Friday.

Recovery efforts were halted due to rain and wind on Thursday night in the rugged terrain about 20 miles northeast of Ketchikan, south-east Alaska.

Officials will mount a recovery attempt again on Friday, he said.

The plane was on a shore excursion, sold through Holland America Line, a unit of Carnival Corp.

"We are incredibly distressed by this situation, and our thoughts and prayers are with those on board the plane and their families," Holland America said.

The cause of the crash is not yet known. The National Transportation Safety Board said it was sending a team to investigate.

TRTWorld and agencies