SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Aircraft Accident
Thank you for a job well done!

By Jerry L. Kiffer


August 04, 2008

As most have heard we had an accident involving a Cessna 210 going into the water short of the airport here in Ketchikan last week. The rescue of the two persons on board was accomplished by swift reaction of local 135 pilots who were backed up by our rescue service and local civilians.

While this accident resulted in the loss of the aircraft, the pilot and his passenger escaped without injuries and in doing so demonstrated the effectiveness of the recently developed emergency services response plan.

There has been much press regarding the incident but little has been reported on the actions taken by the flight service station. I have been responding to local aircraft incidents and accidents for over 20 years and feel without the controller s actions we may have had a significantly different outcome. Ketchikan is a busy station landing both on the harbor from the east and west as well as on the runway, we do not have many incidents yet the controller on duty calmly communicated with the pilot, routed and diverted aircraft into the area where they could be of most use, continued to land aircraft on the harbor, coordinated emergency services, and even landed an Alaska Airlines Flight on the runway all in the 15 minutes it took for this incident to play out.

I feel a lot is owed to good weather, the fortunate ability to land fixed wing at the crash site, and the time of day, but without the outstanding job by a very good flight service controller the rescue of the people in that aircraft may not have gone as well. We are very lucky to have such a great flight service station crew who work hard every day to keep air travel safe in our community.

Jerry L. Kiffer
Ketchikan Volunteer
Rescue Squad
Ketchikan, AK

About: "I am an incident commander with the Ketchikan Volunteer Rescue Squad since 1980. "

Received August 04, 2008 - Published August 04, 2008



Viewpoints - Opinion Letters:

letter Webmail Your Opinion Letter to the Editor



Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


E-mail your letters & opinions to
Your full name, city and state are required for publication.

SitNews ©2008
Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska