SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Search Suspended for Woman Missing in Lynn Canal


September 12, 2016
Monday PM

(SitNews) Ketchikan, Alaska - The U.S. Coast Guard and the Alaska State Troopers suspended the search for a missing 25-year-old woman who went into the water while aboard the cruise ship Norwegian Pearl at 4:28 p.m. Friday.

The crew of the Norwegian Pearl reported the woman, a crewmember aboard the vessel, had gone overboard Thursday morning while the Norwegian Pearl was transiting Lynn Canal.

Lynn Canal, Haines area of Southeast Alaska
Photo by Commander John Bortniak, NOAA Corps
Wikipedia Commons

The search was initiated Thursday morning, at approximately 7:00 AM, by the United States Coast Guard after learning Natalia Molina, age 25, of Colombia fell overboard from the cruise ship Norwegian Pearl near Funter Bay.

"We searched extensively with the Alaska State Troopers with multiple aircraft and surface resources for more than 42 hours," said Petty Officer 1st Class Blake Fleming, command duty officer, Coast Guard Sector Juneau. "After saturating a search area of 340 square-miles in Lynn Canal with 13 different search patterns, we made the difficult decision to suspend the search after our combined efforts were not able to locate her."

The 17th Coast Guard District command center coordinated the search which included Coast Guard Air Station Sitka helicopter crews, Coast Guard Station Ketchikan response boat crews, the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Liberty and Alaska State Trooper fixed-wing aircraft and response boat crews.

The search was suspended Friday pending any further developments.

Lynn Canal runs about 90 miles from the inlets of the Chilkat River south to Chatham Strait and Stephens Passage. At over 2,000 feet in depth, Lynn Canal is the deepest fjord in North America (outside Greenland) and one of the deepest and longest in the world as well.



Reporting & Editing by Mary Kauffman, SitNews


Source of News:

U.S. Coast Guard

Alaska Department of Public Safety



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