Five of nine people aboard a GCI plane that crashed near Dillingham are reported dead, according to the National Transporation Safety Board. Friends of former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens say he was aboard the plane, but there has been no official confirmation.
Also aboard the plane was former NASA administrator Sean O’Keefe, according to media reports.
Another plane spotted the wreckage 17 miles north of Dillingham at around 7 p.m., according to the Alaska Air National Guard. Rescuers were expected to reach the wreckage at midnight, but a handful of good Samaritans were on the scene earlier in the evening, Guard spokesman Maj. Guy Hayes said Monday night.
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The Alaska National Guard released this statement last night:
CAMP DENALI, Alaska — The Alaska Air National Guard is responding to a plane crash 17-miles north of Dillingham that occurred Monday night.
The Air Force 11th Rescue Coordination Center, manned by Alaska National Guardsmen, was contacted by Dillingham Flight Service after a Good Samaritan spotted a downed aircraft around 7 p.m.
The Alaska Air National Guard’s 210th, 211th and 212th Rescue Squadrons were alerted and are currently battling inclement weather en-route to the scene. They are expected to arrive at the plane crash site sometime after midnight.
The plane was reportedly carrying eight passengers and there are potential fatalities.
According to the RCC, there are five Good Samaritan medical personnel on scene assisting the plane crash victims.