ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) — Update 11:32 AM, Dec 1 2019
The Security Aviation Flight that crashed West of Cooper Landing Friday night was chartered by Medevac Alaska, according to Security Aviation and Medevac Alaska Operations Manager Cory Hughes. Hughes confirmed the flight left Anchorage at roughly 6:30 p.m. for the Seward Airport, and was later reported overdue, and that the three people on board the plane were two Medevac Alaska crew members, an a Security Aviation pilot.
Alaska State Troopers said in a dispatch Saturday night that they don't expect any survivors. They also said Alaska Mountain Rescue Group was organizing a group to try and reach the crash site Sunday.
Update 10:00 PM, Nov 30 2019
The three passengers are now believed to be dead according to an Alaska State Troopers Dispatch. Ken Marsh with AST said they were not able to reach the crash site on foot or land there, but they were able to fly over in a helicopter with a National Transportation Safety Board Investigator.
Security Aviation has released an updated statement:
"We are devastated to learn the three people aboard our Piper Navajo are believed to have perished Friday near Cooper Landing at approximately 7:15 p.m.," they wrote. "Our hearts go out to their families, friends, and loved ones. We are working closely with the NTSB, the FAA, and other appropriate agencies as they conduct their investigation. At this time, our priority is assisting the affected families, and our staff. We have voluntarily implemented a safety stand down, suspending all operations until further notice. We are grateful for the first responders and volunteers assisting in the response, and will provide more information at the appropriate time."
The Alaska Mountain Rescue Group is organizing a ground response to the crash site on Sunday, Dec. 1.
A Security Aviation flight with three people on board is believed to have caught fire after crashing under unknown circumstances Friday evening about 15 miles west of Quartz Creek Airport.
According to preliminary information from Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson Ian Gregor, a twin-engine Piper PA-31 carrying three people was flying from Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport to Seward Airport Friday evening when the flight was reported overdue.
Gregor says Security Aviation was operating the flight, though it's not yet known if it was a chartered for-hire flight.
A statement provided to KTUU by a spokesperson for Security Aviation confirmed the flight was operated by the company.
"It is with heavy hearts that we confirm that on November 29, 2019 at approximately 7:15 p.m., a Security Aviation Piper Navajo with three people onboard was reported overdue and is presumed missing. A search and rescue effort is underway," the statement says. "Security Aviation is working closely with all appropriate agencies, and will issue a full statement when more information becomes available.”
The conditions of those on board is currently unknown.
Alaska State Troopers are coordinating with volunteer Search and Rescue groups to reach the location of an aircraft believed to have crashed outside of Cooper Landing.
According to Tim DeSpain with AST, dispatch began receiving reports of a crash Friday night shortly after 7 p.m.
An Alaska Rescue Coordination Center crew flew over the crash site Friday night, but weather conditions and terrain prevented rescuers from reaching the location on foot.
Troopers are currently working with volunteer Search and Rescue groups to reach the crash site with NTSB investigators.
NTSB officials are searching for witnesses who may have seen a fireball on a hillside near Jim's Landing from the Sterling Highway.
This is a developing story.
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