Recovery of Alaska plane wreckage on hold due to bad weather

  • This Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021, photo provided by Lee LaFollette shows a de Havilland Beaver aircraft departing the Port of Ketchikan, Alaska. Foggy, reduced-visibility conditions have delayed efforts to recover the wreckage of a sightseeing plane that crashed in southeast Alaska, killing six people. Clint Johnson, chief of the National Transportation Safety Board's Alaska region, says the agency had hoped to recover the wreckage Sunday. But he says those efforts were called off due to poor conditions. He says the crew planned to try again on Monday, Aug. 9, 2021. (Lee LaFollette via AP)

    This Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021, photo provided by Lee LaFollette shows a de Havilland Beaver aircraft departing the Port of Ketchikan, Alaska. Foggy, reduced-visibility conditions have delayed efforts to recover the wreckage of a sightseeing plane that crashed in southeast Alaska, killing six people. Clint Johnson, chief of the National Transportation Safety Board's Alaska region, says the agency had hoped to recover the wreckage Sunday. But he says those efforts were called off due to poor conditions. He says the crew planned to try again on Monday, Aug. 9, 2021. (Lee LaFollette via AP) Associated Press

  • This Aug. 5, 2021, photo provided by Lee LaFollette shows a de Havilland Beaver aircraft departing the Port of Ketchikan, Alaska. Foggy, reduced-visibility conditions have delayed efforts to recover the wreckage of a sightseeing plane that crashed in southeast Alaska, killing six people. Clint Johnson, chief of the National Transportation Safety Board's Alaska region, says the agency had hoped to recover the wreckage Sunday. But he says those efforts were called off due to poor conditions. He says the crew planned to try again on Monday, Aug. 9, 2021. (Lee LaFollette via AP)

    This Aug. 5, 2021, photo provided by Lee LaFollette shows a de Havilland Beaver aircraft departing the Port of Ketchikan, Alaska. Foggy, reduced-visibility conditions have delayed efforts to recover the wreckage of a sightseeing plane that crashed in southeast Alaska, killing six people. Clint Johnson, chief of the National Transportation Safety Board's Alaska region, says the agency had hoped to recover the wreckage Sunday. But he says those efforts were called off due to poor conditions. He says the crew planned to try again on Monday, Aug. 9, 2021. (Lee LaFollette via AP) Associated Press

  • Ketchikan Volunteer Rescue Squad personnel land and disembark from a Hughes 369D helicopter on Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021, at Temsco Helicopters Inc in Ketchikan, Alaska. The KVRS, U.S. Coast Guard, Alaska State Troopers and U.S. Forest Service responded to a radio beacon alert from a downed Southeast Aviation de Havilland Beaver float plane that was carrying five passengers from the Holland America Line cruise ship Nieuw Amsterdam, according to Coast Guard, Holland America and KVRS information. The sightseeing plane crashed Thursday in southeast Alaska, killing all six people on board, the U.S. Coast Guard said.  (Dustin Safranek/Ketchikan Daily News via AP)

    Ketchikan Volunteer Rescue Squad personnel land and disembark from a Hughes 369D helicopter on Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021, at Temsco Helicopters Inc in Ketchikan, Alaska. The KVRS, U.S. Coast Guard, Alaska State Troopers and U.S. Forest Service responded to a radio beacon alert from a downed Southeast Aviation de Havilland Beaver float plane that was carrying five passengers from the Holland America Line cruise ship Nieuw Amsterdam, according to Coast Guard, Holland America and KVRS information. The sightseeing plane crashed Thursday in southeast Alaska, killing all six people on board, the U.S. Coast Guard said. (Dustin Safranek/Ketchikan Daily News via AP) Associated Press

  • The Holland America Line cruise ship Nieuw Amsterdam is docked on Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021, at Berth 4 in Ketchikan, Alaska. Holland America confirmed Thursday that five passengers from the Nieuw Amsterdam were aboard a float plane that crashed Thursday morning during a tour of the Misty Fjords National Monument. There were no survivors, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. The de Havilland Beaver aircraft was owned by Southeast Aviation LLC. (Dustin Safranek/Ketchikan Daily News via AP)

    The Holland America Line cruise ship Nieuw Amsterdam is docked on Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021, at Berth 4 in Ketchikan, Alaska. Holland America confirmed Thursday that five passengers from the Nieuw Amsterdam were aboard a float plane that crashed Thursday morning during a tour of the Misty Fjords National Monument. There were no survivors, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. The de Havilland Beaver aircraft was owned by Southeast Aviation LLC. (Dustin Safranek/Ketchikan Daily News via AP) Associated Press

 
 
Updated 8/9/2021 6:21 PM

JUNEAU, Alaska -- Efforts to recover the wreckage of a sightseeing plane that crashed in southeast Alaska last week, killing six people, were stymied again Monday by poor weather conditions, a National Transportation Safety Board official said.

Clint Johnson, chief of the agency's Alaska region, said low clouds and fog continued to delay wreckage recovery efforts.

 

'They are ready to go as soon as they get a weather window,' he said of the team that will handle the work.

The wreckage is in a rugged, steep area that is heavily forested, at 1,800 feet (549 meters) to 2,000 feet (610 meters) 'up on the side of a mountain,' he said. The site is about 12 miles (19 miles) northeast of the city of Ketchikan, Johnson said.

Investigators were conducting interviews in the case, he said.

The flight was returning to Ketchikan on Thursday from a tour of Misty Fjords National Monument when it crashed, Johnson said.

The plane carried five passengers and the pilot. The Alaska State Troopers identified the pilot as Rolf Lanzendorfer, 64, of Cle Elum, Washington.

Troopers identified the passengers as Mark Henderson, 69, and Jacquelyn Komplin, 60, both of Napa, California; Andrea McArthur, 55, and Rachel McArthur, 20, both of Woodstock, Georgia; and Janet Kroll, 77, of Mount Prospect, Illinois.

The troopers reported Saturday that the bodies had been recovered.

Holland America Line confirmed the five passengers had been traveling on the company's ship Nieuw Amsterdam, which was nearing the end of seven-day Alaska cruise.

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Sightseeing excursions, such as those to Misty Fjords National Monument, are among the options for cruise passengers stopping in Ketchikan to explore the area while they are off the ship.

The cruise line said the excursion the passengers were on was not sold by Holland America Line.

The flight operator, Southeast Aviation, released a statement Thursday saying it was cooperating with the agencies involved.

'All of us share in the anguish of this tragic incident, and our prayers go out to all affected,' the statement said.

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