Life-threatening injuries for one survivor after Juneau plane crash

  • By CHARLES L. WESTMORELAND and PAULA ANN SOLIS
  • Sunday, November 8, 2015 9:12pm
  • News

Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center staff identified Martha Mackowiak, 51, as the passenger medevaced last night from Juneau to Seattle after surviving a plane crash.

Although stabilized last night for transportation, her condition remains critical as she faces life-threatening injuries.

Mackowiak was aboard a Cessna 180 heading from Juneau to Haines with three others when the small plane crashed in Lynn Canal north of Berners Bay on Wednesday afternoon.

The pilot of the plane issued a mayday call and reported the plane’s engine had died, according to Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Meredith Manning. The pilot said they were going to attempt to land on the east side of Lynn Canal in the vicinity of the Eldred Rock Lighthouse.

“They were trying to land on the beach and crashed in the water,” Manning said.

All four people on board the private plane made it safely to the beach. A Coast Guard helicopter deployed from Air Station Sitka as well as a Temsco helicopter to aid in the recovery effort.

The Coast Guard’s MH-60 Jayhawk took three of the passengers to Juneau International Airport, where they were met by an EMS crew and then transported to Bartlett Regional Hospital, and the Temsco helicopter took Mackowiak directly to Bartlett, arriving around 4 p.m., said hospital spokesman Jim Strader.

The other three passengers were treated for minor injuries at Bartlett before being released. Their names and who owns the private aircraft is unknown.

Manning said the aircraft “was not visible” when rescuers arrived on scene, adding that the area was experiencing 5-foot seas.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said both the FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the crash.

More in News

The Seward welcome sign is photographed in July 2021. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Seward vice mayor and council member resigns

The council accept the resignation of Tony Baclaan during its Monday night meeting.

Ben Mohr watches Kenai River Junior Classic participants head out to fish on the Kenai River in Soldotna, Alaska, on Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2021. (Camille Botello / Peninsula Clarion)
Mohr resigns as director of KRSA

He has been the executive director of KRSA for nearly three years.

Heather and Hunter Phillips walk through the Kenai Community Library Haunted Hunt with their mom Kumi Phillips on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Scary reads

Spooky literary characters come to life at Kenai library haunted house.

Alaska state Rep. Laddie Shaw, an Anchorage Republican, waits for the start of a so-called technical session on the House floor, Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021, in Juneau, Alaska. The fourth special legislative session of the year began Oct. 4, in Juneau, but there has been little action at the Capitol and little progress toward resolving Alaska’s fiscal issues. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)
Special session plods on with little action

Many legislative offices have been dark and floor sessions in some cases have lasted seconds.

The Kenai Community Library health section is seen on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021. After the Kenai City Council postponed a vote to approve a grant funding health and wellness books, community members set up a GoFundMe to support the purchase of materials. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
After cries of censorship, community raises funds for library

The Kenai City Council voted during its Oct. 20 meeting to postpone acceptance of a $1,500 grant for materials related to health and wellness.

This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. (CDC)
11 new deaths reported

Statewide there were 244 COVID-related hospitalizations as of Tuesday, with 37 of them on ventilators.

Rep. Don Young talks during a June 2021 interview with the Empire. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File)
Young to face off with a Begich yet again

Young, 88, seemed unfazed by Begich’s entry into the race.

A remote galaxy captured by the Hubble Space Telescope is greatly magnified and distorted by the effects of gravitationally warped space. (Image via NASA)
Grant brings NASA to library

The grant supports science, technology, engineering, arts and math programming for patrons.

Most Read