USCG MH-60 Crash Probe Advances After Wreckage Retrieved

Efforts to retrieve the downed helicopter in a remote area of Alaska took nearly four weeks and included the efforts of at least six agencies.

Four injured Coast Guard members from Air Station Sitka, Alaska, were taken to the Harborview Medical Center in Seattle to receive medical care following the November 13 crash of a MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter during a search and rescue mission. [Courtesy: U.S. Coast Guard]

A U.S. Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk that went down in Alaska in November during a search and rescue mission has been recovered, advancing an investigation into the mishap, according to the service.

The November 13 accident occurred on Read Island in southeastern Alaska as the MH-60 and four aircrew on board were dispatched from Air Station Sitka in response to a distress call from a fishing boat, the Lydia Marie

All four crewmembers were injured in the accident, two seriously, the Coast Guard reported at the time. All have since been released, the service said Saturday.

On Friday, the aircraft was recovered from the site, prompting the Coast Guard to remove a security zone that had been in effect around the area since the accident occurred.

The Coast Guard's efforts to retrieve the wreckage of the Jayhawk included the U.S. Army’s Downed Aircraft Recovery Team, U.S. Forest Service, National Weather Service, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, Petersburg Fire & Rescue, as well as independent contractors.

“We are grateful our four crewmembers were released from Harborview Medical Center and are on the road to recovery,” said Coast Guard Captain Brian McLaughlin, head of the crisis action team that led recovery efforts. We are also incredibly thankful to the many people and organizations who helped us recover the aircraft. Getting the helicopter to where our investigators can better examine the wreckage is the next step in the ongoing investigation."

The investigation into the crash remains ongoing, the Coast Guard said.

Kimberly is managing editor of FLYING Digital.

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