Coast Guard medevacs cruise ship Explorer of the Seas passenger in the vicinity of Kake, Alaska

A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter

Air Station Sitka MH-60 FIle Photo

JUNEAU, Alaska — A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka, Alaska, MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew medevaced a passenger from the cruise ship Explorer of the Seas in the vicinity of Kake, Alaska, Tuesday.

The Jayhawk crew safely hoisted the man and transported him to awaiting emergency medical services personnel in Sitka.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Juneau command center received a medevac request from the captain of the Explorer of the Seas stating a 68-year-old man had fallen down stairs, seriously injuring his ribs and suffering other injuries. A Coast Guard flight surgeon was briefed and recommended the medevac. “In a situation like this, our main priority is to get assets on scene as soon as possible to ensure the injured receive the treatment they need,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class John Parker, watchstander at Coast Guard Sector Juneau. “The swift action of the aircrew along with the expertise of the Explorer of the Seas crew allowed the man to be quickly transferred to higher medical care.”

Weather on scene at the time of the hoist was 10-mph winds.

2017 marks the 150th anniversary of the Coast Guard’s presence in Alaska. On August 12, 1867 the Revenue Cutter Lincoln transported the first federal officials to Sitka for the formal transfer of proprietorship from Russia on October 18, 1867. Since then, the Coast Guard’s duty to protect the people and waters of Alaska and the Arctic has grown alongside the 49th state’s ever-increasing role in American commerce, Arctic exploration and national sovereignty.

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