Coast Guard rescues hunter, continues search for another near Behm Canal, Alaska

Coast Guard Alaska News
JUNEAU, Alaska — An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Sitka, rescued a hunter from a cabin on the Chickamin River off Behm Canal, and is continuing the search for a second man Sunday.

The Jayhawk crew transported the severely hypothermic hunter to emergency medical services in Ketchikan. The Jayhawk crew and a 47-foot Motor Life-Boat crew from Coast Guard Station Ketchikan are searching the vicinity of Chickamin River off Behm Canal for the second man. The Coast Guard Cutter Chandeleur has also been tasked to assist in the search. The man was reportedly last seen seven days ago by his companion, departing in a seven-foot skiff to return to fishing vessel Abundance with fresh game.

Coast Guard watchstanders at the Sector Juneau command center received a call from the crew of the motor vessel Wilderness Adventure on Sunday morning reporting they had found the 44-foot Abundance adrift with no one aboard in the vicinity of Saks Cove.

The watchstanders issued an urgent marine information broadcast requesting the assistance of mariners in the area to locate the hunters and directed the launch of the Jayhawk and MLB crews. The Wilderness Adventure conducted a shoreline search of the Burroughs Bay and did not see any sign of the hunters.

“Our primary concern is locating the second hunter,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Melanie Sinclair, an operations specialist and search and rescue controller at the Sector Juneau command center. “We have high winds and rain in the area and he may have been exposed to the elements for several days. Anyone who may have seen him is asked to call the command center.”

Current weather conditions for area include 15 mph winds with 1-foot seas and periods of rain. A gale warning is in effect for much of Southeast Alaska.

Anyone with information regarding the hunters is asked to call the Sector Juneau command center at 907-463-2990.

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