Coast Guard medevacs diver near False Pass, Alaska

Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter file photo by PA1 Kurt Fredrickson

Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter file photo by PA1 Kurt Fredrickson

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The Coast Guard medevaced a man after a diving accident near False Pass, Thursday.

An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew based out of Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak hoisted the man and brought him to receive medical care at Cold Bay Clinic in Cold Bay.

Coast Guard watchstanders in the 17th District command center in Juneau received a report at about 1:50 p.m. detailing the accident. The man was diving on a wreck about nine miles northeast of False Pass when a piece of the wreck broke free and pinned him to the sea floor at a depth of about 65 feet for several minutes. He was able to free himself and surface before the Coast Guard was notified. The dive master aboard the dive tender vessel Makushin Bay reported the accident and described the man’s condition, which included bleeding from the nose and possible injuries to the left side of his body.

The Coast Guard duty flight surgeon recommended a medevac.

“The diver’s ability to free himself, coupled with our aircrew’s proximity to the accident today provided a favorable outcome,” said Lt. Stephen Nolan, command duty officer for the case. “The aircrew just so happened to be in Cold Bay on a separate, unrelated mission. As vast a place as Alaska is, being able to get to someone who needs help in time is always one of the biggest challenges our crews face. We were grateful to be able to do that today.”

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