Coast Guard medevacs passenger from cruise ship Diamond Princess in Southeast Alaska

Coast Guard Alaska News
JUNEAU, Alaska — A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka based MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew medevaced a 72-year-old woman from a cruise ship in Icy Strait Thursday.

The Jayhawk crew rendezvoused with the 952-foot cruise ship Diamond Princess in Icy Strait, safely hoisted the woman aboard and transported her in stable to condition to awaiting emergency medical personnel in Sitka for further transport to Sitka Community Hospital for care.

Coast Guard watchstanders at the 17th District command center in Juneau received the request for the medevac from crew of the cruise ship Thursday evening. The crew reported that the woman was suffering from convulsions. The Coast Guard duty flight surgeon concurred with the need for the medevac and watchstanders directed the launch of the Jayhawk crew who safely conducted the medevac.

“Our hoist capable helicopters are ideal for aiding cruise ship passengers by hoisting them safely and transporting them more quickly than can be done by boat to a higher level of care,” said Lt. Sarah Morin, a search and rescue controller at the 17th District command center. “Southeast Alaska receives a high volume of cruise ship traffic and we work closely with the vessels to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone aboard.”

Weather conditions at the time of the medevac were reportedly 12 mph winds with calm seas and a visibility of six miles. Icy Strait is roughly 100 miles north of Sitka.

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