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Plane crashes near Cold Bay, pilot escapes uninjured

Tegan Hanlon

A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter rescued an uninjured pilot from the site of a plane crash on the Alaska Peninsula on Wednesday, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Wildlife troopers flew over the mouth of Joshua Green River, 20 miles northeast of Cold Bay, and spotted an overturned Cessna 185 on a short sandbar. The area is in the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.

People were seen standing around the plane and the aircraft appeared unoccupied. But troopers could not land or communicate by radio with the pilot, later identified as Matthew L. Owen of Kasilof, and notified the Coast Guard, according to a trooper report.

Petty Officer Jonathan Klingenberg said a Coast Guard helicopter was sent to pick up the pilot, who was the sole occupant of the plane.

"He was just fine and we brought him back to Cold Bay," Klingenberg said.

He had no additional information about how the crash occurred.

Troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen said the plane's owner is responsible for retrieving the craft. She said a trooper hasn't been able to contact the pilot.

The National Transportation Safety Board has been notified about the crash.


Reach Tegan Hanlon at or 257-4589.