Serious operational flaws within Hageland Aviation -- by far the biggest airline in Alaska in terms of flights -- and struggles within the Federal Aviation Administration contributed to a crash in 2013 near St. Mary’s that killed four people, documents released Thursday suggest.

Lisa Demer
The Wasilla pilot killed in a Prince William Sound plane crash last week had hoped to descend below the clouds and land on an island before he went down, according to a National Transportation Safety Board report.Zaz Hollander
The crew of a troopers vessel found the man's body and the Cessna 180 he had been flying in the waters off Culross Island in western Prince William Sound, near Whittier. Alaska Dispatch News
The pilot of the Cessna 180 contacted the Rescue Coordination Center in Anchorage on Tuesday afternoon to report engine trouble in the area of Perry Island, on the west side of Prince William Sound. Alaska Dispatch News
Era Group, a worldwide helicopter operator primarily serving the oil and gas industry, announced Wednesday it will sell its fixed-base operation at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport to Landmark Aviation.Egan Millard
An Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 departing from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to San Jose, California, Thursday evening returned to Seattle because of a bird strike. Associated Press
A United Airlines flight from Anchorage to Chicago made an emergency landing in Fargo, North Dakota after a woman experienced a medical emergency, local officials said. Few details were immediately available, but the plane was stranded in Fargo because its onboard medical oxygen supply was depleted treating the woman, said authorities.Associated Press
The anniversary of the 1964 Alaska earthquake will be observed in perpetuity, thanks in part to the efforts of a former air guardsman whose friends were among the casualties.Mike Dunham
The Alaskan Aviation Safety Foundation will host its annual Seaplane Seminar at the Loussac Library in Anchorage on Saturday, April 25, for floatplane enthusiasts and aircraft owners looking forward to the summer flying season.Colleen Mondor
Alaska Airlines said the leader of a baggage-loading crew noticed the worker was missing and tried to call and text him before concluding that he had gone home when his 9 1/2-hour shift ended.Manuel Valdes, David Koenig | AP