by Christine Kim and Rebecca Palsha
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- A helicopter crash Wednesday morning claimed the lives of three Coast Guard crewmen based in Sitka. The Coast Guard says four men were aboard the MH-60 Jayhawk when it went down off James Island near La Push, Wash.
It's standard procedure for Coast Guard crews to check in every 15 minutes when they're flying. When the helicopter's crew didn't check in at 9:30 a.m. or 9:45 a.m., the Coast Guard had already launched a rescue effort.
At a Wednesday afternoon press conference, the Coast Guard announced the crew was based in Sitka. Officials are not releasing their names, but say there was only one survivor in the all-male crew.
"He did have a broken arm and a broken leg and some superficial lacerations, but again nothing life-threatening," said Capt. Salvatore Palmeri, chief of the Coast Guard's Incident Management Division.