Guardian Flight, a Utah based air ambulance company, discontinued their search for the remains of the Juneau based crew whose plane crashed near Kake, Alaska in late January.
Guardian senior vice president Randy Lyman issued the following statement:
While we are planning a helicopter search of the shoreline for any aircraft fragments that may have washed up recently, Guardian Flight’s two-month search for our beloved crew members, the company’s aircraft and its cockpit voice recorder in waters off the coast of Alaska is coming to an end after exhausting all avenues of exploration and recovery. Unfortunately, the detailed and methodical search has not yet revealed any of the remains of our friends aboard the aircraft when it crashed. This is very disappointing to their families and our entire Guardian Flight team and extended family of first responders, air medical transporters and health care professionals.
We were successful in locating and recovering the airplane’s Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR), which has been transported to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) headquarters in Washington, D.C. for further analysis. We are thankful for the assistance rendered over the past two months by the NTSB’s regional office in Anchorage during trying times and despite difficult weather conditions during our search and recovery efforts.
Guardian Flight has also been able to locate and recover significant portions of the aircraft during this process. We have identified and raised from the ocean depths a number of fragmented major assemblies of the aircraft, including the cockpit, fuselage, tail, engines, propeller blades, wing sections, and landing gears. These will be transported to Juneau for further analysis by the NTSB.
We thank everyone who has helped in our search following the loss, including many good Samaritans, the U.S. Coast Guard, the NTSB, Alaska State Troopers, local law enforcement, and our dedicated search team. We have searched 7 square miles of ocean and ocean floor and traversed over 700 linear miles by ship to locate our cherished friends, the CVR and aircraft. Further, we have engaged Metron Scientific Solutions, experts in underwater search and recovery efforts, to aid us in the evaluation of our search to date. Our search team and the professionals in such efforts have concluded that we have exhausted all our remaining options in our underwater search and recovery efforts.
This is a very sad time for us and our team, the families of our friends who died in this tragedy, and for everyone associated with flying patients in need of a higher level of care. Please reflect on the lives taken and pray for those lost at sea and everyone impacted by this heartbreak. We will be planning a memorial to recognize and celebrate the lives of our departed friends in Juneau in the next few months.
Randy Lyman, Guardian Flight
March 27th 9:00PM CT Update