JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska — Alaska Air National Guardsmen of the 176th Wing rescued five people from three separate incidents Aug. 11 and 12 at different locations throughout Southcentral and Interior Alaska.
For the first rescue mission Aug. 11, the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center received a report from the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport Air Traffic Control tower that a Cessna 172 crashed about 20 miles south of Anchorage on the Kenai Peninsula.
At the request of the AKRCC, 176th Wing launched a 210th Rescue Squadron HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter with 212th Rescue Squadron Pararescuemen onboard.
The Pave Hawk crew located the wreckage delivered the Pararescuemen to the scene, and extracted the three uninjured occupants from the crash site. The crew transported them to Providence Alaska Medical Center and released them to medical personnel.
For the next rescue, Aug. 12, the 176th Wing launched a 210th RQS HH-60G Pave Hawk, with 212th RQS Pararescuemen onboard at the request of AKRCC to rescue an injured hunter.
The Pave Hawk located the hunter about 55 miles south of Fairbanks, extracted and transported him to the JBER hospital.
For the final rescue, the176th Wing launched a 210th RQS HH-60G Pave Hawk, with 212th RQS Pararescuemen onboard at the request of the AKRCC when they received a report of a crashed Cessna 180 10 miles north of Palmer from the pilot’s spouse. The pilot also used a satellite communication device to talk to AKRCC controllers to aid the rescue.
The Pave Hawk located the wreckage and hoisted the Pararescuemen to the scene, extracting the lone occupant from the crash site. The crew transported the survivor to Providence Alaska Medical Center and released him to medical personnel.
Alaska Air National Guardsmen Capt. AKRCC senior mission controller Seth Peterson said it’s critical to be prepared when going into the Alaska wilderness.
“You should pack a survival kit for two or three days,” he said. “With bad weather, you should be able to support yourself until help arrives.”
210th RQS, 212th RQS and the AKRCC received credit for five saves for these missions.