SEATTLE — The Coast Guard suspended an active search as of 12:00 p.m. Monday for those missing from the seaplane crash at Mutiny Bay off Whidbey Island pending further developments.
Shortly after 3:30 p.m. Sunday, the Puget Sound Area Coast Guard received word that a seaplane carrying 10 people, including a child, had crashed in the waters off Whidbey Island. Good Samaritans and first responders were the first on the scene and recovered a deceased person. The plane, which was owned by Northwest Seaplanes and operated by Friday Harbor Seaplanes, had left Friday Harbor around 2:50 p.m. and was heading for Renton Municipal Airport when the crash occurred.
The Coast Guard and several local partner agencies, including local county sheriffs, South Whidbey Island Fire & EMS and a helicopter from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island all searched Sunday afternoon. Coast Guard assets involved in the search included the 87-foot Coast Guard Cutters Osprey and Blue Shark, a 45-foot Response Boat-Medium and crew from Station Seattle, an RB-M crew from Station Port Angeles, an MH-65 Dolphin Rescue helicopter crew from Port Angeles Air Force Station, and a C-27J fixed-wing aircraft and crew from Sacramento Air Force Station, Calif.
The two Coast Guard cutters remained on scene overnight and continued the search. Crews resumed the search Monday morning shortly after sunrise. In total, the Coast Guard conducted 26 search sorties, searching 1,283 nautical miles of track line covering an area of approximately 2,100 square nautical miles.
“It’s always difficult to make the decision to stop the search,” said Capt. Daniel Broadhurst, chief of the Coast Guard’s 13th District Incident Management Division. “The hearts of all first responders go out to those who lost a family member, loved one or friend in the accident.”
The National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the cause of the crash. A rib
A guard underwater remotely operated vehicle and drone will continue to assist the NTSB in
looking for wreckage and debris for the next few hours.