Ketchikan residents on the South End may have noticed a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter flying search patterns Monday night.
According to the District 17 Public Affairs Office in Juneau, the search was initiated when a petty officer on board the cutter Anthony Petit saw what he thought might be a person in the water.
“They spotted an object that appeared to be off the stern of a red Lund tied off to a mooring ball across the Tongass Narrows from Station Ketchikan,” said Chief Petty Officer Shawn Eggert. “They were unable to determine exactly what the object was, but on the off chance that it might be a person in distress, we immediately launched a Station Ketchikan small-boat crew.”
Eggert said the Coast Guard also called in a helicopter search team from Air Station Sitka, and contacted the owner of the Lund. Eggert said the boat’s owner was not aware of anyone using it that day.
“The owner conducted a foot search along the shore while the Coast Guard personnel conducted their searches from both the small boat and the helicopter,” he said. “Basically, they found no indication of anyone in danger.”
Therefore, Eggert said, the search was suspended. He said any report that someone might be in danger will trigger a Coast Guard response.
“We take all situations where someone might be in the water or in need of aid very seriously, and we’re going to launch our assets to go out and help these people as quickly as possible,” he said.
Eggert said Monday night’s search will not resume unless they hear of someone who has gone missing recently.