State Briefs

Posted: Sunday, July 13, 2003

Cruise lines add three Alaska cruises a week

SEATTLE - Seattle's cruise ship business will grow in 2004 with three new boats sailing each week out of the Port of Seattle for Alaska.

The new additions means that seven ships a week will leave from Seattle for Alaska, up from four per week currently. Over the course of the summer, the port expects 140 sailings.

Princess Cruises and Holland America Line, which both operate one sailing a week currently, are both adding another ship. Celebrity Cruises is also joining the cruise lines in Seattle, offering a Friday sailing aboard the Mercury. Norwegian Cruise Line will continue its two sailings a week.

Pilot dead after crash near Kachemak Bay

ANCHORAGE - A pilot died late Friday morning after his single engine aircraft crashed near Kachemak Bay.

Stephen Finley, 49, of Hopewell, N.J., was flying a Cessna 206 when it crashed into English Bay at about 11 a.m., Alaska State Troopers said.

The plane was operated by Homer-based Smokey Bay air taxi service. Finley was the only person aboard the aircraft.

Victor Vodila, 22, of Florida, witnessed the crash. He was in Nanwalek fishing for the summer. The plane bounced on the runway until it hit the middle of the landing strip, Vodila said. Finley then aborted the landing, taking off again.

Vodila saw the plane turn right to miss nearby cliffs. A crosswind then pushed the plane onto its side. The plane went wing down into the bay and the aircraft flipped over, Vodila said.

The aircraft landed about 200 yards off shore from Nanwalek Beach, troopers said.

Vodila rushed to the crash scene, lassoed one of the tires and waited for rescuers to arrive. The plane sank about 25 to 35 feet into the water, troopers said.

Man's body found in South Anchorage lake

ANCHORAGE - The body of a 44-year-old Anchorage man was recovered Friday from a South Anchorage lake, officials said

Donald Adams was found in water near the bike trail that runs along the northern edge of the lake.

Anchorage police said an officer was checking the trail adjacent to the lake a little after 7 a.m. The officer found Adams' bike with a trailer attached near a picnic table. The officer also found Adams' wallet, personal items and beer cans. The officer searched the lake and spotted Adams' body.

Herring catch spoiled after overheating

UNALASKA - Some unchilled herring has gone bad in the Aleutian Islands.

The Dutch Harbor gillnet herring fishery will not reopen despite falling short of the herring quota, said Forrest Bowers, with the state Department of Fish and Game in Unalaska, in part because some of the catch spoiled due to a lack of ice, warm weather and a wait for processing.

The final catch came in at 108 tons after two days of processing, short of the quota of 116 tons. However, the quota likely was exceeded when spoilage is figured in, which Bowers said is estimated at 12 tons. That would put the total catch at 120 tons.

Of the 108 tons recorded on fish tickets, 12 tons were spoiled, according to reports from the sole buyer.

Besides the recorded 12 tons of rotten herring, another estimated 8 tons of old fish were not accepted by the processor. Fish and Game based that estimate on the amount fishermen reported dumping overboard, Bowers said.



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