A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka aircrew medically evacuates a 65-year-old woman from the cruise ship Zuiderdam in Cross Sound, Alaska, Aug. 21, 2022. (Petty Officer 3rd Class Ian Gray / USCG)

A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka aircrew medically evacuates a 65-year-old woman from the cruise ship Zuiderdam in Cross Sound, Alaska, Aug. 21, 2022. (Petty Officer 3rd Class Ian Gray / USCG)

Coast Guard aircrew medevacs woman near Cross Sound

The passenger was suffering from loss of vision.

A Coast Guard air crew from Coast Guard Air Station Sitka medevaced a woman from a cruise ship near Cross Sound on Sunday evening.

The 65-year-old woman embarked aboard the Zuiderdam was experiencing loss of vision, according to the Coast Guard.

The crew of the Zuiderdam contacted Sector Juneau watchstanders at about 5 p.m. Sunday requesting a medevac. The aircrew, flying an MH-60 Jayhawk, arrived on-scene at about 7:30 p.m., but were unable to hoist the woman due to a dense marine layer which threatened visibility, according to the Coast Guard, requiring a different rendezvous location.

At just after 10 p.m., with improved conditions in Sitka Sound, the aircrew was able to hoist the woman and transport her to emergency services in Sitka, according to the Coast Guard.

“This medevac worked seamlessly because of the coordination between the cruise ship, command center personnel, and helicopter crew,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Matt Bitinas, Sector Juneau watchstander, in the news release. “The level of communication and cooperation between all involved helped ensure the patient was safely transferred to the next level of care.”

The woman was last reported in stable condition, according to the news release.

• Contact reporter Michael S. Lockett at 757-621-1197 or mlockett@juneauempire.com.

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