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Skiff Hits Rocks – Two Rescued, One Charged

A man and woman have been rescued after their 17-foot skiff ran aground near Kanga Bay, south of Sitka, Alaska, on Dec 27. Both being thrown overboard, the man injured his head and face, said Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Shawn Eggert. The boat drifted away stranding the couple.

Sitka emergency operators received a 911 call and dispatched a Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Sitka. A Sitka Fire Department boat also responded to the scene. The two people were hoisted to the helicopter and flown to Sitka for medical treatment.

Weather at the time of the rescue was clear with 11 mph winds and temperature of about 29 degrees.

Charges of Driving Under the Influence have since been leveled against the driver of the skiff that collided with the charted rocks in the vicinity of Kanga Bay last month on Saturday, December 27th.

20-year-old Chatham Conner was issued a summons to appear in Sitka Court for “charges of DUI, Misconduct Involving Weapons IV, Assault IV, and Reckless Endangerment,” according to the trooper dispatch.

The Sitka Fire Department launched a watercraft and the U.S. Coast Guard launched an MH-60 helicopter from Air Station Sitka and responded to the scene of the crash in Kanga Bay last month. When they arrived at the scene, they found that Conner and his passenger had crashed into a rock pile and had been ejected from their 17-foot skiff onto the rocks.

Conner suffered head injuries from the collision while his passenger reported no injuries in the incident. Conner was transported to the Mount Edgecumbe Hospital for treatment of his injuries.

Conner was scheduled to appear in court to answer to the charges on January 20th.