1 dead, 1 rescued after plane crash near Quilcene


An Olympia man died Sept. 29 in a plane crash on Buck Mountain near Quilcene.

Lance T. Aikins, 69, was found dead at the scene. A second person in the crash, who had not been identified as of Monday, was rescued and flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

Calls came in at 10:38 p.m. of a small passenger aircraft that had crashed on the mountain.

Members of the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Quilcene Fire & Rescue and the Brinnon Fire Department began an immediate search of the area based on GPS location, according to a press release from Jefferson County Chief Criminal Deputy Art Frank. The location was within the Olympic National Forest and extremely remote, the release stated.

The Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island Search and Rescue and its Rescue 75 helicopter were asked to assist in the search. Because of trees and cloud cover, the plane was not located from the air.

A team from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and Olympic Mountain Rescue hiked in and located the victims, Frank wrote. One person had died by the time authorities arrived. He was later identified as Aikins by Jefferson County coroner Michael Haas.

The second person in the plane was treated for injuries and taken to an area where he could be picked up by NAS Whidbey Island Search and Rescue and airlifted to Seattle, according to the press release.

It was unclear whether Aikins was a passenger or the pilot of the plane.

Cause of the crash is unknown at this time. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) responded to the scene to investigate the crash. The NTSB could not be reached for comment as of press time.


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