A US Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter medevaced a crewmember suffering from a head injury from the South Korean research icebreaker Araon 250 miles north of Barrow, Wednesday.
The helicopter crew, forward deployed to Barrow in anticipation of the forward operating location opening on Thursday, safely hoisted the 43-year-old male from the Araon and transported him to emergency medical personnel in Barrow.
Coast Guard 17th District command center watchstanders received the medevac request from the crew of the Araon Tuesday afternoon. The icebreaker crew began heading south to get within range of the Jayhawk helicopters in Barrow. Command center watchstanders also contacted the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Healy, who are engaged in science missions in the Arctic, to support communications with helicopter crews for the flight.
Once the Araon closed the distance to land, both Jayhawk helicopter crews at forward operating location Barrow launched to rendezvous with the icebreaker. The aircrews arrived on-scene, safely hoisted the injured man and an accompanying translator, and returned to Barrow.
The FOL in Barrow is part of the 17th District’s Arctic Shield 2014, in concurrence with the Coast Guard Arctic Strategy.
Weather on scene was reported as 35 degrees, 17 mph winds and heavy fog.