Anne Hillman, Alaska Public Media
The Ted Stevens International Airport was shut down for about three hours at around midnight on Sunday after a passenger made a joke about a bomb in a suitcase. The Anchorage Daily News reports that 44-year-old Peter Friesema, a hockey referee from Colorado, joked that his friend’s bag could have a bomb in it. The airport was evacuated, people were stuck waiting in the cold, and about half a dozen flights were impacted.
An Alaska State Trooper was shot and a man died during a traffic stop near Wasilla around 4 a.m. on Saturday. According to department reports, the trooper was gathering information on three people in the vehicle when 22-year-old Nicholas Leo Frazier of Anchorage got out of the van and started shooting at the trooper with a handgun. The trooper was wounded but returned fire.
Searchers located the plane that crashed north of Dillingham in about 40 feet of water at the bottom of Tikchik Lake on Tuesday evening. As of last night, State troopers have not yet reported finding the body of the pilot and sole victim, 71-year-old Albert “Newt” Ball.
Two men died in separate boating accidents in Southcentral Alaska on Monday. According to State Trooper reports, at around 5 p.m. on Monday three men were boating up Twenty Mile River when the prop hit a log and the aluminum boat was pushed into a log jam.
This week we’re bringing you the first in a new reporting series from the producers of Kids These Days! In twelve reports from across the state, they’re asking the question: “What’s it like to be young in rural Alaska?” Today, Sarah Gonzales in Kake and Anne Hillman in Barrow find out why teaching indigenous language to children is so important.
Family members of an Anchorage woman who went missing in July reported finding her sweatshirt near Six Mile Creek this Sunday, about half a mile from where she was last seen. A kayaker found what was thought to be Valerie Sifsof’s shirt in the same area in late August. State trooper reports say the area has been flooded with rains and high waters since then, but they will search the area with cadaver dogs as soon as conditions allow it. Forty-three year old Sifsof was last seen when on a camping trip near mile 64 of the Seward Highway on July 7.
The Center for Disease Control says that Alaska is not one of the 23 states that received a contaminated epidural steroid injection product. The injection has caused fungal meningitis in 91 patients in the Lower 48. Seven have died. The company that produced the injection has voluntarily recalled all of its products.
Two people were injured and taken to the hospital when an East Anchorage home caught on fire on Saturday evening. The Anchorage Fire Department said that smoke and flames were visible from the residence when the first of 15 fire crews arrived on scene at about 8 p.m. The small house sustained about $30,000 of damage. The cause is under investigation.
The State of Alaska will receive just over half a million dollars from an international health care company because the company illegally marketed a drug to nursing homes.
A new survey of Kodiak Island Borough says that at least 44 percent of the women there have experienced sexual violence, intimate partner violence, or both types. The University of Alaska Anchorage Justice Center says that their survey estimates are conservative since they only spoke with 423 women who have either a cell phone or a landline and can speak English. The study states that instances of violence may be higher among women who were excluded from the study.
The Healy coal powered electric plant could be back online within two years. Golden Valley Electric in Fairbanks spent $50 million on the plant, which sits just outside of Denali National Park. The EPA is giving them 18 months to install $40 million worth of pollution controls. The utility also plans on spending $20 million to improve the safety of the operations. The experimental "clean coal" plant operated briefly in the late 1990s before closing in 2000 because of safety and reliability concerns.
After further investigations and an autopsy, police are saying that the woman whose body was found in the parking lot of a west Anchorage church died of self-inflicted wounds. 44-year-old Marya Abramczyk's's death was initially deemed suspicious. They are not releasing any other details.
The demographics of Alaska, including rural populations, are changing in some unexpected ways. Between 2000 and 2010, the population of Pacific Islanders in the state doubled to more than 12,000. And they aren’t just in the state’s urban centers. More than 3 percent of Barrow residents identify as Pacific Islanders. As part of our series looking at rural life in Alaska, APRN contributor Anne Hillman spoke with members of Barrow’s Samoan community to find out how the islanders from the far south fit into the small community of the far north.
A nine-year old boy in Pilot Station died on Friday after being shot in the chest with an air rifle by another nine-year-old boy. According to the Anchorage Daily News, the boys were arguing at the time that 4th grader Spencer Polty was killed. Clinic staff in the community of about 500 near Bethel tried unsuccessfully to administer CPR. State Troopers are not holding the other child in custody.
The Southeast Alaska Power Agency is seeking new ways to make hydropower more efficient and more consistent through innovative new technology.
Dutton publishing company announced this week that they will be releasing a book written by a former Navy SEAL from Alaska about the killing of Osama Bin Laden. Fox News revealed the author’s identity this morning.
Enbridge Inc. is proposing to build a pipeline that would transport oil sands crude 730 miles from Alberta, Canada to the coast of British Columbia. From there, the pipeline would fill supertankers headed primarily to China. The fastest route takes them straight through Alaskan waters. KSTK’s Anne Hillman has more about how the proposed project could impact the state.
Some black bears, especially those on the coast of British Columbia, carry a genetic anomaly that makes their fur white. They’re popularly called spirit bears. KSTK’s Anne Hillman spoke to bear biologist Wayne McCrory, who has been studying the bears and trying to protect them for the past 30 years. He says they could be facing a new, larger threat.
Jerry Dowd, the president of Trident Seafoods, is dead of a heart attack. Dowd was on a fishing trip near Bristol Bay on Monday when his death occurred. Dowd began working at Trident in 2004 and was appointed president of the company's domestic operations in 2006. Prior to that he worked at both Tyson's and ConAgra Poultry. His most recent work focused on expanding Trident's operations in China.