Eric Stone, KRBD - Ketchikan

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A killer whale stranded on a rocky beech as seen from above

Killer whale stranded on Prince of Wales Island frees itself

A killer whale that beached itself on Prince of Wales Island on Thursday has freed itself, according to federal biologists.
A large green ferry

Inter-Island Ferry Authority says 3 crew members positive for COVID-19, but schedule won’t be affected

Inter-Island Ferry Authority managers said Tuesday that three crew members have tested positive for COVID-19. IFA General Manager Ron Curtis declined to say exactly when the staff members tested positive, citing ferry authority policy.
A cruise ship is docked with mountains in the background.

7 fully vaccinated people test positive for COVID-19 on UnCruise ship sailing in Southeast Alaska

The company says it’s the first time a fully vaccinated guest has tested positive for the disease on its ships.
A white cruise ship at port

Canada pledges to reopen ports to cruise ships; Murkowski floats maritime law reforms

Canadian authorities say they’ll lift a pandemic-era ban on cruise ships in the country’s waters, but it won’t happen until after the end of Alaska’s 2021 cruise season. The decision means cruise ships could again sail from Vancouver and Victoria to Alaska in 2022.
A woman in a black Tlingit-patterned robe beats on a drum and sings

‘Cruise ships are back, baby’: Alaska’s first large cruise ship in 21 months visits Ketchikan

The first large cruise ship to visit Alaska since 2019 arrived in Ketchikan early on the morning of July 9. The federally mandated test voyage is the symbolic start of the Alaska cruise season.
A small harbor with 30-foot fishing boats on a sunny day with large spruce trees nearby.

Governor’s veto erases $4.4M for new Craig harbor

The Alaska Legislature included funding to get a project for a new harbor in Craig started. But that’ll have to wait for at least another year as Gov. Mike Dunleavy has vetoed the funding.
People gather in front of a cruise ship

Kicking off a season like no other, Alaska’s first big cruise ship since 2019 is on the way

When the Serenade of the Seas ties up on Friday, it’ll be the first ship to visit Ketchikan since October 5, 2019 — 21 months ago.
A fieldwith some mountains in the background

Newly-tested DNA sample led to arrest in 1993 rape case, Ketchikan police say

Ketchikan police have made an arrest in a 28-year-old rape case. Police credit a recent push to end Alaska’s sexual assault kit backlog with identifying the suspect.
An aerial view of some boats in a cove

Former Alaska state ferries expected to head for Spain

The catamarans — Fairweather and Chenega — were recently sold for about $5 million to a Spanish ferry company and are being shipped via the Panama Canal.
A structure, with mountains in the background, painted with Tlingit art.

Metlakatla reports third COVID death; officials link outbreak to pool tournament

Ketchikan-based state public health nurse Arizona Jacobs said last week that the surge of cases in Metlakatla is thought to be linked to the surge of cases in Ketchikan.
The bow of a white cruise ship

Norwegian Cruise Line signs agreement to return to Alaska

In a step toward a limited, late summer cruise season, Norwegian Cruise Line has signed an agreement with the state of Alaska and several of Alaska’s port operators.
A view a cliffside of a community surrounded by water and mountains.

Metlakatla reports COVID-19 death as community faces worst outbreak yet

On Monday, local authorities announced the community’s second death from the disease during the pandemic.

US House passes bill allowing big cruise ships to visit Alaska later this summer

A federal bill that would allow foreign-flagged cruise ships to bypass Canada on their way to Alaska is headed to the president’s desk after unanimously passing the U.S. House of Representatives. That follows the U.S. Senate passing similar legislation earlier this month.
A microscopic image of yellow blobs in a purple background

New COVID case numbers on Alaska’s Panhandle lead state and country

According to state data, the southern panhandle — including Ketchikan, Metlakatla and Prince of Wales Island — has the highest population-adjusted rate of new cases in the state. New infections are appearing at a rate three times higher than any other region in Alaska.
A high school from the outside

Ketchikan wrestling meet linked to 23 COVID cases in Southeast Alaska

Infections were reported in Craig, Klawock, Sitka, Wrangell and Ketchikan.
A woman in an orange coat points to a chart with a graph on the senate floor

There have been two attempts in Congress to save Alaska’s cruise season in the last week. Both have failed.

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The U.S. Senate on Thursday blocked consideration of a waiver that would have allowed foreign-flagged cruise ships to visit Alaska ports this summer.
Three ferries dock at the Ketchikan Shipyard for repairs and upgrades in 2012. All 11 ships would tie up by early July if the Legislature does not reach a budget compromise. (Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska News)

Governor, lawmakers unveil plan to use $76.8M federal windfall to fund ferries for 18 months

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The governor and legislative leaders have agreed on a rough plan to use federal pandemic relief from Congress to help stabilize Alaska’s beleaguered ferry system.
A white woman with long hair

Embattled Ketchikan schools superintendent submits resignation

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The head of Ketchikan’s school district turned in her resignation Friday afternoon. Tribal leaders have been calling on the district to replace her in recent months.
A white shack in a forest

SpaceX considers Alaska-based stations to improve worldwide internet satellite network

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An aerospace and technology company is considering building key parts of a satellite network in Alaska — including Ketchikan, Nome and Fairbanks — that, according to the company, could help improve internet access across the globe.
A paved bike path

Ketchikan police investigate racist, homophobic graffiti at local skate park and trail

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Ketchikan police are investigating racist and homophobic graffiti that appeared around an asphalt trail and a local skate park over the weekend. Police said no suspects have been identified.