KETCHIKAN (AP) The Coast Guard and the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities plan to build a helicopter landing pad in Ketchikan.
The pad at Wolff Point would bring medical patients and rescued mariners closer to the local hospital.
Medical evacuations performed by the Coast Guard have increased in numbers and severity over the last five years, the agency said.
But helicopters bringing patients to the Ketchikan hospital must land at the airport on Gravina Island and be transported across the narrows to the hospital, delaying medical attention by an hour or two.
The new facility could be ready in about a year.
The Coast Guard is seeking public comment on the plan.
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