July 21, Big Lake, Alaska / Cessna 185


At about 1500 Alaska time, a float-equipped Cessna 185 was landing on the water when it collided with a personal watercraft on Big Lake. The pilot was not injured but the operator of the watercraft received serious injuries. The pilot said he scanned the landing area from 500 feet as he overflew the lake, and again at 100 feet during the landing approach. As the airplane touched down, the pilot noticed a blurred object on the right side of the airplane and then felt and heard an impact on the right float. When the airplane settled off step, the pilot turned the airplane and observed the watercraft and rider. He noticed other witnesses coming to the aid of the rider and the airplane began to list as the right float assembly began to fill with water, so he beached the airplane. The watercraft operator estimated her speed at between 20 and 35 mph when the airplanes float hit the watercrafts vertical handle bar while the airplane was still airborne. She suffered multiple breaks of her left arm and a slight concussion.


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