Michigan Hunter Survives Bush Plane Crash on Alaskan Moose Hunt

by Sean Griffin
(Photo by DeAgostini/Getty Images)

A Michigan man named Casey West left the state and headed to Alaska for a moose hunt trip. However, on one of the days of his excursion, he and two other individuals were involved in a terrible plane crash. Fortunately, all three people escaped without major injuries. Images of the incident can be seen here.

West is a nurse at Ascension Genesys Hospital in Grand Blanc. He was absolutely thrilled to embark on the hunt of the lifetime in Alaska.

However, his wife, Samantha wasn’t so thrilled. She increased her husband’s life insurance policy ahead of the trip. She was very concerned over the safety of a bush plane. It was by far the biggest risk of such a trip. Around 10 crashes occur per season in these planes.

However, her fears ended up being well-founded. West said that flying by bush plane was the only way to get there. He also told her that getting in a car accident was more likely. that flying by a bush, or float, plane is the only way to get around Alaska, and a car accident would be more likely.

West and his two companions arrived in King Salmon on September 11.

The next day, a bush pilot flew them without incident to Unit 9E. This is a game management area in the Alaska Peninsula.

However, the next time they flew in the plane after a day’s hunt, things went horribly wrong.

West described what happened next as the plane rose from a lake containing 15-foot embankments on three sides.

West Describes the Moment of Plane Crash in Detail

“We took off north because there was no bank — we’re going, going, going, and all of a sudden, we got hit by a huge wind gust,” he said. “We weren’t high enough off the water and the wing hit the water and dragged and spun us to the left. The pilot was pulling at the lever to get the plane up, and I said, ‘Oh my God, we’re gonna hit the bank.’ And we hit it so hard, we shot up into the air 70 to 80 yards, spinning and then nosedived right into the Earth.”

West put his right hand over his head and stuck his left hand out just before impact. He also said he yelled a few curse words.

The entire episode was over in a matter of seconds. The crash flipped the aircraft upside down. West struck his head and suffered bruises over an eighth of his body. However, his left hand earned the most visible damage.

“Cal, you ok?” he yelled. He said he heard an answer in the affirmative. He then unstrapped his seatbelt and fell to the ceiling.

The pilot sustained a head injury that would require 17 stitches. He yelled for West to get out of the plane through the front window.

The three then ran from the wreckage. It completely relieved their companion plane who thought they had just seen a fatal crash.

West couldn’t believe they were alive either. He then sent an SOS text to emergency responders notifying them of the plane crash. Fortunately, all three passengers survived the scary incident.