12-year-old airlifted from Neah Bay with head injuries

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NEAH BAY — The Coast Guard flew an injured 12-year-old boy from Neah Bay to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle last week after he suffered a skull fracture and head trauma.

“He was injured while riding his bicycle,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Nate Littlejohn, Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound spokesman, on Friday.

The Sophie Trettevick Indian Health Center at the Makah Reservation requested the Coast Guard’s help Thursday after Airlift Northwest declined to fly to Neah Bay because of dangerously low visibility, the Coast Guard said.

A worker at the Neah Bay clinic declined to comment on the boy’s condition Friday or provide his identity for a check with the Seattle hospital.

Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound launched an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles at 2:11 p.m.

The four-person crew landed 32 minutes later at Coast Guard Station Neah Bay, where medics helped load the boy into the helicopter.

The crew arrived at Harborview at 4:17 p.m., Littlejohn said.

Craig O’Brien, operations officer at Coast Guard Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles, said the MH-65 Dolphin crews train in all weather conditions and assist the public in roughly 120 to 160 cases per year.

“The Coast Guard has an effective relationship with our tribal partners,” he added.

Earlier this month, the Coast Guard and the Makah signed a memorandum of agreement to reaffirm their partnership, cooperation and coordination in pollution prevention and oil spill response in a ceremony at the Jackson Federal Building in Seattle.

Last modified: April 20. 2013 5:37PM
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