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Regional

Stories from the KUCB Newsroom from the Aleutian Region, the Pribilof Islands, the Alaska Peninsula, and beyond.

Laura Kraegel/KUCB

Look to the farthest end of the Aleutian chain, so far west that it’s actually east, and you’ll find the Komandorski Islands of Russia.

In 1867, the Alaska Purchase separated them from the rest of the Aleutian and Pribilof Islands. But today, people across the archipelago are still connected by a common history.

A recent cultural exchange helped to renew those ties, bringing Russians and Alaskans together on St. Paul Island.

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PenAir

PenAir is still trying to determine why an airplane engine failed last week, forcing one of its Saab 340s to make an emergency landing in Sand Point.

PenAir's Mike Walsh said mechanics have removed the flight data recorder, or "black box," which documents a plane’s trip history.

They’re sending the device for inspection to pinpoint the cause of the failure.

In the meantime, the plane will remain in Sand Point.

U.S. Coast Guard District 17

The U.S. Coast Guard rescued an injured mariner Wednesday morning after he was hit in the head by block of frozen fish.

Officials say the F/V Defender was fishing 260 miles north of Cold Bay when a 37-pound block of frozen fish struck the man’s head.

A Coast Guard helicopter crew stationed in Cold Bay was sent to hoist the 21-year-old crew member from the vessel. He was transported to St. Paul and then Anchorage for emergency medical care.

Courtesy of Nate Julian

A PenAir flight made an emergency landing in Sand Point on Tuesday, following an engine failure shortly after takeoff.

The Saab 340 aircraft returned to the airport safely, but passenger Nate Julian said it was a scary experience.

“It was kind of sketchy," he said. "A little bit hairy there for a minute.”

Headed to Anchorage, Julian said everything seemed normal until the plane reached the end of the runway.

“They went to ramp up the engines for takeoff," he said. "The left engine cut out a minute and then ramped up. Not a normal sound.”

Laura Kraegel/KUCB

While students head back to class across Alaska, the school on St. George Island has stayed closed.

District officials said it’s the latest casualty in a statewide trend where small, rural communities struggle to hold on to their kids.

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