VIDEO: Salvage crews retrieve plane whose pilot made emergency landing off Beach Drive

1:34 PM: Thanks to Erin for the photo. Crews from West Seattle-headquartered Global Diving and Salvage have arrived off the 6000 block of Beach Drive SW, where a pilot made an emergency landing in shallow water a little over 24 hours ago (WSB coverage here). The landing was made after the Cessna’s engine quit (according to Boeing Field radio exchanges, as pointed out by WSB readers), and both men in the plane got out OK. The plane was almost fully revealed at low tide after 7 this morning:

(Photo by James Bratsanos)

Here’s a from-the-water look, courtesy of Kona Greg:

1:46 PM: Just in from our crew, more vessels clustered at the salvage scene:

2:16 PM: The plane’s being brought out of the water:

2:34 PM: Shortly after that last update, our crew reports, the plane was placed on the barge, and taken away. (Photo by James Bratsanos, added:)

We haven’t found contact information for its registered owners, a Las Vegas-based LLC.

2:44 PM: We’ll be adding video. (Update – here it is:)

Meantime, we checked with Global about what happens next. They’ll be taking the plane to a holding dock on the Duwamish River, and from there, they say, it’s up to the owners to arrange to reclaim it.

3:30 PM: Three more photos by WSB’s Patrick Sand:

Thanks again to all the Beach Drive and vicinity residents who have shared photos, info, (and a photography location!) since this happened Monday afternoon.

ADDED TUESDAY NIGHT: A postscript, resulting from a discussion in comments: Jeff Poschwatta of AvTech Services, LLC, which he describes as an aircraft-recovery business based in South King County, says his company put together the salvage operation. He was contacted by an insurance adjuster for Galvin Flying at Boeing Field, which a reader tells us was accountable for the plane (though records showed it registered in Las Vegas). He says he “in turn contracted Global Diving & Salvage, who obtained Manson Construction for a barge, tug and crane.” More than a dozen people from the three firms were out there: “We worked together to make this a successful recovery in quick time. I know the USCG, SPD, Dept/Ecology, Fish & Wildlife were happy with our efforts.”

13 Replies to "VIDEO: Salvage crews retrieve plane whose pilot made emergency landing off Beach Drive"

  • Petert August 1, 2017 (1:42 pm)

    Haopening now:

    This is better than when they picked up the house from 6001 Beach a couple of years ago…

  • old timer August 1, 2017 (2:50 pm)


    I wonder:

    Who initiates a salvage project like this and, how much does it cost?

    • ProjectAdmin August 1, 2017 (5:56 pm)

      The owner of the item to be salvaged typically initiates the recovery, but in some instances local, state, or federal government agencies make the request due to public or environmental hazards. Heavy lift operations are typically a more specialized due to the complexity of weather, currant, and any shifting weight cause by damage. In this case, the divers secured the plane to the rigging while Manson Construction provided the Derrick to lift the plane.

      • Av August 2, 2017 (11:36 am)

        AvTech Services LLC was incharge of the operation. 

    • Biffer August 2, 2017 (6:49 pm)

      Av Tech Sevices, aircraft recovery.

  • Me August 1, 2017 (2:53 pm)

    Interested to know if the recovery was done under maritime salvage laws? Example: the owner did not arrange for the recovery and global now has salvage rights to the plane.

  • 22blades August 1, 2017 (4:10 pm)

    I don’t know if the insurance carrier arranged it but that sure was an expensive way to recover a plane. They could have winched it 100′ and taken the wings off; a simple proposition. Then take it to storage for the NTSB. Either way, being submerged in saltwater, soaked radios, toasted engine and broken engine mounts, it probably is a mess to  restore if not a write off.

  • My two cents ... August 1, 2017 (5:10 pm)

    Insurance will probably cover the cost.  With the speed of the salvage, may be tied to environmental concerns/regulations (gasoline, engine oil).

  • kaxelb August 1, 2017 (6:49 pm)

    Great pictures! Just like a lot of news stories, there is always so much speculation. From the pictures of the preserved aircraft, it looks like the pilot performed a textbook ditching of their disabled aircraft. Hopefully the plane was insured, however, insurance is not required if the aircraft is solely owned and not used for commercial use, usually it’s not necessary, but on a 200k aircraft it would be advisable. Most likely the NTSB will scope the engine and find a broken crank shaft or scorched cylinders which ultimately led to its engine failure. Lack of oil from a broken line, leak or crack is most likely the result. The worst possible scenario would be fuel starvation, but unlikely from witness accounts. Anyways, kudos to the pilot and I hope the cost and investigation are painless. 

  • dona August 1, 2017 (7:50 pm)

    It’s all well when it ends well

  • Rachel Odell August 2, 2017 (9:09 am)

    Greetings – wonderful piece! Is it possible that I could be put in touch with the photo contributors of this article?  My contact information is below. 

    Rachel Odell


    Manson Construction Co.

    5209 East Marginal Way
    South | P.O. Box 24067 | Seattle, WA 98124
    direct 206.764.8573 | mobile 206.518.1867 | office 206.762.0850 | fax


    • WSB August 2, 2017 (9:12 am)

      Some of the photos are ours, some were contributed by readers. Our contact info (WSB co-publishers) is on the CONTACT tab in our navigation bar, or just e-mail our main address –

  • Biffer August 2, 2017 (6:44 pm)

    Global was hired by Av Tect Services  LLC to help retrieve  the airplane, and it was taken to a  Hanger for Faa / Ntsb  investigation.

Sorry, comment time is over.