David Kumah, an engineer aboard the Alaska fishing vessel Northern Eagle, has tragically died of suspected ammonia exposure. David was found unresponsive late Thursday and died en route to shore. Details of the accident are not currently available and the incident is under investigation by the Coast Guard, NOAA, and Alaska State Troopers.
Once David was found unconscious it took nearly 24 hours for the vessel to reach shore in Dutch Harbor. Unfortunately, given the Northern Eagle’s position, medical evacuation by helicopter was not an option.
The nearly 350-foot fishing vessel is owned by American Seafoods and is one of the largest fishing vessels in the fleet. American Seafoods is a fishing company based out of Seattle, Washington that operates several large trawl fishing vessels. Most of the vessels fish in the Bering Sea out of Dutch Harbor, Alaska.
Working in Alaska fishing remains one of the most dangerous jobs in the world both in terms of injuries and fatal accidents.