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AK Beat: Pair of Yukon River boaters found dead near Alakanuk

Alaska Dispatch

Boating accident leaves 2 dead: Two people are dead and one is missing after an apparent boating accident on the Yukon River about 10 miles downriver from Alakanuk on Tuesday. Alaska State Troopers said in a dispatch posted online Tuesday that boaters came upon a body on the riverbank about noon Tuesday, then found another body floating in the river. “Both bodies were wearing life jackets,” the trooper dispatch says. “A search revealed debris from a boat and investigation determined that one other person was unaccounted for.” A St. Mary’s-based trooper will be investigating, and the dead will not be identified publicly until their next of kin is notified, troopers said.

Speaking of bears: It's getting colder around Alaska, and that means that bears are getting ready to enter hibernation. Employees at Katmai National Park and Preserve on the Alaska Peninsula in the southwest region of the state posted a video to their Flickr page Tuesday showing a hefty brown bear making its way through Brooks Camp, a hotspot for bear viewing at the park. As bears' traditional sources of food dry up as the state moves toward winter, they're more prone to make their way into new areas in search of sustenance. 

That's one way to do it: Sure, Alaskans might debate whether guns or pepper spray are more effective in deterring a bear attack, but a woman hiking in New York may have thrown knives into the debate after she reportedly stabbed a black bear. The Associated Press reported that a woman hiking on a trail in New York state last week grew nervous when she saw she was being followed by three bears, and told officials that she stabbed one with an unspecified type of knife when it got too close. The woman reportedly wasn't harmed and the bear ran off. Park rangers were posting notices about the apparently aggressive bears.

Chase ends badly for suspect in Wasilla: Alaska State Troopers report that a high-speed pursuit through Wasilla -- which at times saw speeds of up to 95 mph -- ended late Monday with the suspect vehicle flipping into a ditch on the side of the road and troopers pulling the unconscious driver out "due to the vehicle potentially catching on fire." Troopers said in a dispatch that a traffic stop was attempted on a blue Dodge pickup truck shortly before 11 p.m. Monday when the truck took off down Bogard Road in the Mat-Su Valley, leading troopers on a chase before losing control and rolling several times. Troopers pulled 36-year-old Wasilla resident Jeremiah Coley from the vehicle, who was then flown to Anchorage for treatment. Troopers said alcohol appeared to be a factor in the case.

Pew makes suggestions on Arctic drilling: Vessels that can sustain crushing blows from icebergs, stashes of emergency equipment, a 100-day drilling season, spill control equipment and real-world Arctic tests should be required of oil companies that want to explore for petroleum offshore in U.S. Arctic waters, according to a new report from Pew Charitable Trusts. The 142-page document outlines roughly 80 recommendations the non-profit public policy organization thinks the Interior Department should consider when drafting its formal proposal of minimum standards for oil and gas activity in U.S. Arctic waters. Critics of the current regulations say they are designed for the more forgiving temperate waters in the Gulf of Mexico and that the government should distinguish between the two regions.