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Alaska Airlines back on track after canceling Dillingham flights due to broken de-icing equipment

An Alaska Airline employee pushes a dog crate toward the jet on the Dillingham runway. Dec. 28, 2022.
Izzy Ross
An Alaska Airlines employee pushes a dog crate toward the jet on the Dillingham runway. Dec. 28, 2022.

Alaska Airlines’ Dillingham route is back on track after it canceled flights on Monday and Tuesday due to broken de-icing equipment.

Clarks Point school principal Angelia Kelly was one of the people waiting for a flight out of Dillingham.

“It all started really when my dad passed away on Christmas day in Colorado, and I just needed to get home to my family,” she said.

When the Dillingham flight to Anchorage was canceled, Kelly decided to organize a charter. But it wasn’t easy.

“Dena’ina Air didn’t have any charters available. Ravn didn't have any charters available," she said. "I called Lake Clark Air and they didn't have any, and a couple others just didn't have any. And I finally found Alaska Air Transit. And they said they could do one, but it was really expensive.”

The charter cost $6,500. So Kelly worked for about five hours to organize a flight. She posted on the community Facebook page and called other people she knew who were trying to get out. She found nine people to fly to Anchorage, and six others to fly to Dillingham, which brought the ticket prices to $433. And she made it to Colorado.

“I was glad to get here this morning," she said. "It was a long day and a lot of travel. But it was nice to finally get here.”

An Alaska Air spokesperson said via email that the airline can’t safely fly its planes without de-icing equipment. A technician is working on repairs today. The spokesperson also said today’s flight was delayed but still left Dillingham around 1:30 p.m.

The travel chaos that has swept the nation over the past week just brushed Bristol Bay. Alaska Air canceled its flight to Dillingham on Friday because it couldn’t get its crew from Seattle to Anchorage due to the weather.

Get in touch with the author at or 907-842-2200.

Izzy Ross is the news director at KDLG, the NPR member station in Dillingham. She reports, edits, and hosts stories from around the Bristol Bay region, and collaborates with other radio stations across the state.