The two planes carried a total of 14 passengers from the Royal Princess ship when the collision occurred Monday near Ketchikan, a popular tourist spot on southern Alaskan cruise routes surrounded by fjords and dense forests.
Randy Jason Sullivan, 46, was piloting the de Havilland DHC-2 Beaver owned by Mountain Air Service that collided with a larger de Havilland Otter DHC-3 on Monday afternoon in Ketchikan, Alaska.
Fourteen of the people involved in the collision - everyone except the two pilots - came off the Royal Princess, a megaship on an inaugural Alaska cruise and making a seven-day cruise.
Four people have been confirmed dead by the Coast Guard in the crash, and authorities are still searching for two more missing people.
The Beaver appeared to have crashed on a steep rocky shoreline, partially submerged upside down in seawater, volunteer rescuer Chris John told the Anchorage Daily News.
Floatplanes are aircrafts with pontoons or floats that allow them to land on water.
"All of us at Princess Cruises are deeply saddened by this tragic news", spokesman Brian O'Connor said.
The pilot and nine passengers on the Otter were able to make their way to shore, where they were rescued and taken to hospital, Kahle said. The plane had descended to an altitude of 3,200 to 3,300 feet when it collided with the single-engine de Havilland DHC-2 Beaver, as both headed to Ketchikan.
All of the passengers on the two planes were a part of a shore excursion sold through Princess Cruises. Overnight, the Coast Guard reported recovering the last person from the Taquan aircraft and was taking action to notify the family.
The Taquan Air plane was returning from a Misty Fjords tour, according to Princess, and the second plane was carrying four people from the ship on an independent tour when they collided about 1 p.m. Monday. In Ketchikan Medical Center, three are in good condition and three have been discharged. Four patients with broken bones were later transferred to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, spokeswoman Susan Gregg said.
"We are devastated by today's incident and our hearts go out to our passengers and their families", it said in a statement.
The Australian is among the confirmed dead.
"Taquan Air has suspended all scheduled flights and is cooperating fully with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and other authorities to examine every aspect of this event", the company's statement said.
USA transport authorities are set to investigate the cause of the crash.
Weather conditions in the area on Monday included high overcast skies with 9 miles per hour (14 kph) southeast winds.
A passenger on the cruise told the Associated Press the ship is not leaving as scheduled and there weren't any details as to how the accident will affect the rest of the trip.