Yukon RCMP retire 42-year-old Twin Otter

The RCMP's Twin Otter has been sold to make way for a faster more efficient aircraft and its many fond memories with it.
The Yukon RCMP's Twin Otter was sold to a private buyer in March, 2014. Police in Happy Valley-Goose Bay now operate the only RCMP Twin Otter plane in the country. (RCMP)

The RCMP has retired a long standing part of its policing in Yukon.

A Twin Otter aircraft has been replaced with newer plane. But, after 42 years in the territory, the Twin Otter known as "Mike Papa Lima", for its aircraft registration C-FMPL, leaves many memories behind.

“It has carried everything from emergency responders to new babies, from guns to groceries,” says Insp. Ken Foster.

RCMP veterans are reminded of the plane taking them through searches and emergency calls in the worst of conditions. On one flight the plane took a direct lightning hit without much damage and no injuries to its pilot and passengers.

It rolled off a factory production line in Toronto in 1971 and arrived in Yukon a few months later. The RCMP says, since then, it has performed more than 23,000 take-offs and landings accumulating over 31,000 flight hours and covering over 4.75 million nautical miles.

The plane was sold to a southern buyer through a public bidding process.

The RCMP say its replacement, a Pilatus PC-12, flies higher and faster with a greater range, at less cost.