Ontario couple OK after small plane crashes in Nova Scotia's Lunenburg County
Pilot says plane 'just kind of lost lift and started to sink' near Italy Cross
A couple from Dryden, Ont., had a close call Wednesday afternoon when their small float plane crashed into trees on Nova Scotia's South Shore.
Darcy Oliphant, 50, and his wife had just taken off from Branch Lake when the plane lost lift and crashed in a densely forested area near Italy Cross, about 15 kilometres southwest of Bridgewater.
"As I come around this ridge here, I just kind of lost lift and started to sink," Oliphant said hours after the crash, standing near the wreckage and nursing a deep gash on his lip.
He said his wife was not injured.
Oliphant has been a pilot for 18 years.
"I've flown in challenging conditions before," he said. "Not like this.
"The winds over the hill, apparently it gets very calm there and you can lose lift because you've got a dead spot from over the hill."
The couple had been visiting friends in the area and were on their way back home when the crash occurred.
The plane ended up about a kilometre into the woods, so the crash site was not visible from the road.
Difficult to access site
The Italy Cross, Middlewood and District Fire Department had a section of Somerset Road blocked off for several hours after the call came in around 12:30 p.m.
Volunteer firefighter Devon Cleversey said crews had planned to use all-terrain vehicles to access the area but decided to cut a path with a tractor because of the thick brush.
RCMP Cpl. Dal Hutchinson said the Transportation Safety Board has been contacted about the crash.
With files from Elizabeth McMillan and Paul Poirier