Ottawa

2 planes collide in mid-air near Constance Bay

A pilot escaped with only minor injuries Sunday after a mid-air plane crash sent his aircraft plunging into the Ottawa River near Constance Bay.

Pilot in his 70s treated by paramedics for minor injuries

A float plane crashed into the Ottawa River on Sunday, June 14, 2020, after a mid-air collision over Constance Bay in Ottawa's west end. (Supplied by Marc Hallam)

A pilot escaped with only minor injuries Sunday after a mid-air plane crash sent his aircraft plunging into the Ottawa River near Constance Bay.

Multiple 911 calls came in at 2:48 p.m. about the crash in the city's far west end, paramedics said.

Several boats headed to the scene and helped rescue the pilot of the downed plane, who made it to shore, according to Ottawa Fire Services. 

The pilot, who is in his 70s, suffered only scrapes and bruises, according to paramedics.

Firefighters secured the plane's wreckage, which was upside down in the water. As of 4 p.m., Ottawa police, paramedics and fire crews were still on the scene.

A neighbour said he saw the pilot get out of the plane before being helped onto a pontoon boat and taken to shore. (Supplied by Marc Hallam)

Marc Hallam lives near where the crash occurred, and said his son saw a float plane go into a spiral after the collision and then crash nose-first into the river.

Hallam said he saw the plane upside down in the water, adding the pilot managed to get out on his own before being pulled onto a pontoon boat and taken to shore.

4 people on other plane

The second plane was able to land safely at the Arnprior Airport in nearby Arnprior, Ont., west of Ottawa, fire officials said.

The Cessna 172 had three adults and one child on board, according to Dan Lynch, the operations manager at the airport.

The plane landed on runway 34 at 3:30 p.m., but had sustained nose-wheel damage in the crash, he said.

A search-and-rescue team from CFB Trenton was headed to the scene, Lynch said, but was called off after the plane landed without incident.

In a statement to CBC Ottawa, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada said it was aware of the collision and is gathering information.

The board is an independent investigative agency with a mandate to improve air, marine, pipeline and rail safety in Canada.

With files from Radio-Canada's Boris Proulx

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