Thunder Bay

TSB releases report of fatal May 2019 float plane crash near Red Lake, Ont.

Following a float plane crash that killed two people near Red Lake, Ont. earlier this year, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada recommends pilots consider their abilities and aircraft capabilities when flying in gusty winds and moderate turbulence.
The single-engine float plane crashed near the shore of Domain Lake in northwestern Ontario in May 2019, killing both people on board. (Supplied/Transportation Safety Board of Canada)

Following a fatal float plane crash that killed two people near Red Lake, Ont. earlier this year, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada recommends pilots consider their abilities and aircraft capabilities when flying in gusty winds and moderate turbulence.

The single-engine Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser crashed on May 28, 2019 as it was transporting passengers between outpost camps at Domain Lake and Optic Lake in northwestern Ontario.

The wreckage of the plane was found the next day, where it collided with the ground near the shore of Domain Lake and sparked a forest fire. The two people on board - a pilot and one passenger, were found dead. The pilot owned the plane, as well as both of the outpost camps, while the passenger was an employee.

According to the TSB investigation report, the pilot had a little more than 100 hours of total flight time but only three hours as pilot-in-command of a float plane.

The report noted that two pilots in Red Lake described the late afternoon conditions as "violently windy," and chose not to fly for the rest of the day. Nav Canada issued an urgent pilot weather report for the Kenora, Sioux Lookout and Red Lake areas about three hours before the plane took off for the final time, but the investigation was unable to determine if the pilot ever heard the broadcast.