Last week, a West Wind Aviation ATR-42 aircraft crashed shortly after taking off from the Fond-du-Lac, Sask., airport on Wednesday. All 25 people on board survived. The plane hit the ground at 6:16 p.m. local time. Several people were injured and transported to local hospitals for treatment, according to MetroUK.
The aircraft was en route to Stony Rapids, another small airport in Saskatchewan when it crashed. The cause of the incident is unclear, and Canada’s Transportation Safety Board is investigating.
“At this time the cause of the accident is unknown and the Transportation Safety Board has been advised,” Rick Philipenko, the chief financial officer of Saskatoon-based West Wind Aviation, explained in a news release. “The care of passengers and crew remain the priority.”
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police noted that the plane did not explode or catch fire upon impact.
A spokesman said: “All 22 passengers and three crew members have been accounted for. They have been removed from the scene of the crash with no fatalities reported. A number of people have suffered injuries; some serious enough to require air ambulance services.”
Ralph Goodale, the federal minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, praised the first responders for their actions, tweeting: “First responders are remarkable, on the scene w/ skill+courage to deal w/ emergencies – like plane crash tonight near Fond du Lac.”
Transport Minister Marc Garneau, added (via CBC News): “We will cooperate fully with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada’s investigation into this accident. Transport Canada is appointing a minister’s observer who will keep me informed of the investigation’s progress.”
The community of Fond-du-Lac is located in northern Saskatchewan and is home to about 900 residents.
Timeline of notable plane crashes on Canadian soil:
- 1943: The Royal Canadian Air Force’s Saint-Donat Liberator III hit Black Mountain due to bad weather and mapping issues. It was the worst military aviation accident in the country’s history; 24 people died.
- 1946: The Flagship New England crashed shortly after take-off in Newfoundland. All 39 people on board perished.
- 1950: An Air Force B-36 crashed in British Columbia after dropping a Mark 4 nuclear bomb during a simulated nuclear strike combat mission. The crew abandoned the plane.
- 1950: A U.S. Air Force DC-4 crashed near Snag, Yukon. All 44 aboard were killed.
- 1954: Trans-Canada Airlines Canadair C-4 collided with RCAF Harvard over Moose Jaw, Sask. All 35 aboard and one person on the ground died.
- 1956: Dubbed the “Convent Crash,” “Orleans Air Disaster” and “Villa St. Louis Disaster,” 15 people died when a CF-100 fighter jet hit the Villa St. Louis. Eleven of them were members of the Grey Nuns. The cause was never officially determined.
- 1956: Trans-Canada Air Lines Flight 810 Canadair North Star crashed near Chilliwack, B.C. Sixty-two people on board died.
- 1957: Maritime Central Airways Flight 315 was traveling fron London, England, to Toronto, Ontario, when it crashed near Issoudun, Quebec. All 79 people on board were killed.
- 1963: Trans-Canada Air Lines (TCA) Flight 831 crashed near Montreal. All 111 passengers and seven crew members were killed. The plane was too damaged to determine a cause.
- 1965: Canadian Pacific Airlines Flight 21 DC-6 crashed near 100 Mile House, B.C., and 52 people were killed.
- 1970: Air Canada Flight 621 DC-8 crashed near Toronto, and 109 aboard were killed.
- 1978: Pacific Western Airlines Flight 314 Boeing 737 crashed near Cranbook, B.C., and 38 passengers, and four crew members died.
- 1985: Arrow Air Flight 1285 was carrying U.S. troops from Egypt to Kentucky via West Germany and Gander, Canada. While taking off from Gander, the plane stalled, crashed and burned not far from the runway. All 248 passengers and eight crew members died. As of 2017, the crash was responsible for the highest number of deaths from aviation accidents on Canadian soil. Ice on the wing was likely responsible for the stalling and subsequent crash.
- 1986: Three related crashes occurred in Kananaskis County, Alberta, between June 6-14. A Cessna carrying a wildlife biologist crashed on Mount Kidd. The pilot’s friends then set out to find the plane. All three on board died when another Cessna hit Mount Lougheed. A third plane with eight people on board also crashed during search and rescue efforts.
- 1998: Swissair Flight 111 traveling from New York City, United States, to Geneva, Switzerland, crashed into the Atlantic Ocean in St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia. All 229 passengers and crew members died.
- 2010: While combatting a wildfire over British Columbia, Conair Aviation Flight 448 crashed, and both crew members died. Pilot error was deemed the cause.
- 2015: Cargo plane Carson Airflight 66 crashed into a mountain on the way to Prince George Airport. Both crew members died. Following an investigation, it was determined the pilot had a blood alcohol content of 0.24 percent, much higher than the legal driving limit (0.08 percent)
- 2016: Canadian politician Jean Lapierre, his wife, three siblings, and two pilots died after the plane they were in crashed while approaching Îles-de-la-Madeleine Airport in Quebec. Lapierre was en route to his father’s funeral.