When a forest fire in the area of Tadoule Lake (Lac Brochet, Manitoba, Canada) threatened an outpost two float-equipped aircraft were chartered to fly out people and equipment. a (1960 built) DeHavilland Canada DHC-3 Otter and a Cessna 185.
The incident aircraft in better days (© Bill Jackson)
The DHC-3 payload consisted of;
2 passengers (the outpost owner and his son)
two 45 gallon drums of fuel
one propane cylinder
one battery charger
several personal items
After loading the aircraft, its weight was close to its maximum gross weight. With the doors closed the Pratt & Whitney R1340 radial engine was started and after the necessary checks were completed, take-off was initiated at ~17.00 local time, in a westerly direction into light winds, estimated to be 5 to 8 knots. OAT (Outside Air Temperature was 27 ºC. The take-off run on Stevens-Nicklin Lake (Manitoba, Canada) was uneventful, until the aircraft reached a height of approximately 80 feet AGL (Above Ground Level), the climb stopped and the aircraft started to descend. The pilot applied full power but was unable to arrest the descent and the aircraft impacted trees with a low forward speed, in a near wings level attitude. After the aircraft came to a stop in the trees a fire broke out. The pilot and the passengers evacuated the aircraft and only sustained minor scrapes and bruises. The pilot of the Cessna 185 had witnessed the accident while airborne. H immediately landed and rendered assistance to the occupants of the DHC-3. The aircraft was destroyed by impact forces and post-impact fire.
The Transportation Safety Board of Canada reported that the aircraft had a headwind in proximity to the forest fire on takeoff and that it flew into the area of a tailwind during the initial climb.
** Editorial note **
V2 Aviation - Training & Maintenance based this blog on a CADORS (Civil Aviation Daily Occurrence Reporting System - Canada) report. These reports contain preliminary, unconfirmed data which can be subject to change. Should there be an inconsistency in the blog don't hesitate to get in touch with us. There are two possibilities to do that, via the comments function at the bottom of this page or via the contact page of the website.
The CADORS report (CADORS Number:2000C0730) related to this blog can be found by clicking here.