Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

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Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by Jastapilot » Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:08 pm

Water bomber battling B.C. forest fire crashes into Okanagan Lake
1 hour, 6 minutes ago
By The Canadian Press

KELOWNA, B.C. - A water bomber battling the Terrace Mountain fire near Kelowna, B.C., has crashed into Okanagan Lake.

Transportation Safety Board spokesman Bill Yearwood says the pilot is expected to survive. Yearwood says he doesn't know what caused the crash. Just over half the 2,200 people forced from their homes after the fire flared up have been allowed to return home.

But they are still on evacuation alert.

The fire that now covered 45 square kilometres is only 25 per cent contained.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by SeptRepair » Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:09 pm

CTV British Columbia

An AT-802F Air Boss watertaker crashed into Okanagan Lake near Kelowna, B.C. on Saturday. (Conair website). July 25th, 2009.
Airtanker crashes into B.C. lake near Kelowna
Updated: Sat Jul. 25 2009 14:13:47

ctvbc.ca

An airtanker plane engaged in fighting forest fires in West Kelowna, B.C., crashed into Okanagan Lake on Saturday, CTV News has confirmed. The pilot was able to escape unhurt.

Rick Pedersen, a spokesman for Conair, said the plane flipped over at around noon while attempting to scoop up water from the lake. But Pedersen said he doesn't know what caused this to happen.

The AT802 Fire Boss plunged into about 110 metres of water, prompting officials from the Canadian Aviation Safety Board to launch an investigation.

The Fire Boss loads water at the rate of 40 gallons per second at over 60 miles per hour, according to the Conair website.

Powered by a turbine engine, it takes off and lands on the water, at remote strips or at small airports, and offers low vibration and excellent pilot visibility, Conair said.

For updates on this story, check CTV News at 6:00 p.m. and 11:30 p.m.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by sky's the limit » Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:49 pm

Oh shit....

I'm very sorry to hear about this.

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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by fogghorn » Sat Jul 25, 2009 4:11 pm

Glad to hear no one got hurt, never heard of a fireboss..
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by W5 » Sat Jul 25, 2009 4:19 pm

Fireboss is Conair's version of the firefighting Air Tractor:



A water bomber battling the Terrace Mountain wildfire in central B.C. crashed in Okanagan Lake Saturday afternoon.


Rick Pedersen, vice president with Conair Group, the company that operates the aircraft, said the Air Tractor AT802F Amphibious “Fire Boss” aircraft was involved in a “scooping accident” when it was taking water out of the lake at about noon local time.


“During scooping operation, the aircraft flipped over,” Pedersen told Canwest News Service.


The lone person on board, a male pilot, was able to escape out of the aircraft, Pedersen said. There were no reported injuries and he was taken to hospital for observation.


“As always in these kind of accidents or incidents, we’re extremely relieved that the pilot is OK,” Pedersen said.


Abbotsford, B.C.-based Conair Group Inc. has more than 60 aircraft specializing in aerial firefighting mainly within B.C., Alberta, Yukon and Alaska, he said.


There were seven fixed-wing aircraft involved in fighting the Terrace Mountain fire before the accident occurred. The group of aircraft were contracted to the Province of Alberta at the time of the accident, and lent to British Columbia to assist fire crews battle the wildfire, about 30 kilometres northwest of Kelowna. The blaze is 4,500 hectares in size and is about 25 per cent contained.


Bill Yearwood, an aviation investigator with the Transportation Safety Board in Vancouver, said a “limited investigation” involving mostly data gathering will take place. “I’m expecting that a conversation with the pilot later (Saturday) will shed most of the information we need,” he said.


The air tractor is an aircraft that was initially designed for crop dusting, but was converted to landing on both land and water, Yearwood said.


There are pontoons on the bottom of this amphibious aircraft, similar to a float plant, and has a mechanism to scoop water into the pontoons for fire suppression.


“On touchdown to scoop water, the aircraft upset and it sank,” Yearwood said of the accident.


Pedersen said in the company’s 40-year history, this type of aircraft has never been involved in an accident. “We’ve been in this business for a long time and we have well-experienced aircrew and support to provide (aerial firefighting) services.”

© Copyright (c) Canwest News Service
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by North Shore » Sat Jul 25, 2009 4:26 pm

Oh, sh!t. Really glad to hear that the pilot is safe.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by Eleveniron » Sat Jul 25, 2009 5:03 pm

Does anyone know who the pilot is? Are initials DS?
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by W5 » Sat Jul 25, 2009 5:08 pm

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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by canwhitewolf » Sat Jul 25, 2009 5:50 pm

pics
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by nimbostratus » Sat Jul 25, 2009 5:54 pm

I really really hope this wasn't a gear issue.

Hey! Doesn't Doc fly a fireboss? :?


(Glad the pilot is OK).
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by husky » Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:12 pm

There is a video of the crash. Five words: "Gear up for water landing",,,,
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by nimbostratus » Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:14 pm

Crap.

3.....2.....1.......
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by North Shore » Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:30 pm

There is a video of the crash.
Where? Link, please...
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by iflyforpie » Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:41 pm

Pedersen said in the company’s 40-year history, this type of aircraft has never been involved in an accident. “We’ve been in this business for a long time and we have well-experienced aircrew and support to provide (aerial firefighting) services.”
I guess this one doesn't qualify as an 'accident'.

viewtopic.php?f=54&t=54847&hilit=+conair

Glad to hear--like the last one--that the pilot is okay.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by husky » Sat Jul 25, 2009 7:11 pm

The video was on the global news...I'm sure it will be up on Youtube soon enough.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by North Shore » Sat Jul 25, 2009 7:23 pm

Pedersen said in the company’s 40-year history, this type of aircraft has never been involved in an accident.
That's a little disingenuous, as it seems, to me, to imply that Conair has been operating FireBosses for 40 years - which is not true. That being said, I think that Conair has an excellent safety/maintenance record...
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by Easy Flyer » Sat Jul 25, 2009 7:47 pm

Terrible news. Glad the pilot is ok. Tractor is built tough.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by snoopy » Sat Jul 25, 2009 8:12 pm

"There is a video of the crash. Five words: "Gear up for water landing",,,,"

Husky, are you saying this is another landing gear accident?

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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by North Shore » Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:04 am

Difficult to tell from the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=669_Mu_zBAE
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by snoopy » Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:40 am

Huh. You're right - it is hard to tell for sure.

The water looks pretty glassy though, which could have been a factor, and it sure does look as though the nose gears are down more than the fully retracted position: http://www.wipaire.com/wipline/10000.php

http://www.firebossllc.com/specs.cfm
(darn hyperlinks! - fixed)

Kirsten B.
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Last edited by snoopy on Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:52 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by iflyforpie » Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:45 am

I can definitely see the nose gears out.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by xsbank » Sun Jul 26, 2009 8:43 am

I vote gear down. Looks like its out at one point there - not that glassy.
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by snoopy » Sun Jul 26, 2009 8:56 am

Not from the photos, but from the video - about 47 seconds and onwards, you can see the aircraft reflection/shadow on the water. Again, hard to say for sure. The video is pretty blurry even in high res.

Cheers,
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by loopa » Sun Jul 26, 2009 9:58 am

How come he doesn't get the credit Captain Sully got? He safely ditched a plane too. :rolleyes:
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Re: Water Bomber Crash in Kelowna

Post by SeptRepair » Sun Jul 26, 2009 12:11 pm

Well where are the comments like "moron"and "stupid"? Of course that is if it was a gear down water landing.
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