Small plane that crashed carried crew contracted by BC Wildfire Service

Three men were killed in Saturday's crash. A fourth man is in hospital in stable condition

Three men who died when a small plane crashed northeast of Smithers on Saturday were part of a crew contracted by the BC Wildfire Service to do aerial imaging.

Kevin Skrepnek, B.C.'s chief fire information officer, said in a statement that the department's thoughts and sympathies go to the families and friends of those involved.

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RCMP Sgt. Darren Durnin said that the crash site was located by helicopter search crews in Babine River Corridor Provincial Park, about 100 kilometres northeast of Smithers.

“A conscious male passenger was seen outside the crash site, but due to the landscape, the helicopter was unable to land,'' Durnin said, noting rescuers were lowered from the chopper farther away and hiked to the crash site.

Three other men — the pilot and two passengers — on the Cessna 182 did not survive the crash.

The survivor was rescued by helicopter using a long line, then transported to medical care. As of Monday afternoon, he was reported to be in stable condition.

The bodies of the other three men have been recovered.

Both the BC Coroners Service and the Transportation Safety Board are investigating the crash, which occurred just after 8:30 a.m.

A safety board spokeswoman said it sent a team of investigators into the site on the weekend.

Forests Minister Doug Donaldson said the four contractors who were conducting infrared scans of some of the 2018 wildfires, on behalf of the BC Wildfire Service.

"Our thoughts are with the family and friends of everyone involved in this incident,” Donaldson said. “On behalf of all British Columbians, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the three people who did not survive.”

© Kamloops This Week


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