On July 24th, 424 Squadron (CFB Trenton) and CASARA Ottawa assisted a pilot whose plane crashed north of Petawawa, ON. A masterfully executed forced landing, a Mayday call, an ELT 406 and a SPOT resulted in this pilot getting away with minor injuries. Everything was in place to allow a search and rescue operation that went very well, thanks to a whole team: Air Canada flight 139, ACC Toronto, ACC Montreal, CASARA Ottawa, Sûreté du Québec, International Emergency Response Coordination Center (IERCC), Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Canadian Mission Control Center (CMCC), Joint Rescue Operations Coordination Center (JRCC) Trenton and 424 Squadron (one C-130 Hercules and one Griffon helicopter).
For a stream of events, as reported by JRCC Trenton, click HERE :
It is remarkable to note that thanks to the beacon 406, barely 10 minutes after the Mayday call, the JRCC had in hand the position of the aircraft and the name of the identifier. From that moment on, the whole search and rescue machine was set in motion. The signal from the SPOT beacon confirmed this some 30 minutes later. This information has become complementary to that provided by the 406 tag.
CASARA Ottawa also played an important role. With the information provided by JRCC Trenton, the crash site was quickly located and confirmed. The CASARA aircraft remained in the area, providing information to JRCC, Hercules and Griffon.
There are certainly a few lessons to be learned from what happened on July 24th:
1. Know and master an emergency condition like the one this pilot experienced.
- The priority is to fly the plane
- Do not move away from the crash site
2. Submit a flight plan.
3. Have a working and registered ELT 406. A reminder that the installation of an ELT 406 will become mandatory in November 2025 for private aircraft - certain exceptions will prevail. For more information, click HERE .
4. You too could contribute to this search and rescue team which is working to save pilots by joining SERABEC .
Aviateurs.Québec would like to congratulate the pilot for her exceptional <airmanship> and all those involved in this search and rescue mission for their professionalism.
Contribution: Rémi Girard, member of the CA Aviateurs.Québec, Provincial training officer, research coordinator and SERABEC operations manager.
Photos: Canadian Forces