Plane Set to Land on Frozen Lake Didn't Quite Make It

10 rescued in rough conditions after small Air Tindi plane crashes in Canada's Northwest Territories
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 29, 2023 9:38 AM CST
10 Rescued After Plane Crash at Remote Canadian Site
Stock photo of a section of Canada's Northwest Territories.   (Getty Images/AStarphotographer)

Passengers on a small plane that crashed in Canada this week are fortunate to be alive after a rescue at a remote site in the Northwest Territories. Today in BC reports that the Air Tindi aircraft, a De Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otter, went down shortly before 1pm local time on Wednesday, about 185 miles northeast of the capital city of Yellowknife, with two pilots and eight passengers on board. David Lavallee, a rep for 1 Canadian Air Division and Canadian Norad Region Headquarters, tells the Canadian Press that all 10 survivors were picked up Thursday from the crash site not far from the Diavik Diamond Mine. Six people were said to have minor injuries, while two were starting to improve after suffering moderate to serious injuries.

A Royal Canadian Air Force CC-130H Hercules was first dispatched from Winnipeg on Wednesday evening amid subzero temperatures and strong winds, with three highly trained search and rescue responders parachuting down to the crash site with supplies and gear, reports the Lethbridge Herald. Air Tindi President Chris Reynolds tells the Canadian Press the "challenging conditions" kept a complete rescue at bay until Thursday, when three helicopters were finally able to set down at dawn and rescue the stranded crew and passengers.

Reynolds says that the private charter crashed right before it was due to land. "It appears to have had an accident right beside its intended destination, which was a frozen lake," he says. "We got a message on our satellite tracking that there was an emergency that the pilots would have activated." Reynolds praises the first responders, including the search and rescue techs who sent out updates every two hours overnight. "Impressed and really thankful for the work they do," he says, per Today in BC. Canada's Transportation Safety Board will work with Air Tindi in an ongoing investigation of the crash. (More plane crash stories.)

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