Canada — A water bomber crash in B.C. has killed a 36-year-old Edmonton man, according to his employer.
Mounties were withholding the victim’s name.
A statement released by the RCMP on Sunday says the water-bombing plane crashed in the Jackass Mountain region in southwestern B.C. around 6:30 p.m. Saturday. RCMP and paramedics were unable to approach the crash site due to the fire caused by the crash.
The Edmonton man was a recently hired co-pilot to a 58-year-old flyer with more than 20 years of aerial firefighting experience, said Rick Pedersen, senior vice-president of plane owner Conair, based out of Abbotsford, B.C.
“We’ve been very communicative with the families, expressing our condolences,” he said. The company is offering counselling services.
“Our thoughts are with the affected families, it is difficult to truly express the deep sense of appreciation that all of us here in B.C. have for those who dedicate their lives to the preservation of our well-being, fire season after fire season,” Cpl. Dan Moskaluk said in the police statement.
Hundreds of forest fires have been ravaging the interior of B.C. in the past week with up to 1,000 firefighters battling the blazes.
Last Thursday a helicopter dumping buckets of water on the fires crashed but the pilot and co-pilot survived.
The Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash, said Pedersen.