Aviation Investigation A17C0146
Collision with terrain
Update on 7 August 2018
This investigation is in the report phase.
On 13 December 2017, an ATR 42-320 aircraft operated by West Wind Aviation as flight WEW282 departed Fond-du-Lac Airport, Saskatchewan (CZFD) for Stony Rapids, Saskatchewan (CYSF) with 22 passengers and 3 crew on board. At 1812 central standard time, shortly after takeoff, the aircraft collided with trees and terrain less than a mile west of the end of Runway 28. The aircraft was destroyed. Nine occupants were reported to have sustained serious injuries. Sixteen other aircraft occupants were also injured. One of the seriously injured passengers subsequently died. The TSB is investigating.
Families, loved ones, survivors and the community of Fond-du-Lac
The TSB offers its condolences to the family who lost a loved one and we understand that this accident has been traumatic to those involved. The TSB investigation team is mindful of the survivors and the community of Fond-du-Lac, who want answers rapidly. We continue our work to determine how accidents like this one can be prevented in the future.
What we know based on initial examinations
A significant amount of work has been completed so far, but much remains to be done. An investigation team including air investigators from various TSB offices and technical experts from the TSB laboratory in Ottawa were deployed to the accident site. A site survey was completed and the wreckage was transported to an off-site location for further investigation. The examination and analysis phase is in progress.
Sequence of events
Flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder (FDR/CVR)
The next steps of the investigation include the following work:
The Investigator-in-Charge, David Ross, is being assisted in this investigation by TSB investigators with backgrounds in flight operations, engineering, aircraft performance, aircraft systems and engines, and human factors.
The TSB conducts independent investigations. Representatives from Transport Canada, Bureau d'Enquêtes et d'Analyses pour la sécurité de l'aviation civile – BEA (France's accident investigation authority), and ATR (aircraft manufacturer) are providing assistance with this investigation.
We would also like to recognize the contributions of the local Canadian Rangers and of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) who provided assistance at the accident site to the investigation team.
Communication of safety deficiencies
Investigations are complex and we take the time needed to complete a thorough investigation. However, should the investigation team uncover safety deficiencies that present an immediate risk, the Board will communicate them without delay.
It is important not to speculate, or draw conclusions as to causes at this time. There are often many factors that can contribute to an accident.
Map of the area
David Ross has been a TSB operations investigator in the Central Region since 1999.
His background includes three years experience as a weather observer, twenty years military service in the Canadian Forces, and one year as a regional airline pilot in western Canada.
Mr. Ross has extensive worldwide air transport flight operations experience and worked as a training pilot, check pilot, and flight operations supervisor.
Mr. Ross holds a current airline transport pilot licence and he has accumulated 7800 hours flight time.
See more high resolution pictures on the TSB Flickr page.
Transportation Safety Board investigation process
There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation:
- Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
- Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
- Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.
For more information, see our Investigation process page.
TSB provides update on investigation into Fond-du-Lac accident, expands data collection on aircraft operations in remote areas
Read the news release
TSB will provide a news briefing on its investigation into the airplane accident in Fond-du-Lac, Saskatchewan
Read the media advisory
TSB deploys a team of investigators to an aircraft accident near Fond-du-Lac, Saskatchewan
Read the deployment notice
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