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TSB investigators en route to scene of deadly Sask. accident

May 14, 2012, St. Brieux, Sask. - Transportation Safety Board investigators are on their way to the scene of Saturday's midair collision in northern Saskatchewan that killed five people.

May 14, 2012  By The Canadian Press

A Piper PA-28 and a Lake Buccaneer amphibious plane somehow came into contact with each other near St. Brieux, northeast of Saskatoon.

Pieces of two small planes involved lie scattered over more than a kilometre.

One of the planes is submerged in a small body of water, while other parts are littered on grassy fields and amongst trees.

Police say the Piper was on its way from Calgary to the airstrip in St. Brieux with two men and a young male, while the amphibious plane was flying from Regina to La Ronge, Sask. with a man and a woman on board.


Claude Bourgault, whose family operates farm equipment manufacturer Bourgault Industries which is based in St. Brieux, says the Piper was on its way to the company's facilities.

"They were customers on their way to pick up parts,'' Bourgault said.

Bourgault said his bother, company president Gerry Bourgault, was a pilot himself and assisted as police searched the area on Saturday.

Police have not released the names of any of the people who were killed. They say there were no survivors.

Chris Krepski, a spokesman for the Transportation Safety Board, says it's early in the investigation and details about what led the two planes to collide aren't yet available. Investigators were due at the scene Sunday.

RCMP Cpl. Rob King says remains of some of the victims were still at the scene on Sunday, he said. Police have been securing the scene until TSB investigators arrive. It's a difficult job, King says, because the wreckage is scattered over such a large area.

King says RCMP went to the scene Saturday when they got a report that a piece of a wing had been found in a field. At that point, it wasn't known that two planes were involved.

"Naturally, they figured if there's a wing, there's got to be more. And while they were looking around, they received information that a second plane may have been in the area and may be down as well,'' King said, explaining that he believed the information about the second plane came from air traffic controllers in Regina.

"Through some more ground searching they were able to locate the second crash site as well.''

Pauline Boyer, mayor of St. Brieux, says people in the small community are praying for the families of the victims.

"We don't know the names of the people,'' Boyer said Sunday morning. "It's just a very sad event that happened near our community.''

"It's very, very tragic.''


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