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TSB report on fatal collision of Comanche with terrain near Wawa

December 13, 2022  By Wings Staff

Map showing the planned route, the actual flight track, and the accident site, with an inset showing the aircraft’s heading changes and last known position. (Source of main image and inset: Google Earth, with TSB annotations)

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada on November 30 released its investigation report (A22O0046) into the April 14, 2022, fatal collision with terrain involving a Piper PA24-250 aircraft near Wawa, Ontario.

The privately registered Piper PA24-250 Comanche (registration C-GEWK) was conducting a Visual Flight Rules (VFR) flight in Ontario from Delhi Aerodrome (CDH6) to Marathon Aerodrome (CYSP), with the pilot and one passenger on board.

About one hour after take-off, when the aircraft was in the vicinity of Wiarton, Ontario, TSB explains a video of onboard instrumentation shows the aircraft was at an altitude of 4,900 feet and that there were dense clouds to the west of its track. The aircraft changed its heading slightly towards the west, explains TSB, in the direction of CYSP, just before flying over Manitoulin Island.

ADS-B data obtained after the occurrence, shows that the aircraft was flying toward CYSP was starting to show more frequent heading changes. ADS-B position information was lost at approximately 18:03 pm, reports the TSB, at which time the aircraft was approximately 14 nautical miles (NM) south of Wawa Aerodrome (CYXZ), Ontario, and the weather was deteriorating to instrument meteorological conditions.


On May 21, 2022, TSB explains a helicopter operator involved in a private search identified what looked like aircraft parts in an open swampy area. The parts were identified by the OPP as those belonging to the occurrence aircraft, reports the TSB, which established the crash site around six NM northwest of the aircraft’s last known position. The two occupants were fatally injured and the aircraft was destroyed.


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