An Alaska resident died in a floatplane accident near Destruction Bay Monday evening.
A couple bound for the Lower 48 were on their way to Whitehorse in a Maule M-5 floatplane when they decided to make a stop just after 9 p.m. on Kluane Lake.
The plane landed right-side up, but soon flipped over, said Cpl. David Morin of the Haines Junction RCMP detachment.
The 69-year-old pilot managed to get out of the cockpit, which was held underwater by the floats on the surface. RCMP did not provide his name.
Renda Horn, his 63-year-old wife, didn’t survive the crash.
The man was rescued by people who witnessed the event from land, said Morin.
The floatplane was about 450 metres from the shore at that point, he said.
“We’re still speaking to witnesses and the transportation safety people are coming in today,” said Morin.
The Transportation Safety Board of Canada representatives were initially investigating, but are now providing help and expertise, said spokesperson John Cottreau.
“We aren’t going to investigate any further,” said Cottreau. “We’re going to assist the coroner.”
The board will send one expert to Destruction Bay, he said.
“We’re mandated for selected occurrences to improve transportation safety at some level,” said Cottreau. “It was deemed this was not one of those opportunities.”
Plane insurers often ask the board to help with recovering crashed vehicles, he said, and the board employee will likely help with that too.
The couple’s family has been notified, said Morin.
The RCMP and the Yukon coroner continue to investigate. (James Munson)
Of well waters
and wonky math
A city tendering process that wound up in court over faulty math was officially awarded to Ketza Construction on Monday.
In May, the city issued a tender for the creation of two water wells in south Riverdale. Only two companies bid on the contract, Ketza Construction and TSL Contractors.
An error in Ketza’s GST calculation created uncertainty over which company had submitted the low bid—both asserted theirs was the lowest, said Clive Sparks, acting director of operations for the city.
The case ended up in the Supreme Court of Yukon to determine if the Ketza bid met the bid conditions even with its mathematical error.
“The court has decided that Ketza is the low compliant bid for the construction of the 2009 well no. 8 and 9 project,” said Sparks.
The Supreme Court only recommended the city give the tender to Ketza; it did not legally direct the city to do so.
Ketza Construction was recently embroiled in another tendering dispute over Dawson City’s wastewater treatment facility.
Ketza’s bid was disqualified on technical grounds.
This had no effect on the city taking the issue to court said director of operations, Brian Crist in an earlier interview.
“Both construction companies believed they were the lowest bid, that’s the crux,” said Crist.
“The city wanted to do this in the fairest way possible. It was too close for us to delineate.”
Ketza will begin construction of the water wells that will replace Schwatka Lake as a water source for the city. The project is expected to cost $863,053. (Vivian Belik)