Two Winnipeg men killed in Manitou plane crash 0
The site of a small plane crash near Manitou, Manitoba southwest of Winnipeg August 22, 2012 as investigators arrived at the scene the next morning. The crash killed the pilot and passenger when it went down on this ridge near a marshy area about a kilometre north of Manitou. Lorne Stelmach; Morden Times, Morden Manitoba
Witnesses tried in vain to pull a crash victim out of a small plane that plunged into a lagoon in southern Manitoba.
A 64-year-old pilot and his lone passenger, 48, died after a two-seat plane, a Red Acro II, crashed Wednesday evening in the lagoon near the Manitou Airport.
Mounties have not released the names of the victims, but a report identified the victims as pilot Gilbert Bourrier and passenger Tony Butt.
The aircraft took off from Lyncrest Airport, a small grass airstrip less than a kilometre north of the Trans-Canada Highway on Murdock Road, and flew to Manitou, which has a small, grass runway.
The crash happened shortly after the plane took off from the tiny airport.
"It looked as though he maybe started a roll, turned towards the airport, and then into the lagoon," said Russ Langseth, a Manitou resident who witnessed the crash.
Peter Hildebrand, a Winnipeg-based manager at the Transportation Safety Board, said one of the two occupants was thrown from the plane during the crash while passersby quickly worked to free the other from the badly-damaged aircraft.
Both men died at the scene.
"It would've been a very severe impact, so any rescue efforts likely wouldn't have been successful," Hildebrand said.
Two investigators were dispatched Thursday to the scene in an effort to piece together what happened and a possible cause.
"We have some idea as to a chain of events, but why is a different story," Hildebrand said.
RCMP officers were also investigating.
"Right now we are working to get as many answers as we can," said Sgt. Line Karpish.
The Red Acro II is described as a "aerobatic sports-plane" and, in this case, was amateur-built, not from a factory. It was registered in 2006, according to the TSB.
The president of the Springfield Flying Club, which operates the Lyncrest Airport, declined comment, noting it was a difficult time for members.