A Canadian waterbombing plane battling wildfires deep in British Columbia's interior crashed on Saturday, search and rescue officials said.
A Canadian waterbombing plane battling wildfires deep in British Columbia’s interior crashed on Saturday, search and rescue officials said.
Capt. Marguerite Dodds-Lepinski, the public affairs officer at the province’s Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Victoria, said it was believed that the plane had two crew members on board. Their fate is currently unknown.
Dodds-Lepinski said two search-and-rescue aircraft from Vancouver Island are on the way to the crash site about 160 miles (260 kilometers) northeast of Vancouver and about 11 miles (18 kilometers) south of the town of Lytton.
The plane was chartered by the provincial government from Conair in Abbotsford, British Columbia.
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Conair spokesman Rick Pedersen said that investigators from the Transportation Safety Board of Canada would soon be headed to the site.
Pedersen, however, said he could not, at this time, release any information concerning the type of aircraft involved, or its crew.
As of Saturday, 318 forest fires were burning across British Columbia, with the largest covering 10 square miles (25 square kilometers).
Air tankers hired by the provincial Ministry of Forests, along with helicopters and heavy machinery are supporting at least 1,000 firefighters on the ground.