TSB says plane that crashed near Edmonton, killing three, caused by stall

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ROLLY VIEW, Alta. — The Transportation Safety Board says an amateur-built float plane stalled while making a turn south of Edmonton last summer before crashing and killing all three people aboard.

A report into the crash says the Murphy Moose four-seat aircraft, which has wheels that extend from its floats, was being used for seaplane training in July and carried a licensed pilot, a trainee and a passenger.

The flight began at Cooking Lake airfield and the aircraft conducted a water landing at nearby Hastings Lake before continuing to the southwest. The pilot attempted another turn during which the plane's speed dropped to 150 km/h from 188 km/h.

"While in the turn, the aircraft stalled and entered a spin with rotation to the left," said the report released Wednesday.

"The aircraft struck terrain in a steep nose-down, left-wing low attitude, in farm pasture near Rolly View, approximately 12 kilometres east of the Edmonton International Airport."

The investigation was unable to determine the aircraft’s bank angle, pitch, and speed when the loss of control occurred. But the safety board did say steep turns increase the risk of an aerodynamic stall, and when they are made close to the ground, the chances of successfully recovering from a stall decrease.

"Accelerated stalls are usually more severe than unaccelerated stalls, and are often unexpected."

The investigation wasn't able to determine which pilot was at the controls at the time of the accident.

The report said weather conditions did not appear to be a factor and the plane had passed tests for airworthiness.

Details of the flight path were captured by a portable global positioning system in the aircraft.

The board recommends additional "vigilance and caution" when manoeuvring close to the ground and when n an aircraft is not equipped with a stall warning device.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 13, 2021

The Canadian Press

Note to readers: This is a corrected story, A previous version had a headline that said the crash was caused by an engine stall.