The pilot at the controls of a float plane that flew under the Macdonald-Cartier Bridge last month remains a mystery.
Transport Canada said in a statement released Tuesday that it conducted a “comprehensive” investigation into the Aug. 2 incident by reviewing video footage, interviewing witnesses and analyzing radar data but was unable to identify the float plane involved.
Lana Burpee, president of the Ottawa Rowing Club, was standing on the dock on the Ottawa River when she saw the small float plane rising out on the water.
Burpee said she thought the pilot was suicidal and wanted to crash into the side of the bridge.
Burpee told the Citizen in August the pilot was “a heartbeat away; it could have been the worst-case scenario.”
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A group of rowers on the water look on, and some can be heard screaming and yelling as the plane flies under the bridge that connects Ottawa and Gatineau, Que.
Burpee said it was unusual to see a plane on the Ottawa River, especially around the downtown core, but what happened next made her gasp. The plane picked up speed and lifted off.
“Honestly, I thought he was suicidal. I thought he was going to try to smash into the side of the bridge, but fortunately the pilot was able to get through that ascent safely,” she said.
She said the pilot was “a heartbeat away it could have been the worst-case scenario.”
Her husband managed to capture a roughly one-minute video of the plane just as it was taking off.
Burpee said she thought was the pilot was being “completely reckless” and that flying under the bridge was an unnecessary stunt.
She described the incident, which happened over the span of roughly five minutes as “crazy, reckless and endangering”, since there were at least a dozen small boats on the water at the time.
When the plane cleared the bridge, her thought was “we’re spared what could have been something pretty ugly” followed by disbelief “because you go who would do this, it’s crazy, completely crazy.”
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The pilot of a float plane flying over the Ottawa River left some members of the Ottawa Rowing Club in shock.
A video uploaded to YouTube shows the plane taking off from the Ottawa River and flying below the MacDonald Cartier Bridge.
Karin Germann tells CTV that it's normal to see float planes in the area but she's never seen a stunt like that.
"When it took off I think most of us were just kind of thinking this guy is either crazy, we weren't sure if it was illegal what he was doing," she explained. "It certainly didn't seem like a safe thing to do"
She said there was concern for the amount of boats out on the river when the plane took off.
The proper authorities have been contacted about the incident.
- Source: http://www.cfra.com