State Of Sandy Bay Airstrip Questioned After Crash

Wednesday, January 10, 2007 at 12:42



The provincial transportation department is rejecting any suggestion that the Sandy Bay airstrip is unsafe.


Investigators haven’t pinpointed the cause of Sunday’s fatal plane crash there.


However, a preliminary investigation indicates the plane flew over the airport and crashed about a mile beyond the runway.


Earlier this week, former Ile-a-la-Crosse mayor Max Morin — who sits on a northern transportation committee — told MBC that the province has been told to extend and improve the Sandy Bay runway since a fatal plane crash there in 1993.


But government spokesperson Kirsten Leatherdale says there’s no evidence northern leaders have been pushing for improvements to the Sandy Bay runway, according to government representatives on that committee.


Leatherdale says her department considers the Sandy Bay airstrip safe since it meets federal regulations, and there are no plans to upgrade it.


She also notes pilot error was deemed to be the main cause of the 1993 crash.