Recovery of military helicopter involved in crash underway, ‘small amount of fluids’ in water

By Sarah Crookall

With help from contractors and a crane, the Canadian Armed Forces began the recovery process of the CH-147-F Chinook helicopter, which has remained in the Ottawa River since a tragic crash left two airmen dead and two injured near Garrison Petawawa on Tuesday, June 20.

The aircraft will be raised to the water’s surface with support from barges, towed to shore, then removed by truck. Once recovered, the helicopter will be assessed as part of an ongoing investigation by the Royal Canadian Air Force’s Directorate of Flight Safety.

“Residents can expect to see activity on the river and on the shore as our team with the contractors employ barges and a crane to raise the aircraft and then move it to shore as a part of that process of recovering that aircraft from the river,” David Lavallee, public affairs officer with the Canadian Armed Forces, told CityNews.

According to a public service announcement, small amounts of fluid “released from the helicopter have been noted in the water within the containment area and have been removed.” A contractor has been monitoring contamination through water sampling of the crash site.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Lavallee said sampling hasn’t found any contamination along the riverbank or beach.

“We have some specialized equipment on site, on the river, to contain any fluids like lubricants, or fuel, or any contaminant that may leave the aircraft into the water to prevent that contamination from getting into the wider environment. There has been some evidence of some small amount of fluids that have come out of the helicopter, but it’s all been contained by this specialized equipment.”

The beach near Garrison Petawawa will continue to be monitored for contamination.

While beaches remain open, passersby are advised to stay away from the recovery site for safety and investigative measures.



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