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Air transportation safety investigation A20P0105

The TSB has completed this investigation. The report was published on 25 June 2021.

Table of contents

Pilot fatally injured during ground operations

Wilderness Seaplanes Ltd.
de Havilland DHC-2 Mk. I, C-FDSG
Port Hardy Water Aerodrome, British Columbia

View final report

The occurrence

On , C-FDSG, a float-equipped de Havilland DHC-2 Beaver aircraft operated by Wilderness Seaplanes, was being prepared to conduct a flight from Port Hardy Water Aerodrome (CAW5), British Columbia to a local logging camp. The pilot went to the dock to prepare the aircraft for the flight and approximately 15 minutes later, was found injured in the water. First aid was administered on site and first responders transported the pilot to the hospital. The pilot died two days later.

Media materials

News release


Investigation report: fatal injury of a pilot during ground operations in Port Hardy, British Columbia, in December 2020
Read the news release

Investigation information

Map showing the location of the occurrence


Photo of Ryan Libech

Ryan Libech joined the TSB’s Air Investigations Branch in 2020 after having spent 18 years in private sector helicopter maintenance and production management, notably working on BK117, Airbus EC120/130, Bell 206/407, and Agusta A109 helicopters, in emergency medical service, private and utility environments. He was also a maintenance lead for international helicopter deployment in the Middle East, and worked periodically as an instructor for professional maintenance training. The majority of his expertise is in aircraft maintenance and operations. Mr. Libech has a diploma in aircraft maintenance engineers technology from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) in Calgary, Alberta.

Class of investigation

This is a class 4 investigation. These investigations are limited in scope, and while the final reports may contain limited analysis, they do not contain findings or recommendations. Class 4 investigations are generally completed within 220 days. For more information, see the Policy on Occurrence Classification.

TSB investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation

  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates air, marine, pipeline, and rail transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.