----- Original Message -----
From: Kirsten Stevens
To: Merlin Preuss
Sent: Sunday, September 16, 2007 2:30 PM
Subject: Engine Recovered: TC Docket #AAR2006G097207
Dear Mr. Preuss;
By now I expect you have heard that the families of Arnie Feast, Doug and Trevor Decock, Fabian Bedard and Dave Stevens have been successful in recovering the engine of the accident aircraft C-GAQW (Docket #AAR2006G097207: February 28, 2005). Having delivered the power section and what remains of the blower and accessory section (recovered July 28, 2005) to the TSB office in Richmond on September 13th, 2007, we trust that:
· Transport Canada Civil Aviation representatives of Maintenance and Manufacturing knowledgeable in DHC-2 aircraft, P&W R-985 engines, Hamilton Standard propellers and Edo 4580 floats will be assigned to take part in the investigation;
· Transport Canada Civil Aviation Occupational Health and Safety will finally appoint a Minister’s Observer in respect of the agreement with the Minister of Labour, to ensure that all safety measures were adhered to in compliance with the Canada Labour Code, especially Part II:
o "Duties of Employers: Specific Duties"125 (1)
§ "(c) investigate, record and report in the manner and to the authorities as prescribed all accidents, occupational diseases and other hazardous occurrences known to the employer;"
§ "(k) ensure that the vehicles and mobile equipment used by the employees in the course of their employment meet prescribed standards;"
§ "(o) comply with prescribed standards relating to fire safety and emergency measures;"
· Should it be found that any party’s negligence contributed to this accident and/or the fatal nature of the accident, that such party will be held accountable using both TCCA Enforcement and the involvement of the RCMP further to the Criminal Code of Canada which states
o “everyone who undertakes, or has the authority, to direct how another person does work or performs a task is under a legal duty to take reasonable steps to prevent bodily harm to that person, or any other person, arising from that work or task.”
o Dangerous operation of motor vehicles, vessels and aircraft: 249. (1) Every one commits an offence who operates (c) an aircraft in a manner that is dangerous to the public, having regard to all the circumstances, including the nature and condition of that aircraft or the place or air space in or through which the aircraft is operated;".
In light of the Canada Labour Code and Criminal Code of Canada quoted above, we urge you to consider your own statement that it was “responsibility of the company to decide when the aircraft is missing and take the appropriate action”. The following are known facts:
· My husband Dave Stevens’ body was found and his autopsy completed on March 7th, 2005 indicating that he had drowned with no serious injury and despite wearing a Mustang Survival jacket, after suffering extensively from hypothermia. This was a survivable accident.
· According to the initial report made to the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre, a communications search was initiated at about 11:15 local time (aircraft clock stopped at 10:16), although MJM Air should have been aware the aircraft was missing shortly after 10:30 when it’s destination called to say it had not arrived.
· Said communication search was conducted by telephone only as MJM Air did not have a dispatch radio, contrary to the industry standard for the area.
· Shortly after 12:00 noon, a small scale search was initiated by the Operations Manager when he flew a chartered flight to Johnson Straight and waited for his passengers to finish in the showers before returning sometime after SAR had been contacted at about 14:15.
· Operations Manual 3.4.1 and CARs 723.26 (2) state: "Flight Following for a Type D system is the monitoring of a flight's progress and the notification of appropriate air operator and search-and-rescue authorities if the flight is overdue or missing."
· Canadian Aviation Regulations, Part VII, Standard 723.16, (1)(d) states: “Each aircraft shall be equipped with serviceable and functioning communications equipment that permits the pilot-in-command to communicate with a ground radio station for the purpose of flight following with the air operator. Such a ground station may be operated by the government, the air operator or a private agency.” There was no ground radio station for the purpose of flight following.
· MJM Air Operations Manual Emergency Checklist states that SAR will be contacted within ONE HOUR of an aircraft being identified as overdue (missing).
· A witness heard calls for help three hours after the accident is known to have occurred.
· TP14371 Aeronautical Information Manual, SAR 2.0 Flight Planning, 2.2 Request for Search and Rescue Assistance states: “As soon as information is received that an aircraft is overdue, operators or owners should immediately alert the nearest RCC or any ATS unit, giving all known details. The alerting call should not be delayed until after a small scale private search. Such a delay could deprive those in need of urgent assistance at a time when it is most needed. “
It is clear that MJM Air was not operating in accordance with the Regulations or Standards.
At this time, we further wish to recommend that commercially operated floatplanes (or those being used to transport workers) have a mandatory requirement for an ELT beacon which works underwater; passengers on commercially operated floatplanes (or those being used to transport workers) be required to don their inflatable life jackets prior to boarding, and that such life jackets be equipped with whistles and dye markers/streamers or other means of visually aiding location; equipping said life jackets with Personal Locator Beacons.
We remind you that an Enforcement Action should already be underway further to the Aircraft Inspection Report dated 20 December 2006, and would like to be made aware of the proceedings of this action and if what our rights are with respect to being an “interested party”.
Having recently had the opportunity to review the Maintenance Logs for C-GAQW, we have noted a number of discrepancies with respect to parts and labour which were not noted with the above mentioned inspection report. We trust that with the recovery of the power section, these discrepancies will be duly noted, analyzed and acted upon.
We look forward to your prompt response.
492 South McPhedran Road
Campbell River, BC
CANADA V9W 5K5
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