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Transportation Safety Board of Canada investigators look over one of two planes that collided in mid-air in Mission, B.C., on Feb. 10, 2011. (Rafal Gerszak for The Globe and Mail)
Transportation Safety Board of Canada investigators look over one of two planes that collided in mid-air in Mission, B.C., on Feb. 10, 2011. (Rafal Gerszak for The Globe and Mail)

Pilot error in stunt practice led to two deaths, report finds Add to ...

A Transportation Safety Board report says a series of missteps during a formation-flying routine over B.C.’s Fraser Valley led to two deaths in February 2011.

The report says four small planes were practising the high-risk routine, and when the newest member of the team attempted to rejoin the formation he set off a mid-air collision.

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The lead plane broke up in mid-air and crashed into a shallow slough, killing the 61-year-old pilot and his passenger.

The pilot of the second plane regained control and landed in a farmer’s field.

As a result of the crash, Transport Canada has issued a safety bulletin on the hazards of formation flying.

The bulletin stresses pre-flight planning and reminds pilots to ensure they have the skill set to take part in formation flying.

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