A Eurocopter AS355, similar to the one shown, caused a forest fire north of Pitt Lake Sunday. (Flickr)

UPDATED: Helicopter crash sparked wildfire north of Pitt Lake

The pilot was flying from Langley to Pitt Lake and lost control on landing

The five hectare forest fire that broke out north of Pitt Lake on Sunday was caused by a helicopter missing its landing.

According to the Transportation Safety Board, one pilot and one passenger were on board the Eurocopter AS355 when it took off from Langley midday Sunday and flew towards Pitt Lake before crashing at about 2:15 p.m.

“The aircraft was landing on a forestry road and as the aircraft was touching down, the pilot lost control,” a spokesperson said.

“The rotor blades contacted the ground and the aircraft rolled onto its side.”

Both the pilot and passenger suffered minor injuries but the helicopter was “substantially damaged.”

The forest fire, which has more than doubled in size since Sunday, is about eight kilometres north of Pitt Lake and near the Upper Pitt river hatchery.

BC Wildfire said that the fire is proving hard to fight, with high winds expected and accessible only by air and water and no structures are at risk.

“It’s basically burning in timber of a steep hillside,” said fire information officer Jeanne Larson.

“But there’s nothing there, no infrastructure.”

Currently, BC Wildfire has dispatched a three-person initial attack crew, two fallers, a 10 person fire suppression crew and two helicopters to the site.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Langley Mounties get new tool to find drunk drivers

New legislation take effect this week that will allow broader breathalyzer testing.

BCIHL Young Stars lose hard-fought hockey game to Kazakhstan at Langley Events Centre

Coach calls it ‘a great opportunity for those guys to have an international experience’

How some Langley students used spare change, bake sales and candy-cane-grams to help the needy

This week, three families will have a better Christmas as a result

Road to the World Juniors leads through Langley

Finland plays Denmark on Wednesday, United States takes on Czech Republic on Saturday

How the Grinch stole a Langley senior’s Christmas

Mary Kydd said her car was broken into at her apartment’s underground parking garage last week.

Story of the Year: Deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The Canadian Press annual survey of newsrooms across the country saw 53 out of 129 editors cast their votes for the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

Trump signs order to create US Space Command

President Donald Trump signs an executive order to create a U.S. Space Command.

Groups preparing new pipeline legal challenge, argue government’s mind made up

A Vancouver-based environment charity is readying itself to go back to court if the federal government reapproves the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Notorious Toronto triple killer gets third consecutive life sentence

Dellen Millard gets third consecutive life sentence for father’s death.

‘Subdued’ housing market predicted in B.C. through 2021: report

The Central 1 Credit Union report predicts “rising but subdued sales” over the next three years, with little movement in median home prices.

A journey through 2018’s top pop culture moments

Was there any pop culture this year? Of course there was.

‘A stronger Alberta:’ Ottawa announces $1.6B for Canada’s oil and gas sector

Price of Alberta oil plummeted so low that Alberta’s Premier said Canada was practically giving it away

Wicked weather, including heavy snow, rainfall, hammers southern B.C.

Environment Canada has posted winter storm warnings for the Coquihalla Highway, Highway 3

Caretaker jailed, must pay back money after stealing $260K from elderly B.C. couple

Antonette Dizon, now 50, had been hired to provide extra care for Henry and Helen Abfalter

Most Read