A Canadian aerobatics jet has crashed into a British Columbia neighbourhood during a flyover intended to boost morale during the Covid-19 pandemic, killing one crew member, seriously injuring another and setting a house on fire.
Video appeared to show the crew of the Snowbirds’ plane ejecting during the crash on Sunday.
Debris was scattered across Kamloops, the neighbourhood near the airport 260 miles north-east of Vancouver. The Snowbirds are Canada’s equivalent of the US Air Force Thunderbirds or the UK’s Red Arrows.
The Royal Canadian Air Force said in a tweet: “It is with heavy hearts that we announce that one member of the CF Snowbirds team has died, and one has sustained serious injuries.” The air force said the surviving member did not have life-threatening injuries.
The Snowbirds began Operation Inspiration in Nova Scotia three weeks ago and features the team’s signature nine-jet formation. It was aimed at boosting morale amid the pandemic.
Video posted to Twitter in Kamloops appears to show two Snowbirds taking off from Kamloops airport. One of the aircraft subsequently climbed into the sky before rolling over and plunging to the ground. The video appears to show at least one person ejecting from the plane before it disappears behind a stand of trees and an explosion is heard. About five houses had to be evacuated.