The Canadian Forces Demonstration Squadron Snowbirds will resume flying operations after the Commander of 2 Canadian Air Division, Brigadier-General Denis O’Reilly lifted the operational pause on the CT-114 Tutor fleet.
The operational pause was implemented following a Snowbirds CT-114 Tutor accident in Kamloops, B.C. on May 17, which resulted in the death of Captain Jennifer Casey, the Snowbirds Public Affairs Officer.
The return to flying operations follows a thorough technical and operational risk analysis that has outlined a series of risk mitigation measures. Due to the fact that there were two CT-114 Tutor accidents within eight months, the scope of the analysis was designed to be deliberate, detailed and broad to enhance the general safety of the CT-114 Tutor operations.
The risk mitigation measures being implemented place some restrictions on flying operations and focus on increased maintenance requirements.
A Directorate of Flight Safety (DFS) investigation into the Kamloops accident continues. Once the DFS investigation is complete, the RCAF will determine if further mitigation measures are required.
The remainder of the Snowbirds 2020 air demonstration season has been cancelled, and the team will now focus on gradually returning to flying operations. With the operational pause lifted, the aircraft in Kamloops, B.C. will return to 15 Wing Moose Jaw, Sask., which is expected to happen over the next two weeks.