Nanaimo Air Show

June 12, 2011 by USA Post 

Nanaimo Air ShowNanaimo Air Show, The condition of a driver aged 71, seriously injured when his plane crashed into the ground at the Nanaimo Airport on the evening of Saturday morning was upgraded to stable Monday. He continues to receive treatment at the Victoria General Hospital.

Dr. Bill Phipps, an experienced pilot of Campbell River, was performing aerobatic routines in the wings and Wheels air show sponsored by the Club of Nanaimo flight before about 1,000 spectators.

The vocal crowd instantly silent when the plane lost altitude Phipps and crashed east of the track.

“It was a super racket while in the air and then just stunned silence after hit,” said Aaron Hamilton, a photographer who managed to snap a photo of the moment Phipps plane before it crashed.

John DeVries described the maneuver Phipps was treated as a quarter barrel before he had to correct their path and try to regain control.

“The right wing hit the ground and did a somersault. There was only dust and smoke no explosion or fire.”

First on the scene were the golfers from the nearby Cottonwood Golf Course, which were at first mistaken by some of the crowd that Phipps was out of the wreck. Players rushed to help the fallen rider. Minutes later, firefighters arrived at the scene and began to cut Phipps from the cab of his home Steen Skybolt biplane.

Cranberry Fire Department Chief Ron Phipps Gueulette reported that it had stabilized and conscious at the scene.

“He was conscious and talking to us during the rescue, but he was at the low end of the scale of consciousness.”

The accident occurred about 14:05 and AC a helicopter ambulance took off, carrying Phipps, at about 14:45 and went to Vancouver General Hospital at first, but was redirected to Victoria, in full flight.

Phipps suffered “significant injuries to his face and interior,” Nanaimo RCMP Const communications officer. Gary O’Brien said. “He was doing a series of rolls and loops. It reached the point where it was developed in another show and for whatever reason I lost power.”

No one else was injured. “It was an acrobat at low elevation and very experienced pilot. There was a high altitude,” said President and CEO Mike Hooper airport.

“Air shows are designed to provide a buffer between the acrobatics of the planes and the people watching below. There was a 1,000-foot buffer between the crowds for the acrobatic display was happening and went down the other side of the track. ”

The airport was closed to traffic for more than two hours to allow an assessment of the scene.

“It was very traumatic. Everyone has made out and the airport is virtually empty? Except for medical staff,” O’Brien said, shortly after the accident.

The reason of accident Phipps’ is still under investigation, but the photos and video have come to show the dramatic sequence of events leading to the accident.

An instructor of flight safety had turned his gaze plane moments before Phipps came dangerously close to the ground.

“I did not see, but I remember she was surprised by the amount of altitude and had lost so early in his routine,” said the pilot of Sigmund kind of Qualicum Beach. “When I looked back he hit the ground. Is likely to be stalled and lost his wings, raise.”

Sort Phipps recognized ability in the cckpit. He is very experienced and has built the plane that carried his name on the call, C-FIPS.

“He affectionately calls his plane cloth bags,” said Sort. “It is an airplane kit of white cloth and a wooden frame.”

The Nanaimo Flying Club canceled the remaining performances of the weekend out of respect for Phipps and declined to comment until the ongoing investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board has been completed.

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