Beaver Rams Otter, Police Seek Suspect

Vancouver, BC: FEBRUARY 21, 2020 — Vancouver police are investigating after an incident at the Harbour Air seaplane base early Friday, February 21, 2020. Someone tried unsuccessfully to steal a seaplane from the base. At least two seaplanes were heavily damaged during the attempted theft. One Seair Beaver aircraft and a Harbour Air Otter aircraft sustained damage. The Beaver lost a wing and the Otter had wing and tail-section damage. No arrests have been made. (Photo by Jason Payne/ PNG) (For story by Tiffany Crawford) ORG XMIT: planecrash [PNG Merlin Archive]

Police are still looking for the man who got a Seair Beaver running and crashed into at least one Harbour Air Otter at the seaplane terminal in downtown Vancouver on Friday. At least one other Harbour Air aircraft was also damaged. Details remain scant about the incident as the investigation continues. “We are currently working with the police to provide any support required during this investigation as the safety and security of passengers is our priority,” Harbour Air said in a statement. “Until the investigation is complete, we will not be speculating on details.” The suspect reportedly fled on foot.

The radial-engine Beaver’s prop sliced the empennage and right through the right wing of the Otter. The beaver lost one wing entirely and had prop and presumably engine damage. Just how the culprit got on to the seaplane dock, which is in Coal Harbour at the west end of Vancouver’s downtown core, isn’t clear. It’s also not known if he’s suspected to have flight experience given that starting a cold Beaver is a multi-step process that sometimes defeats even the most experienced operators.