It’s not often a Twin Otter is mistaken for a spaceship but a series of circumstances led to it being cast in that role last week.
A social media frenzy erupted after someone posted images of Canadian military vehicles rushing to the scene of what was reported to be a crashed UFO on the northern end of Lake Winnipeg.
But the Canadian Armed Forces quickly put an end to the rapidly expanding conspiracy theory (well, not quite as some UFO sites claim it’s all a coverup) as they explained a training exercise being conducted on the ice.
Members of the Army’s 38th Territorial Battle Group were involved in the simulated response to an aircraft crash on the ice. Among those involved were members of the Arctic Rangerson snowmobiles and tracked vehicles along with soldiers and equipment from army units and a Twin Otter from 440 Squadron in Yellowknife.
The ski-equipped aircraft landed at the simulated crash scene and witnesses mistook its landing lights and aggressive flight profile for a UFO. Add the response by the army and the strict security perimeter established and speculation ran wild, fueled by instant messaging and status updates.
Lt. Col Paul Davies calmed fears of an alien invasion with CBC News.
“There’s no aliens, just my friends in the air force who are out there helping us on this exercise,” Davies said. “I have the commander of that air force contingent sitting right beside me and, you know, he assures us that that was not a UFO, but that was him.”