6:30pm March 17, 2017 Quebec, Canada

Here's my resume of the communications that could have been important related the mid-air collision of two Cessna 152 today close to St-Hubert airport CYHU/YHU, near Montreal. The airplanes belong to Cargair, a popular aviation school where I actually did my Multi-Engines training and Transport Canada tests... I flew many times some of the aircraft mentioned by the controller (see below).

Again I've excluded some of the communications that did not appear to me to be "near/close" related to the mid-air collision, far from the event. The two pilots were students from China. Cargair is a very popular aviation training school with a constant flow of future 'commercial pilots' from China for airlines in China.

In BOLD are the communications of the two aircraft involved in the mid-air collision. As you can see, one was supposed to stay below 1100 feet and the other to stay above 1600 feet.

According to the last communications from the controller, it appears that C-GPNP was 'lower' than the assigned "not lower than 1600" altitude, asking the pilot to maintain 1600 feet.

TWO questions here.

Why was C-GPNP flying lower combined to, why did the pilot not answer the controller, pilots must answer the controller very promptly! Was it a technical problem forcing him to fly lower? But not being able to answer his radio at the same time? Was it health related? One of the two pilot died from the crash but the other one is alive, the pilot or C-GPNP it seems.

Now that it's over, don't speculate too fast… ask questions!
(you can hear the communications by yourself at https://youtu.be/1D8q_wPBrts)

  • 0:47 C-GPNP (Cessna 152) left downwind not below 1600'
  • 3:16 C-GVXM (Cessna 172) clear to take off
  • 3:27 C-GNDP 9 o'clock 0.5 Cessna 1800' not verified
  • 4:04 C-FILB (Cessna 152) turn base #1
  • 4:13 C-GAUB (Cessna 152) turn right to join a left base runway 24 left, left base runway 24L authorized, descend 1100'
  • 4:28 C-FGOI Cessna 152 Cargair ready for takeoff 24L turn eastbound not higher than 1100'
  • 5:05 (calling C-GCGV... no answer)
  • 5:37 C-GAUB #2 24L follow cessna 1 mile final
  • 5:40 (calling C-GCGV... no answer)
  • 5:45 C-FILB Clear Touch & Go 24 left
  • 5:50 C-GLVV 24 left - squawk ident (Cessna 152)
  • 6:23 C-GCGV (pilot): over Ste-Madelaine 1700' (controller) 24R clear right base not below 1600'
  • 6:57 BREAK C-GCGV Turn Left toward Mont St-Bruno avoid traffic 3oclock 0.5 mile, piper astec (PA-27 twin engine) on ILS runway 24 right
  • 7:27 C-GPNP maintain 1600' traffic 10 o'clock 1 mile cessna east bound 1100'
  • 7:38 C-GPNP make sure you maintain 1.6 (1600') 10 o'clock 1 mile Cessna east bound 1.1 (1100')
  • 7:55 C-GPNP Are you listening
  • 8:08 C-GPNP Are you listening

8:49 change of Controller...

Sylvain Faust