GRAND MANAN, New Brunswick — A paramedic on duty at the time and the pilot and president of Atlantic Charters were both killed when a plane crashed about 5 a.m. Saturday in Grand Manan, New Brunswick, according to Ambulance New Brunswick in a news release.
The plane hit the ground in a grassy area, just feet from the landing strip at the Grand Manan airport.
A second pilot and nurse from the Grand Manan hospital survived the crash. There was no patient aboard the plane, and no one was injured on the ground.
The paramedic has been identified as William Mallock, who had nearly 20 years of experience as a paramedic, and the pilot was Klaus Sonnenberg. Sonnenberg has owned Atlantic Charters since 1982.
Sonnenberg maintained a LinkedIn profile, stating that he had more than 30 years of experience flying from the Bay of Fundy island to destinations in Atlantic Canada and eastern North America.
In a statement released Saturday evening, Ambulance New Brunswick offered thoughts and prayers to the families, friends and colleagues of “those whose lives were lost.”
“William, or Billy as he was known by his friends, and the pilot lost their lives serving the public and helping patients,” Paul Ward, interim president at Ambulance New Brunswick, said in the statement. “We also want to express our sympathies and the hope for a speedy and complete recovery to the two others that suffered injuries in the accident.”
Transportation Safety Board officials made their way to Grand Manan to investigate. They had planned to speak to the two survivors on Saturday before heading to the island.
Atlantic Charters released a statement Sunday morning, also extending thoughts and prayers to the injured and sympathy to Mallock’s family.
“We are asking for your respect to give our community, company and family time to heal,” Atlantic Charters said.
The plane that crashed was a Piper Navajo (PA31).
According to the Atlantic Charters website, that type of plane can travel a maximum of about 211 mph, and its standard tasks include medevac flights.
It is still too early to determine the cause of the crash, Ambulance New Brunswick said.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police blocked the site off from media Saturday and sent a helicopter to investigate the scene.