Victims of Vernon plane crash identified
The BC Coroners Service has confirmed the identities of two men who died when a privately owned aircraft crashed near Vernon airport on Saturday (July 7) as James Langley, 59, of Kelowna and Karim Makalai, 53, from Port Moody.
The pair was killed when the twin engine Piper PA-23, owned and piloted by Langley, crashed shortly after takeoff from Vernon airport into nearby Marshall Sports Fields just after 1 p.m.
The plane lost power and clipped trees before slamming into the soccer field where it caught fire and burned on impact.
No other persons were involved in the accident.
The aircraft was based at the Kelowna Airport, where some media are reporting there has been an ongoing marmot problem.
Early speculation by Transportation Safety Board of Canada, which has begun examining the wreckage, say it is unlikely marmot damaged the plane’s engine.
However, investigators still have not ruled out the possibility.
The BC Coroners Service, with the assistance of the RCMP and the Transportation Safety Board, is continuing to investigate these deaths.