Northern TerritoriesNorthern Territories news
Updated: Sun, 13 Jan 2013 18:36:13 GMT | By CBC News, cbc.ca

Pilot in failed Arviat rescue has years of Arctic experience



Pilot in failed Arviat rescue has years of Arctic experience

The president of Custom Helicopters said the pilot involved in a failed helicopter rescue near Arviat, Nunavut, has several thousand flying hours under his belt.

Jim Hawes added that the majority of Yvan Lavertu's flying experience is in Quebec and Nunavik, and that he had flown in Arviat for a number of years.

"So he has substantial experience in the Arctic weather conditions and the flying conditions and he's a well-experienced pilot," Hawes said.

The military hired a chopper from Custom Helicopters, which is based in Manitoba, to rescue two stranded hunters on the ice near Arviat last week. However, once the chopper landed on the ice it started falling through.

The pilot managed to escape – one of the hunters, Joe Karetak, managed to pull him out of the freezing water with his harpoon.

Everyone was flown back to Arviat by a military helicopter. They were treated for hypothermia.

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