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Pilot killed as RCMP helicopter crashes near Chilliwack

January 18, 2012  By The Vancouver Sun

Jan. 18, 2012, Vancouver - A 46-year-old civilian member of the RCMP died on Tuesday after the Air 5 helicopter he was flying crashed in a rural area in Cultus Lake, near Chilliwack.

Dave Brolin was the only person on board.

The pilot had successfully completed a training exercise and was about to return to base shortly before 2 p.m. when the crash occurred, said Chief  Supt. Wayne Rideout, the RCMP E Division’s deputy criminal operations officer.

Members of the RCMP’s emergency response team, who were present as part of the training exercise, took the pilot to hospital, however he succumbed to his injuries.

Brolin had been a civilian member of the RCMP for “several” years and had “extensive experience” as a pilot, Rideout said.


While he did not have statistics, Rideout said he believes such an occurrence is “extremely rare.”

“We have a number of aircraft. They receive the highest degree of maintenance and the equipment is top-notch,” he said.

“This pilot is a member of the RCMP that got up this morning and went to work to do his job,” Rideout said.

“He’s died on duty, and we need to ensure that his family, both immediate and extended, have the proper support. As well, we need to ensure those members of the RCMP that worked with him have proper support.”

The Transportation Safety Board (TSB) and the BC Coroners Service are now investigating the cause of death. The TSB will deploy a team today to assess the crash and speak to witnesses, said spokesman Bill Yearwood.

“If we can identify safety issues that can be fixed, we will make those public so we can mitigate that risk in the future,” he said.

Brolin leaves behind a wife and children.


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