When Pete Archdekin, known locally as “Pete the Plumber,” went for a walk with his dog on Sunday evening, he didn’t expect to see a small airplane stall in the sky and plummet into a farmer’s field.
Archdekin was walking his dog near the Indus airport at about 7 p.m. Sunday when the small plane ran into trouble just a short time after it took off.
“All of a sudden it stopped,” Archdekin said. “I said, ‘Oh that’s not good.’ He stalled.”
Archdekin said he watched the small plane fall on a steep, 45- to 50-degree angle before hitting the ground hard and was first on scene to help the pilot, who was the only passenger.
When the pilot was out of the plane, Archdekin said it was evident he’d sustained injuries to his upper body and face
“I made him as comfortable as I could until EMS got there,” he said. “I kept talking to him and asking questions, not letting him go into shock.”
Archdekin said someone else reported seeing the plane go down, allowing first responders to make it to the crash site while he waited with the injured pilot.
“He had a bad back,” Archdekin said. “The EMS and firefighters put him on a spine board. They did a great job right in the middle of a farmers field.
“The ultralight was just smashed — gas leaking all over the place. The firefighters were all over that.”
EMS told Global News they got a call shortly after 7 p.m. reporting an ultralight plane had gone down. Paramedics took the single occupant, a man believed to be in his 50s, to the Foothills Medical Centre with minor injuries.
The Transportation Safety Board (TSB) confirmed to Global News it was made aware of the plane crash.
The incident was the second small aircraft crash in the same area over the weekend — the pilot of a small helicopter was killed after crashing on the shoreline of the Highwood River near Okotoks.