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Air transportation safety investigation A19P0002

The TSB has completed this investigation. The report was published on 2 April 2020.

Table of contents

Loss of separation

NAV CANADA Vancouver Area Control Centre
Vicinity of Kelowna, British Columbia

View final report

The occurrence

On , a WestJet Encore Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) aircraft (registration C-FSWE, serial number 4517), operating as flight 3109 (WEN3109), was conducting an instrument flight rules flight from Calgary International Airport, Alberta, to Nanaimo Airport, British Columbia. At about the same time, a privately registered Piaggio P.180 aircraft (registration N990RS, serial number 1015) operated by Rainbow Sandals Retail Incorporated, was conducting an instrument flight rules flight from Spokane International Airport, Washington, United States, to Kamloops Airport, British Columbia.

The Q400 was flying in a southwesterly direction from the northeast of Kelowna, British Columbia. The Piaggio was flying in a north-northwesterly direction from the south of Kelowna. Both aircraft were operating at flight level 220, and their flight paths would cross to the west of Kelowna.

At 1021:11 Pacific Standard Time, when the aircraft were west of Kelowna, a loss of separation occurred when the required vertical separation minimum of 1000 feet or lateral separation minimum of 5 nautical miles was not maintained. At that time, the aircraft were at the same altitude and less than 5 nautical miles from each other on converging tracks. At 1021:20, the Q400 flight crew received and responded to a traffic alert and collision avoidance system resolution advisory to descend. At approximately the same time, the Piaggio P.180 received a traffic advisory. At 1021:49, there was 1000 feet of vertical separation and 0.9 nautical miles of lateral separation between the 2 aircraft. Both flights continued to their destinations without further incident.

Media materials

News release


Error in flight plan data led to January 2019 loss of separation near Kelowna, British Columbia
Read the news release

Investigation information

Map showing the location of the occurrence


Jessica Hamstra joined the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) in 2019. Over the course of her aviation career, Ms. Hamstra has gained experience in numerous areas including flight training, medevac, charters, and scheduled airline operations. She has accumulated over 6000 hours of flight time on a variety of aircraft types, such as PA-28-140, C-180, King Air 100/200, Shorts 360, Dash 8, and Airbus A320.

Class of investigation

This is a class 3 investigation. These investigations analyze a small number of safety issues, and may result in recommendations. Class 3 investigations are generally completed within 450 days. For more information, see the Policy on Occurrence Classification.

TSB investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation

  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates air, marine, pipeline, and rail transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.