OPP identify pilot in fatal Puslinch Township plane crash
Nadia Matos, CTV Kitchener
Published Saturday, September 24, 2016 6:46PM EDT
Last Updated Sunday, September 25, 2016 6:47PM EDT
Wellington County OPP is investigating an ultralight plane crash that killed the pilot Saturday afternoon.
Police say, Alfred Brunger, 63, of Waterloo was the lone occupant of the aircraft and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The crash happened around 3:45 p.m. in the area of Watson Road between Arkell Road and Stone Road, in Puslinch Township, not far from the Guelph Air Park Airport.
Raymond Burigana lives nearby and says he was in his backyard when the crash happened.
“The sirens were crazy for 20 minutes, 25 minutes there were just more and more and more sirens," says Burigana.
Along with OPP, Guelph Wellington EMS, and members of the area fire department responded to the crash.
Wellington County OPP Constable Kevin Martin says they're not sure yet if the plane was trying to land or had just taken off.
The manager of regional operations for the Transportation Safety Board Ewan Tasker, says their initial findings indicate that the plane came in quite steep.
“The aircraft came in very fast which would suggest it was out of control at that point,” says Tasker.
Investigators have removed the engine, propeller and a number of avionics.
Tasker says those pieces have been taken back to TSB office in Richmond Hill for further investigation.
Their next step will be interviewing the witnesses who saw the plane go down as well as Brunger’s family.
David Woodhall, a friend speaking on behalf of the family, says they believe Brunger was on his way home to land at the Region of Waterloo International Airport.
Woodhall says the 63-year-old was an early pioneer in solar power and started the Midnight Sun Solar Car Team at the University of Waterloo.
He says Brunger was a mechanical engineer who built the ultralight plane himself, and would often fly his plane to the family cottage.
Woodhall says Brunger was a brilliant, innovative and inventive person, with a love for life.
A member of the Mount Zion Lutheran Church in Waterloo says it was Brunger who managed the finances for the refugee program.
Brunger is survived by his wife Joan and their three adult children Elizabeth, Grace and Dan.