Jet crashes in Canadian Arctic, 12 killed

Sun Aug 21, 2011 4:30am EDT
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Twelve people were killed when a First Air jet crashed near Resolute Bay in the far north of the Canadian Arctic, but three people survived, the airline said on Saturday.

First Air, which flies to some of Canada's most remote communities, said the chartered Boeing 737-200 had been traveling from Yellowknife, capital of the Northwest Territories. It had 15 people aboard and it crashed just over a mile from the airport in Resolute Bay.

Resolute Bay, whose Inuit name, Quaasuittuq, means "place with no dawn," is one of Canada's most northerly communities, with sunless winter days and 24-hour sunlight in summer.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper is set to visit the community next week as part of an annual tour of the Arctic region.

Transport Canada said members of the Canadian military, in the region for a military training exercise, were supporting emergency services there.

(Reporting by Janet Guttsman; Editing by Peter Cooney)