Otter 111, registered CF-ODQ to the Department of Lands & Forests, was delivered to the Ontario Provincial Air Service (OPAS) on 20th June 1956. It was their fifth Otter and was delivered on the same day as their fourth CF-ODP (103). ODQ pioneered a new system of fighting forest fires in 1957. New 35 gallon tanks made of lightweight material were fitted on top of the floats, filled by two scoops. These tanks, having an operational capacity of 80 imperial gallons, were six feet long and 22 inches in diameter and were filled in ten seconds at 40 mph while taxying on the step. Once airborne, the pilot cascaded the water by rotating the tanks upside down. The original flight tests were carried out on ODQ, which was also used on real fires during 1957.
ODQ was to serve the Province for the next 28 years without any recorded incidents, a remarkable achievement. As with the other OPAS Otters, 111 was re-registered on 6th September 1972 to the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources as C-FODQ and continued to serve the Province's bush country. As the Ministry disposed of its Otter fleet during the mid 1980s, ODQ was sold. Its registration to the Ministry was cancelled on 5th December 1984 and it was registered to a company called Ellair Ltd., of Thompson, Manitoba. This was in connection with its acquisition by its next operator Northwinds Northern Inc., also of Thompson, to whom it was registered in March 1985. This was quite a large operator, which had a fleet of single Cessnas, a Beaver, several Piper Navajos and Britten Norman Islanders, but ODQ was its only Otter.
Having served at Thompson for ten years, it was next registered to Parry Sound Air Services Ltd., of McKellar, Ontario in April 1996. The following year it was registered to Peter Hagedorn Investments Ltd., on 22nd July 1997, trading as Chimo Air Service, based at Red Lake, Ontario and still sporting the all-yellow colour scheme of its days with the Ontario government. It was kept excellent company by the other members of the Chimo Air Service fleet, two Norsemen and a Beech 18. ODQ continued in service with Chimo Air Service during 2004.
Full history courtesy of Karl E. Hayes © from DHC-3 Otter: A History (2005).