Otter number 80 was ordered by Associated Airways Ltd., of Edmonton and allocated registration CF-IKK. Associated Airways were one of the major Canadian airlines of the time and an important DEW Line contractor in western Canada. A number of its aircraft crashed during 1955, which caused the company great difficulty, and on 9th February 1956 it was announced that “final arrangements have been concluded for the acquisition by Pacific Western Airlines (PWA) of the stock of Associated Airways Ltd”. Associated then became a subsidiary of PWA. Its fleet at that stage comprised five Beavers, three Barkley Grows, two DC-3s, a Bristol Freighter, a York and the Otter which Associated had on order.
Otter CF-IKK was actually registered in the name of Pacific Western Airlines (Alberta) Ltd of Number 7 Hangar, Municipal Airport, Edmonton on 9th January 1956 and was delivered on 15th January '56, painted in the colours of Associated Airways, the subsidiary company of PWA, and went into service as part of PWA's Northern Division. As with the Wardair and Canadian Pacific Otters, the files of the Western Area SAR Co-Ordinator give details of IKK's activities during 1957 and 1958. For example, on 8th April '58 it flew from Norman Wells to Aklavik and on 13th April from Port Radium to Coppermine. July '58 saw it serving the same places, as well as Hay River and Yellowknife. On 25th August it was en route from Yellowknife to Contwoyto Lake and during September '58 it was again flying Yellowknife-Radium-Coppermine (13th); Coppermine-Yellowknife (14th) and Yellowknife-Fort Resolution (15th). In other words, it was one of those Otters which helped open up the Canadian North.
An incident involving the Otter is recorded at Pellatt Lake, Northwest Territories on 19th September 1965. The Otter had flown from Cambridge Bay to the lake with the pilot, a maintenance engineer and a passenger on board. During taxying after landing, the aircraft became stuck in a shallow, rocky area. An attempt was made to free the aircraft with the assistance of local persons and the use of a motor boat. Some confusion developed during this operation and when the engine was started, the maintenance engineer was struck by the propeller and seriously injured.
IKK continued to fly for PWA until 1966 when the company sold its bush operation to Northward Aviation Ltd., of Edmonton, to whom the Otter was registered on 8th March '66. Its new base was Number 8 Hangar, Industrial Airport, Edmonton although it continued to serve the Northwest Territories, flying out of Yellowknife. Northward Aviation later changed its name to Northward Airlines Ltd. IKK continued to fly for Northward until sold to Bradley Air Services Ltd., of Carp, Ontario to whom it was registered on 13th February 1974.
The Otter was involved in an accident at Leslie, Saskatchewan on 19th February 1976, when unsuitable terrain was selected for a take-off run. Take-off was made on a packed snowmobile trail, which was covered with a foot of deep snow. Once airborne, the pilot saw power cables crossing his flight path and decided to fly below them “at about a foot off the ground”. Unfortunately he didn't make it and CF-IKK was substantially damaged in the crash that followed. The wrecked Otter was trucked back to Bradley's maintenance base at Carp, Ontario where repairs were commenced, but were then suspended. The aircraft lay there for many years, before being sold to Kuby's Aircraft at Kenora, Ontario to where it was trucked. The registration CF-IKK was officially cancelled in July 1998, twenty two years after the crash. It appears that this Otter will not be rebuilt but will be parted out.
Full history courtesy of Karl E. Hayes © from DHC-3 Otter: A History (2005).