RCAF Search and Rescue technician dies in training accident

A Royal Canadian Air Force Search and Rescue technician has died in a training accident near Yorkton, Sask.

Master Cpl. Alfred Barr died in during training Wednesday, according to the RCAF. He was a member of 435 Transport and Rescue Squadron based in Winnipeg.

"The RCAF's Directorate of Flight Safety will be investigating the accident and no further information will be released about the incident while that is ongoing," the military said in a statement.

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan called Barr "one of Canada’s finest Search and Rescue Technicians."

"Having had the privilege to meet with members of the Search and Rescue Community, I appreciate the risks they take, day in and day out, in fair and bad weather, to come to the aid of Canadians in peril," he said. This is exactly what Master Corporal Barr was preparing for today."

The commander of 17 Wing Winnipeg, Col. Andy Cook, also expressed his condolences to Barr's family, friends and fellow service members.

It's the second deadly training accident in less than six months in Saskatchewan.

In November, Capt. Thomas McQueen died during a training mission near the Alberta–Saskatchewan border.

It's also the second death in just over two years of a Canadian Forces member who was part of the 435 Transport and Rescue Squadron.

Search and Rescue technician Sgt. Mark Salesse died in 2015, after being buried under snow during an exercise in Banff National Park.

Salesse's death led to a military inquiry that recommended that Search and Rescue technicians update their mountain rescue training skills every year.

With files from the Canadian Press