Watch: French firefighting plane clips barge during takeoff

Too close to call is an understatement.

Tzvi Lev ,


A routine water takeoff went horribly awry in France, when a Canadair CL-415 'Super Scooper' firefighting plane slammed into a barge upon takeoff. Authorities say that it was a miracle no one was hurt.

Footage shows a fleet of the firefighting Jets taking off from the Rhône River, in the Gard region in southern France. The first plane passes by at a safe distance, and as the camera continues rolling, a second plane fills the screen and slams into a barge.

French authorities said that the plane made an emergency landing at a nearby air force base.

The Canadairs belong to the fleet of the French Sécurité Civile, who operate them in order to ensure a rapid response to firefighters.