Questions about the Castlegar Airport study

Technology currently not available in Canada would be required to improve landing rates in Castlegar.

Technology currently not available in Canada will be required to improve landing rates at the Castlegar airport.

Jeppesen, the aviation consulting company on contract with the City of Castlegar to find a way to improve landing rates at the Castlegar airport, reported in 2014 that no technological fix was possible.

What has changed since then? Has there been a technological breakthrough since 2014 to allow this possibility?

If there is, Jeppesen doesn’t want to tell the Star about it.

In February, 2015, the Star published an article quoting two aviation experts who said there was no possible technological fix for the Castlegar airport.

They based their opinions on a report done for Nav Canada by Jeppesen about the Castlegar airport in 2014.

To assist the Star in writing that article, Jim Ferrier of Nav Canada and Jeff Bruce of Jeppesen prepared a two-page summary of Jeppesen’s 2014 report on the airport.

Nav Canada is the company that runs navigational systems in all Canadian airports.

Ferrier and Ron Singer said that RNP (Required Navigation Procedure) technology has helped airlines around the world land with greater safety under lower cloud cover or in difficult terrain, but that RNP cannot be used to improve take-off.

Even if an RNP system allowed a plane to land under low cloud cover, “air operators are unlikely to dispatch an aircraft to a destination from which it cannot depart in inclement weather,” Ferrier and Bruce said in the summary of the 2014 report.

Later this year, the City of Castlegar hired Jeppeson on a $260,000 contract to work out a technical solution to the airport’s poor landing statistics.

The Star asked Mayor Lawrence Chernoff for his view on the apparent contradiction between this contract and the study Jeppesen did for Nav Canada in 2014. We asked if there has been new technology developed since 2014.

Chernoff referred the Star to one of the Jeppesen employees who visited Castlegar last summer to develop the contract.

He did not return the Star’s emails or phone calls but referred us to Michael Pound, a Jeppesen communications officer, who told the Star he would consult someone at Jeppesen with expertise in this area and get back to us.

That was on September 21. On October 12 we sent him a reminder email. Still no response.

We emailed Nav Canada’s Singer and Ferrier and asked them to confirm the accuracy of the Star’s February article. Both told us it is accurate.

We then asked Singer what has changed, either in technology or in regulations, since 2014 when it was Jeppesen’s opinion that RNP could not be used for take-off in Castlegar or anywhere else. He said nothing has changed.

“Currently there are no RNP take-off procedures in Canada,” he said.

Singer had no comment on whether there were emerging techologies in other parts of the world that Jeppesen might recommend for Castlegar.

He said any new technology would have to be approved for use in Canada by Transport Canada.

 

Just Posted

Avalanche Canada issues special public warning

Very weak layer buried under recent snow a cause for concern

KBRH on watch for bed bugs after two recent cases

Spokesperson Mandy Lowery says there has not been a bed bug sighting at KBRH since Dec. 8

Coffee card donations return at Wait’s News

The program supplied over 200 cards last year

Trafalgar students build home for sanctuary horse

Grade 8 students collaborated on a project with a local farm sanctuary

Nelson won’t restrict parking amnesty to West Kootenay

So far, more than 800 people have responded with amnesty payments

CFIA announces recall of some types of cauliflower, lettuce due to E. coli fears

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has announced a recall of certain types of cauliflower and lettuce due to possible E. coli contamination.

Top of mind: ‘Justice’ is Merriam-Webster’s word of the year

Merriam-Webster has chosen “justice” as its 2018 word of the year, driven by the churning news cycle and President Trump’s Twitter feed.

‘Spider-Verse’ swings to the top; ‘Mortal Engines’ tanks

“Spider-Verse” has been very well-received among critics, and audiences in exit surveys gave it a rare A+ CinemaScore.

Canadians spent almost $64,000 on goods and services in 2017

Households in B.C. each spent $71,001 with housing costs contributing to higher average

Speaker at rally says Alberta oil ‘puts tofu on the table in Toronto!’

RCMP estimated more than 1,500 people attended the rally in Grande Prairie

White House closer to partial shutdown with wall demand

Without a resolution, parts of the federal government will shut down at midnight on Friday, Dec. 21

Canucks score 3 power-play goals in 4-2 win over Oilers

Vancouver sniper Boeser has 6 goals in last 5 games

Microscopic parasite found in Prince Rupert water affecting thousands

More than 12,000 residents affected by the boil water advisory issued Dec. 14

Trudeau lashes out at Conservatives over migration “misinformation”

Warning against the “dangers of populism,” Trudeau says using immigration as a wedge political issue puts Canada’s future at risk.

Most Read