Nav Canada says it would never compromise safety at West Kootenay Regional Airport

Submission from Nav Canada regarding potential cuts to the West Kootenay Regional Airport

Submitted by Heather McGonigal, Assistant Vice President, Nav Canada

Nav Canada is recognized globally as having one of the best safety records in the world.

Allow me to address concerns raised in Castlegar News regarding proposed changes to air navigation services at West Kootenay Regional Airport.

Nav Canada would never do anything to jeopardize safety as a result of any changes it makes to the delivery of its services anywhere in the 18 million square kilometres of domestic and international airspace that we manage. This assertion is in complete contradiction to our core values, our history and the facts.

Nav Canada is recognized globally as having one of the best safety records in the world. This is a result of the focus and commitment on safety by all our employees. We have a deep, comprehensive understanding of the risks in the business of air navigation services, and we take those risks seriously 24 hours a day, 365 days per year.

From coast to coast to coast, Nav Canada offers different levels of service, which vary depending on the amount of air traffic, mix of aircraft, airspace configuration and other factors. In some locations, Nav Canada does not provide services, however, the airport remains open and users are still able to operate in a safe and efficient manner. To determine and respond to changing air traffic activity, Nav Canada regularly evaluates its services across the country.

Nav Canada is conducting several aeronautical studies across the country to review and adapt its operations and services. The aeronautical study process, one that we have applied safely and successfully for the past 25 years, provides a systematic methodology for analyzing complex issues using a risk management approach. It is an internationally recognized, comprehensive framework that involves full consultation with those affected by changes to air navigation services. Any changes made to our services as a result of those studies are submitted to Transport Canada, Canada’s aviation regulator, for concurrence.

Nav Canada’s decision to pursue a review of its services is first and foremost driven by air traffic activity now and in the future.

When making decisions, we always take a long-term view to uphold the highest standards in safety and to preserve the integrity of the air navigation system of behalf of all Canadians.

Heather McGonigal

Assistant Vice President, Nav Canada

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