Thanks to BCGA & COPA member Steve Drinkwater from Sechelt, BC who submitted an article for publication in the COPA Flight magazine about his experience on the 2016 Sumas Mountain Survival Shakedown.
In December 2016 we received an email from Chetwynd. BC;s Fire Chief and Emergency Coordinator Leo Sabulsky outlining the town's desperate need to have their runway resurfaced to facilitate continued Air Ambulance access to the community. Chief Sabulsky was applying for a grant from the BC Air Access Program to complete the project but needed written statements outlining the necessity of having the runway project completed.
BCGA Director Brodie Otway and BCGA Liaison Peter Lythall provided letters of support that aided in Chetwynd's successful application for the grant. Under the Air Access program introduced by the BC Liberal Government, the Chetwynd airport received 1.3 Million dollars towards this project and the resurfacing has been completed.
Copy of the Letter Provided By BCGA Director Brodie Otway:
Chetwynd airport will receive $1,301,350 in funding from the B.C. Air Access Program this year for runway resurfacing, announced MLA for Peace River South Mike Bernier, on behalf of Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone.
“Through the B.C. Air Access Program, our government is giving residents in rural areas a greater ability to connect with the rest of B.C.,” Bernier said. “I am pleased to see these improvements in Chetwynd which will help ensure our airport stays vibrant and will serve the people of the area for years to come.”
Subsurface work will be done and the runway paved to increase safety and reliability for emergency aircraft and passenger charter service landing at the airport.
Through the B.C. Air Access Program, the ministry cost shares with public airports on projects such as lighting and navigational systems, terminal building expansion or upgrades, and runway improvements. These types of projects will allow airports to improve safety, accommodate larger aircraft and more frequent flights, and further support the continuing growth of local and provincial economies.
The ministry has committed $24 million over the past three years for the B.C. Air Access Program. This year’s program is providing over $10 million for airport infrastructure improvement projects around the province. The program also encourages funding partnerships with the federal government, local and regional governments and agencies, and the private sector. Last year, the program provided over $8 million toward improvements at 23 regional airports throughout the province.
The B.C. Air Access Program is part of B.C. on the Move, the Province’s 10-year transportation plan. Over the next three years the ministry and its partners are investing over $4.6 billion in priority transportation investments as part of this plan.
For information on the B.C. Air Access program, go to: http://www.gov.bc.ca/BCAirAccessProgram
Copy of News Release From The BC Air Access Program
I’m the Crew Chief for a Flying Club based out of the Pitt Meadows Airport.
Last week one of our Members noticed some play in the leading edge of the Horizontal Stabilizer at its root on one of our Cessna 172's. It didn't take our AME long to diagnose it as a cracked rib on its leading edge.
It was what he said next that completely floored me, he explained that this type of damage is usually caused by people pushing down on the tail to spin the plane around. But how could this be, I watched every Instructor I had in the early 90's do it and even some of the older Service manuals recommended it.
I always knew that pushing down on the tail wasn't the best for the planes and discouraged our Members from doing it but I had no idea how much damage it could cause. A quick Google search produced hundreds of articles and photos on the subject and they all had a similar message, there is no correct way to push down on the tail of a Cessna by hand without eventually causing damage.
Written By: Kyle E. (BCGA Member)
Executive Administrative Director
British Columbia Aviation CouncilThe British Columbia Aviation Council is a member-driven organization representing and promoting the shared interests of the aviation community.
The Executive Administrative Director is responsible for the successful leadership and management of BCAC according to the strategic direction set by its Board of Directors.
This position is a full-time one-year contract (with possible extensions).
The successful candidate must work independently from their own home/ office, be flexible on hours of work and report to the Executive Committee of the Board.
CORE SKILLS AND ABILITIES:
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES
EXPERIENCE5 or more years of management experience with preference given to an aviation and or/not for profit background or extensive experience in a similar Executive Director Role.
TERMSThe position is a full-time one-year contract (with possible extensions). Hours will be flexible and should average 40 hours per week. The contract will begin with a six-month probationary period. BCAC will provide a work mail/ email address. Contractor must have access to their own computer and phone for work purposes.
Salary is $50,000 per annum.
HOW TO APPLYPlease forward one document that includes a cover letter and resume to Heather Bell, Chair BCAC at email@example.com. Application deadline is November 3, 2017 at 4:00 PM.
We are excited to announce that VSSL outdoor utility tools is now offering a BCGA member benefit. VSSL Outdoor Utility Tools is a local BC company headquartered in Abbotsford. VSSL designs and sells survival tubes made out of aircraft grade aluminum. Not only are they strong but they look pretty slick too.
The watertight VSSL tube comes equipped with a LED flashlight and compass in addition to 7 small tin compartments that are categorized and stocked with some essential survival gear. One of the really neat things about the VSSL tubes is that you can customize your 7 tins and either refill them yourself or order refills from VSSL.
The VSSL tubes are compact, light weight and will easily fit in a seatback pocket or in your flight bag. It is not a full replacement for a proper aircraft survival kit but it does cover many of the bases in true minimalist form and would make a solid addition to any aircraft kit, hiking pack or car glove box not to mention it would make a great gift.
VSSL has offered BCGA members a 15% discount on orders made through their website. The discount code is available on the BCGA sponsors page (You'll need your member login to view the code). Partnering with local innovative companies like VSSL is just one way that we work to bring value to our members.
The third BCGA Survival Shakedown was held on October 14-15, 2017 in Abbotsford, BC. This survival training event is designed to give pilots an opportunity to get acquainted with and practice using their on board aircraft survival kit.
The group of 15 members, 6 Instructors and 2 staff met at the Central Fraser Valley Search and Rescue Headquarters on Saturday morning. At the pre-briefing the group was treated to a comprehensive presentation given by Shaun Glass, a retired Canadian Forces Search and Rescue Technician and current volunteer member of the Central Fraser Valley Search & Rescue Team.
We would also like to point out that pilots traveled from, Manitoba, Alberta, Vancouver Island, Kelowna & the Sunshine Coast to participate in this exercise. We were also fortunate to have the support of Tim, Christie, Greg, Dave & Theresa from Central Fraser Valley Search & Rescue as well as Kyle, a BCGA member and Paramedic who volunteered his weekend to help out.
Mother nature was kind to the participants. While rain was in the forecast and the ground was wet despite the threat of a few showers the rain held off. The air was damp as we were situated in the clouds but all in all the participants managed to stay dry.
One of the interesting things about this exercise was the broad range of experience levels of the participants. The spectrum ranged from avid outdoors men to a few whom had never camped, spent a night outdoors or had even lit a fire. It was great to see the progression and mental fortitude of the novices throughout the exercise.
Another dimension that made this exercise unique was that CASARA was out practicing at the same time that we were on the mountain so we had a training ELT with us and the CASARA pilots were tasked with finding our location using the ELT. On Saturday the simulated crash site was obscured by cloud hampering the search but on Sunday morning several CASARA aircraft were able to pinpoint the location with surprising accuracy. This added an extra element of realism to the course.
Throughout the exercise the instructors made rounds to check on the participants' well being and to give hints and tips as to how to improve their set-up. Instructors worked in shifts throughout the night. The majority of the participants slept with little more than the clothes on their back and an emergency space blanket. Some had basic sleeping bags in their survival kits but in keeping with the theme of only using what you actually carry we were surprised and impressed by the number of participants that held true to the minimalist approach.
Some of the participants had some very creative ideas like using paper lawn clipping bags and stuffing them with rotten wood to use as an insulator and sleeping mat. Participants were also allowed to use anything that they came across in the forest.
While the temperatures overnight dropped to 4C and the participants were a bit chilly, they all found warmth and comfort around their fires which most kept going all night. We were fortunate with the weather this time around. Had it been wetter or colder it would have been a different story.
This exercise was meant to introduce pilots to the contents of their survival kit and to have them put some thought into the contents of the kit. It was not an episode of survivor man where we withhold, starve and torture the attendees. It is for this reason that as the pilots emerged shortly before sunrise they gathered at the instructor camp to enjoy a snack and hot chocolate in order to warm up some chilly and weary bones.
After a warm drink and a snack the participants were lead in a walk through, where all the attendees as a group visited each and every camp to learn and discuss what went right and what didn't for each individual pilot.
Once the walk through was complete, the group cleaned up and returned the forest to its original state ensuring that all fires were completely extinguished and all shelters were taken down. The group then gathered for a signal fire demonstration, fire extinguisher demonsration and prizes were awarded for best camp, and most ingenuity followed by the issuing of completion certificates.
The BCGA is very proud and grateful to have had the support of Central Fraser Valley Search and Rescue. They provided their headquarters & equipment for this event and 6 of their members volunteered their weekend to instruct our pilots. As a small token of our appreciation, the BCGA donated $500 from the course fees CFVSAR.
Lastly, we are very proud of our members that came to the event. Despite pushing their comfort levels not one person complained and every single participant embraced the exercise and truly brought nothing more than their typical survival kit.
The next exercise is being planned for the Spring and will be held somewhere else in the province.
We are also toying with the idea of having an Advanced course where select participants that have already completed and excelled at their first Survival Shakedown will be invited but will be left further afield in isolation and will have only the bare necessities after having much of their kit confiscated by the instructors.
Tips to share with those that couldn't make it that all pilots on the course would agree on:
1. Scrap the Axe/Hatchet: Every participant that brought an axe or hatched said that they would be removing it from their kit, opting for a folding saw.
2. Dress for the terrain that you are flying over, not for your destination.
3. Even with all the gear in the world, without knowing how to use it you can still die!
The BCGA Private Airstrip Access Program is coming soon. The program will enable private airstrip owners to have pilots complete and submit a waiver to allow access to their private airstrip. To kick off the BCGA PAAP program we are working with three airstrip owners to build a program that protects airstrip owners and enables pilots to use airstrips located on private property responsibly. Our hope is that this model is a success and that more private airstrip owners see this program as a way to open their property up to visits by pilots. The private airstrip access program page is located in the member's section of the BCGA website.
The BCGA Private Airstrip Access Program is working with private airstrip owners to :
1. Facilitate completion and submission of a common liability waiver to be completed by pilots and provided to airstrip owners prior to arrival.
2. Provide a central location (on the BCGA website) for private airstrip owners to share details, rules & restrictions pertaining to their airstrip.
3. Provide a central location (on the BCGA website) for pilots to check for the latest information about private airstrips and to obtain PPR.
4. Educate pilots and help instill a common code of conduct that pertains to acceptable use and behaviour when visiting a private airstrip.
If you own a private airstrip and would like to take part in the launch of this program please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Tickets are available for the BCAC Silver Wings awards Gala at the Vancouver Convention Centre on October 25th. This is a big industry event and the time an place where both the BCAC and the BCGA will present their 2017 scholarships.
Congratulations to all recipients of BCAC & BCGA scholarships and industry awards!
BCAC Scholarship Winners: