Category Archives: Aviation news

Nav Canada Wants Airport Camera Feedback

Nav Canada is looking for feedback from pilots on their use of weather web cameras set up at dozens of Canadian airports. It issued the following notice:

Nav Canada’s Aviation Weather Cameras (Wx Cams) are an important resource used by pilots across the country. As we plan future deployments and upgrades, we want your feedback to ensure Wx Cams continue to successfully support pilot decision-making and ensure safer flight operations.

We are conducting a survey, to be completed by January 25, 2018, to better understand your Weather Camera needs, and to enhance our deployment policy.

Your feedback will support future upgrades and the integration of weather, NOTAM, electronic flight-plan filling for domestic flights, and aeronautical information from the Aviation Weather Web Site (AWWS) and through our network of Flight Information Centres.

Please access the survey through the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HY9BZG5

 By continuously investing in technology and service, we can improve on safety and flight efficiency.

For questions regarding this survey, please contact:

Customer Service Centre
77 Metcalfe Street
Ottawa, ON K1P 5L6
Phone: 1-800-876-4693
Fax: 1-877-663-6656
Email: service@navcanada.ca

Friday Conference Call on B.C. Hangar Assessments

COPA has received numerous complaints from our members across BC and we have consulted with our legal counsel on the best way to move forward. Based on the outcome of our deliberations, we have developed a strategy to assist our members on this file.

As we outlined in last week’s E-Flight, anyone who feels their hangar property has been incorrectly assessed, whether by value, classification, or otherwise, needs to file an appeal before the January 31st deadline. Appeals are free and can be withdrawn at any time. Our legal counsel recommends that appeals should be filed on the following grounds:

1.     Assessed value is too high;

2.     Assessed classification is incorrect;

3.     Allowable exemptions have not been applied;

4.     The assessments are inequitable when compared to similar properties.

We will be hosting a conference call for hangar owners this coming Friday, January 19th, to provide an update on our discussions and outline the path forward. However, in order for COPA to be able to provide assistance to those members, they must have filed their initial appeal.

We ask that you please share this email with the members of your COPA Flight/Flying Club. Members who wish to participate in the call on Friday are asked to please contact Carter Mann, Manager of Government Affairs and Communications: cmann@copanational.org; 613-236-4901×112.

No Landing Fees at Boundary Bay (BC)

In follow-up to an article before Christmas about a proposal by Alpha Aviation, operators of the Boundary Bay Airport (CZBB), to implement landing fees on all aircraft, we are pleased to report that after discussions between COPA, regional GA stakeholders including the BC General Aviation Association (COPA Flight 192), and management at Alpha Aviation, a moratorium is being implemented on fees for general aviation aircraft under 3,000kg (6,600lbs) and those aircraft will not be subject to a minimum fuel purchase for visits up to 2 hours in length.

COPA applauds management’s decision and commends Alpha for its continued commitment to supporting general aviation at the Boundary Bay Airport, one of the busiest airports in Canada. “Alpha Aviation and the Boundary Bay Airport have a well-established track record as friends of general aviation, including hosting COPA Flight 5’s annual COPA for Kids event – one of the most successful COPA for Kids events in the country,” said President and CEO Bernard Gervais. “We are pleased that management was willing to listen to the concerns brought forth by COPA and others in the GA community that implementing these fees would have a serious negative effect on GA in the region.”

As part of its interventions to Alpha, COPA highlighted the statistics in its 2017 Study on the Economic Impact of General Aviation in Canada, explaining that airports known to be “GA-Friendly” are consistently some of the most active airports in Canadian communities and can be major economic drivers in their regions. General Aviation contributes approximately $9.3B in direct and indirect economic output to the Canadian economy and supports approximately 36,000 jobs in businesses such as airport restaurants, maintenance facilities, and other services – many of which are found at Boundary Bay. COPA takes an active role of promoting to the GA pilots airports that are known to be friendly to the industry. We encourage pilots to do their part to support these airports by visiting often, patronizing tenant businesses, and purchasing fuel. For more information and to find airports recognized by COPA as GA Friendly, visit the Places to Fly page on our website at: http://www.copanational.org/places-to-fly.


[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]COPA Board of Directors Election 2018

Every two years half of the positions on the COPA Board of Directors are up for election.  In 2018 a total of seven positions representing the following regions will need to be elected:

Quebec (2 positions) – currently held by Jean Messier and Jonathan Beauchesne

Southern Ontario (3 positions) –currently held by Phil Englishman, Conrad Hatcher and Cheryl Marek

British Columbia & Yukon (2 positions) – currently held by Joe Hessberger and 1 vacant position

Any COPA member in good standing may run for a position in the region in which they live.  If you have a passion for general aviation and feel you have something to contribute to COPA both on the Board and as a regional representative, please consider volunteering for this very important work.  The term of office for this election shall commence at the summer Board meeting in June 2018 and continue until the summer Board meeting in 2022.

Nominations for these seven positions are now being accepted.

  • The deadline for receiving nominations is Thursday, February 8th, 2018. Candidates will be announced in the March COPA Flight and on the website.
  • The election will close on Monday, April 2nd, 2018. Ballots will be counted and results will be announced in the May COPA Flight magazine and on the website.
  • Based on the new Canadian Governance rules for no-for-profit guidelines, the slate of Directors elected in the regions will be presented to the COPA membership for ratification at the Annual General Meeting on June 23th.

Candidates should:

  • have a strong belief in COPA’s mission
  • have a passion for aviation
  • have a high standard of personal ethics
  • want to make a lasting contribution to general aviation
  • be able to spend a minimum or 15 days per year on COPA business (at three Board meetings per year and at regional events)
  • have ready access to email for Board communications

Nominations for a Director must be made in writing by at least five voting members from the same region (defined as paid-up regular members, their family members and persons designated by corporate members when they applied for membership).

Completed nomination forms must be received at the COPA office by 12:00 noon on Thursday, February 8th, 2018.

Forms are available here for download:

COPA Director Nomination 2018 form

Candidate Questionnaire 2018

Candidate Bio Form 2018

A list of candidates will be published in the March COPA Flight, along with information about the candidates and instructions on how to vote.

Voting is conducted online.  Alternatively, members will be able to request that a paper ballot be mailed to them.

In order to provide voters with comparative information on candidates, nominees will be requested to complete a candidate questionnaire and a 200 to 300 word biography, both which are to be submitted with the nomination form.

Facts to be included in the nominee’s bio:

  • Flying experience and currency
  • Aircraft ownership if any
  • COPA Flight or flying club affiliations
  • What is your main reason for wanting to be a COPA Director?
  • What is the single most important skill you feel you can bring to the Board?

Consider who you would like to see representing you on the Board and nominate them today, or if you would like to run yourself find a few members to nominate you.  Don’t hesitate. COPA needs good people to pursue its mission.

The COPA mission:  To advance, promote, and preserve the Canadian freedom to fly.

Nominee biography/platform:  Please include the candidate questionnaire, and in 200 to 300 words, a biography from the nominee that will be helpful to COPA members casting ballots in an election.

Interested candidates who wish to request an information package about being a COPA Director can email or call Tessa Toutant, Event Coordinator at 613-236-4901×107 or ttoutant@copanational.org[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

COPA Founder John Bogie To Hall of Fame

COPA Co-Founder John Bogie will be inducted into the Canadian Aviation Hall of Fame in 2018.

He is one of four inductees and will be joined by Gen. Paul D. Manson, O.C., C.M.M., C.D., Dr. John Maris and Dr. Dwight Gregory Powell, O.C. at a ceremony  June 7, 2018, in the Sunwest Aviation hangar at Calgary International Airport.

Bogie and Margaret Carson founded COPA in 1952 and has been active in the organization since its inception. Below is the Hall of Fame’s biography of Bogie.

Born into an aviation family in the United States, John Bogie has made his home in Canada since the early1950s, following service in the United States Navy, work as an airport operator, and as a very young charter pilot. In Canada, he quickly made a name for his charter and resource exploration work for Laurentian Air Services and Spartan Air Services, including the flight that identified the major iron deposit at Gagnon, Quebec.

Complementing his civilian flying, in 1952 Bogie became, with Margaret Carson, a co-founder of the Canadian Owners and Pilots Association (COPA), serving as its first President and Chairman. Since that time, he has been an unswerving supporter of COPA, seeing it grow from modest beginnings to some 17,000 members.

He served in most of COPA’s executive capacities and continues as an honorary director and life member. He still attends as many COPA events as he can, now into his 90s. His COPA accomplishments include simplified medicals for pilots and aviation liability group insurance now used by commercial carriers.

John  helped to create the Experimental Aircraft Association Canada organization, as well as a civilian pilot group for Search and Rescue as an adjunct to the military. Another entity he helped bring into being was the Canadian Business Aircraft Association (CBAA), first as an arm of COPA and then as a distinct entity. His Laurentian Air Services career ultimately took him to the presidency, to many initiatives to diversify its operations and to embrace the bilingual nature of the environment in which his company operated.

A subsequent stroke of initiative allowed him to buy a large consignment of ex-US Army Beavers which were rebuilt and put onto the Canadian market. This constituted the largest single aircraft purchase of its kind in Canada and made Laurentian the Canadian centre for Beaver activity. John Bogie has continued to support Canadian aviation long after his retirement in 1992. He continues to enjoy the respect and affection of the aviation community to this day.

Manson is a former Chief of Defense Staff and was in charge of implementing the CF-18 into RCAF service. Maris is a test pilot and well known innovator in electronic and other aviation products and Powell is an expert in medical evacuation services and the founder of STARS.

Forced Landing Inspires Song

An off-airport landing can be a life-changing experience and his injury-free night landing in a corn field near Sarnia inspired southern Ontario pilot John Cundle to write a song about the experience.

As we reported last week, the engine in Cundle’s Cessna 150 quit while on a night flight in late October. He couldn’t make the airport and didn’t want to risk others with a highway landing so he headed for the darkest patch of ground he could see.

As luck would have it, that turned out to be a nice, flat cornfield that brought him to a quick but safe stop.

The song pays homage to both the good luck and good training that combined for the good outcome.

The airplane is repairable but the cause of the power interruption is still being investigated.

Hear the song here.


Northern Lights Awards Presented

The Northern Lights Aero Foundation presented awards to eight female aviation leaders and up and coming recipients at its annual Gala Sept. 30 in Vaughan, ON. Each year the group recognizes industry veterans for their contributions but also keeps an eye on the future with young women honoured in the Rising Star, and for the first time this year, Aboriginal categories.

Recipients this year were:

Pioneer Award – Major (retired) Dee Brasseur, One of the first 2 female fighter pilots in Canada, flying the F18 Hornet, with 21 years of distinguished service and 2500 hours of flying jets.

Flight Operations Award: Heather McGonigal, Transwest Air’s Director of Flight Operations, a Training Captain and a Saab 340 line pilot. A Director for four years at the Air Transportation Association of Canada, she became Chair last year.

Government Award: Colonel (WSE) Helen Wright CD. MD. A Bioscience Officer with the Forces she is one the preeminent aircraft accident investigators with specialized knowledge in Human Factors analysis. She also led a team of aerospace medicine specialists, responsible for the oversight of the aircrew medical fitness of the RCAF. Helen is currently deployed on a one year mission to Bagdad.

Business Award: Heather Bell recently retired as the General Manager of the Vancouver FIR, Flight Information Region (Nav Canada). She has had a 33 year career in Navigation Services. During that time she received both the Chairman’s and the President’s Award.

Education Award: Joan Williams has more than 30 years in commercial aviation and flight training. She was the Flight Training Manager for Toronto Airways Ltd. for 10 years and then became the Director of Business Development. She is a long time member and Director of the Air Transportation Association of Canada and recently received their Lifetime Achievement Award. Joan has been a mentor and role model for many career pilots flying today.

Engineering Award: Catherine Tsouvaltsidis graduated from space engineering. Currently working Infrastructure Technology Solutions (ITS) for TD Bank, Catherine spent 6 years working in the Canadian Space Sector. There she worked on a variety of different projects including the refurbishment and upgrading of a 46m radio-astronomy dish; design, development and integration of a satellite tracking and monitoring platform; design, development and calibration of a micro-spectrometer aimed to measure soil moisture content from space to be used in large scale soil analysis and farming applications; and the design and development of a UV gas camera used to monitor SO2 volcanic emissions.

Rising Star: Jessalyn Teed is a student at the University of Waterloo (UW) enrolled in the Environmental Studies and Aviation program. In partnership with the UW program, she does her flight training at Waterloo Wellington Flight Centre (WWFC). At UW and WWFC, Jessalyn has taken on a Human Factors Thesis in Aviation studying the Best Practice for Millennials in the Classroom, which targets the aviation industry as the demand for pilots increases and the practices evolve.

Rising Star: Candace McKibbon is a Terminal Duty Officer with the Vancouver Airport Authority and an Operations Agent for Marquis Customer Service at YVR. In addition she is the Executive Director of the BC Aviation Council where she is active promoting aviation throughout the province.

Scholarships for Indigenous Women: Zoey Petit and Kandace Sittchinli were each awarded $5,000 scholarships sponsored by Jazz and the Northern Lights Aero Foundation to pursue aviation-related studies at accredited post secondary or flight training schools.

Collingwood Turbines Terminated

The company proposing eight wind turbines in the flight paths for Collingwood and Stayner Airports in southern Ontario has abandoned the project according to a local media report. Bayshore Broadcasting reported last week that an official with WPD Canada confirmed in an email to the radio station that the company’s board of directors had decided not to proceed further with the controversial development but declined to elaborate further.

WPD Canada had until Sept. 15 to appeal an Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal decision to revoke the project’s Renewable Energy Approval on the grounds that the 150-metre towers would pose a serious risk to human health since they were planned for sites within long-established flight paths for Collingwood’s municipal airport and a private strip near Stayner. COPA Counsel Glenn Grenier and Southern Ontario Director Conrad Hatcher directed a vigorous legal opposition to the plan.

Members of a group that organized to fight the project when it was first announced 10 years ago are claiming victory. For Betty Schneider and her neighbours, the turbines were less of a hazard and more of a nuisance but she said residents of the local community can feel relieved. “Their property value has just gone back up to where it should be,” she said.



COPA Addresses Quebec Airports Meeting

This week COPA was at the Conseil des Aéroports du Québec (CAQ) symposium in Rimouski (QC) where there were many discussions about costs associated with regional air transport and its necessity.  Regional air traffic in Quebec costs about 50% more than anywhere else in Canada, why?  Air Canada has the vast majority of the market in the province. Is competition needed to bring it down? Or is it simply a question of offer and demand, without a clear outlook on the future and the benefit for regions?  This will be taken up during the Quebec Regional Air Transport Summit Meeting to take place in February 2018

During the symposium, COPA was invited to present its economic impact study of general aviation which was appreciated and very well received by those present, mostly airport managers, operators and key industry players. Provincial MP Guy Bourgeois, who will lead the Summit, pressed COPA into making sure the study was submitted for the February 2018 Transport Summit. COPA also presented its initiative for a “National Aviation Scholarship Guide” to be published early 2018 which also garnered interest amongst the participants. The Scholarship guide will gather all information into one document, to be distributed across the country.

COPA Sets Privatization Record Straight

COPA President Bernard Gervais has asked his American counterpart to stop mischaracterizing the impact of privatized air traffic control on general aviation in Canada. The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association is a lead member of a group of aviation organizations fighting a bid by U.S. President Donald Trump and some members of Congress to separate air traffic control from the Federal Aviation Agency.

In his regular column in AOPA Pilot magazine, Baker said: “General Aviation in Canada no longer thrives, and it’s unfortunate to see pilots there don’t have the same options we enjoy here in the United States.” Gervais immediately wrote Baker telling him the assertions are false and asking him to please stop using Canada as an example of the negative effects of privatized air traffic control. “At the end of the day, our members are largely satisfied with the service we receive from Nav Canada and all of them take exception with the idea that Canadian GA is dead,” Gervais said. “We are not against your opposition to privatization, we are asking that you stop using Canada as your example.”

The column appeared three weeks after Gervais spent considerable time at AirVenture 2017 educating AOPA officials on the accurate picture of GA attitudes on air traffic control in Canada. He took that on after being approached by an AOPA reporter looking for Canadian pilots to offer negative comments on NavCanada and finding none. “COPA met with AOPA to set the record straight and talk about the facts,” Gervais told Baker. “Using examples such as landing fees, FBO fees, and fuel prices to show the ‘negative impacts’ of ATC privatization does nothing more than demonstrate AOPA’s lack of understanding of the situation in Canada.”

AOPA Pilot Editor-in-Chief Tom Haines immediately responded to Gervais, explaining that Baker’s column was written before AirVenture and AOPA’s education on the situation in Canada and he pledged a different approach going forward. “Your comments were heard loud and clear and we will stop painting with such a broad brush when referring to the impact of privatization on other nations,” Haines wrote.