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Archived - New radio channels will improve communications and safety on rural and remote roads in British Columbia

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Dedicated channels will support B.C.'s logging, mining, energy and sport tourism industries

June 5, 2014 – Ottawa – Industry Canada

On remote and isolated backcountry resource roads in British Columbia, reliable and quick communication can mean the difference between life and death. Today, Industry Minister James Moore, in partnership with the Province of British Columbia, announced a new client-focused approach to managing radio communications on the province's resource roads.

Industry Canada will dedicate 40 new exclusive radio channels to improve the effectiveness of communications and increase the safety on resource roads. This action will help reduce any interruptions or interference among radio communication users on these roads, resource sectors and other radio spectrum services.

Soon, truck drivers and other users of resource roads will no longer need to worry about having the correct radio channel to safely travel in B.C.'s backcountry. With the 40 new dedicated radio channels, they'll be equipped to work throughout the province.

These improvements to spectrum management will be accompanied by additional measures, such as standardized signs and uniform radio calling protocols, that will further improve safety on B.C.'s resource roads.

Quick facts

  • The resource sector provides more than $10 billion to British Columbia's economy and contributes approximately 38,700 jobs each year in the areas of forestry, logging, mining, and oil and natural gas extraction.
  • There are more than 650,000 kilometres of resource roads in British Columbia alone.
  • Resource roads are not just used for commercial and industrial purposes such as logging, mining or oil and gas extraction; they are also used by sportsmen, wilderness enthusiasts and Aboriginal communities.
  • A typical resource road is a narrow, one- or two-lane passage with a gravel surface. These roads are built mostly to access natural resources located in remote areas.
  • Ninety-five existing spectrum users will soon begin moving to new channel assignments to make way for the 40 new channels, allowing for more orderly and effective use of communications on resource roads.
  • Existing users will only move once a replacement channel has been identified that fully meets their needs.

Quotes

"Spectrum is a critical public resource, and it is our job as a government to ensure that it is allocated in such a way that benefits all Canadians, including those in isolated areas. New dedicated radio channels will give travellers along the 650,000 kilometres of resource roads in remote areas of British Columbia access to better communications."

- Industry Minister James Moore

"These dedicated radio channels are part of a resource road radio protocol that will improve safety for all resource road users. Industry Canada, ministry staff and B.C.'s resource sector stakeholders have worked collaboratively to make this happen."

- Steve Thomson, B.C. Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

"The new resource road radio channels will significantly improve the safe use of industrial forest roads. All provincial users can have a complete set of established channels, allowing them to immediately integrate to the local radio control rules wherever they work. It's a very positive initiative in support of improved road safety."

- Gordon Todd, Roads Coordinator, West Fraser Mills Limited

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Contacts

Jake Enwright
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Industry
613-995-9001

Media Relations
Industry Canada
613-943-2502
media-relations@ic.gc.ca


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