This is an update to this older post: Is the Fredericton Airport (YFC) safe?

On Tuesday July 7th, CBC Fredericton’s Terry Seguin interviewed the principal of the Moncton Flight College and was able to answer 3 of my 4 questions.  I’ll summarize the answers below:

  • This occurred on June 2nd. Why was there no media coverage of this incident? It was serious enough to warrant a TSB (Transportation Safety Board) investigation. The media did not cover it because they didn’t know about it. They got scooped.
  • The control tower is actually in Moncton. With this amount of air traffic, why isn’t there one here? Is there anyone at all in the Fredericton tower? There is someone there, but they don’t do a whole lot. According to the airport management, the airport will soon have a full service control tower.
  • Why were the students in the airspace that belonged to the Air Canada plane? Shouldn’t they have been told to move? Isn’t negotiating air space with air traffic controllers a vital skill that every commercial pilot needs to know about? At airports that don’t have control towers, airspace isn’t reserved. Aircraft in the area are informed of incoming traffic and the other pilots then have some sort of system they use to stay away. At a non-busy airport, this is usually a non-issue as there is so little air traffic. Now that YFC has the flight training school and all it’s air traffic, it’s obvious that this is a genuine safety concern. I would expect a statement from NAV Canada (the crown-corp resposnsible for air traffic control) that would say that the conversion to a control tower was planned long before the incident on June 2nd.