Radio Inspectors Take Road Less Travelled
cautiously pilots the Blazer
through some difficult terrain as on-looking inspectors assess the situation
his mud bogging prowess
were: Radio Inspector Brad
Gagnon driving the truck, Radio Inspector trainee
Neil Papais, Fox Pro
Instructor, Assistant Radio Inspector
Brad Davis, and Radio Inspector
It wasn’t just an excuse to get dirty, it was
in their job description.
The Prince George Industry Canada Office recently
participated in an off-road driver’s training course held by Fox Pro Driving
Centre. The course, held for all District Office Number 16 radio inspectors,
was attended by Ernie Allen,
Brad Davis, Brad Gagnon and
Lund. Topics included safe 4x4 off-road handling, singular and multiple
winch assistance techniques and trailer towing.
Radiocommunication installations, such as mountain top radio
repeaters and broadcast stations, are usually located in areas only
accessible by off-road driving. Since Industry Canada (Spectrum Management)
employees often need to access these sites for investigation or inspection
purposes, skills in safe off-road handling are an asset.
Off-road handling skills are also important when there is an
Emergency Location Transmitter call-out for a downed aircraft. When a
call-out occurs, an inspector must be able to help emergency crews locate
the aircraft with direction-finding equipment, and off-road driving is
usually a part of the rescue. Both trucks driven by Prince George radio
inspectors have winches installed. The winches are invaluable when a vehicle
is high-centred or immobilized in mud or snow.
Another reason to take the course was the recent purchase of
a radio spectrum monitoring trailer. This trailer will be used in remote and
rural locations to gather information for the enforcement of authorized
spectrum usage, the development of a spectrum quality index and the
collection of spectrum usage statistics. Radio inspectors on assignment with
the trailer now have some driving experience.
The course proved thrilling to all trainees. They tackled
steep embankments, rough uneven terrain and vehicle-eating mud puddles.
Everyone from the timid to the fearless became more confident and increased
their mutual respect through the training. As some contenders backed up the
trailer with near flawless precision, others benefited from onsite guidance
in executing this difficult manoeuvre. In the end, each participant was
awarded a certificate of achievement, and a good time was had by all.