Canadian Armed Forces parachute training will be taking place in Comox from April 2-May 19. Photo by Gerry Fairbrother

Canadian Armed Forces parachute training will be taking place in Comox from April 2-May 19. Photo by Gerry Fairbrother

Canadian Forces to conduct search and rescue parachute training beginning April 2

Comox residents may hear a Skyvan aircraft flying overhead, and see parachutists jumping regularly between April 2 – May 19.

The aircraft involved will be contracted in support of the Canadian Forces School of Search and Rescue (CFSSAR) Search and Rescue (SAR) Parachute Operations training, as well as SAR Technician Parachute Re-Certification.

Including both students and qualified SAR techs from across the country, approximately 50 personnel will participate in the training, conducting both static line and freefall jumps with and without equipment to various drop zones in the area. For the students, this is just one phase of the intensive 11-month training course.

Flights and jumps are scheduled to occur in 3.5-hour blocks between the hours of 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., Mondays through Fridays. One weekend is currently scheduled for the initial parachute descents, April 2-3 (same times). Please note that these scheduled times may change due to inclement weather. All measures are being taken to ensure minimum inconvenience to those living near the training areas. While welcome to observe and photograph parachute operations, residents are asked to not to approach the drop zones.

Health protection measures will be enforced at all times. This training will adhere to the CAF Layered Risk Mitigation strategy, guidelines from the Public Health Agency of Canada, and guidelines from municipal and provincial health authorities.

Search and Rescue technicians are highly trained specialists who provide advanced pre-hospital medical care and rescue for aviators, mariners and others in distress in remote or hard-to-reach areas. These men and women are trained to a primary-care paramedic national standard with additional advanced skills. SAR techs specialize in land and maritime rescue techniques, including land, arctic and sea survival, confined area parachuting, rescue diving, mountain and helicopter rescue.

Canadian Armed Forces has the primary responsibility of providing aeronautical SAR services, and is responsible for the effective operation of the coordinated aeronautical and maritime SAR system. The CAF may also help with ground SAR efforts, medical evacuations and other incidents where people are in distress. CAF SAR crews are on standby 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Home to both CFSSAR and 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron, 19 Wing Comox remains on the front lines of SAR training and operations.

ComoxSearch and Rescue