19 Wing Comox is one of six Royal Canadian Air Forces operating bases across Canada that will receive new runway snow-clearing equipment.
In an announcement March 5 in Manitoba, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan announced that Airport Technologies of Southport, Mb (near Portage La Prairie) was awarded a contract to deliver the equipment.
The contract is one of three recently awarded as part of the Snow and Ice Control Capability Recapitalization project. Together, the contracts will deliver new snowplows, snowblowers, runway sweepers and aircraft de-icer trucks.
The contract for Airport Technologies is worth $24.6M; both Global Ground Support in Kansas and Fresia s.p.a. Millesimo of Italy also received contracts for the equipment worth $8.1M and $8.9M respectively.
The project will replace equipment that is approximately 30 years old and reaching the end of its useful life.
“This investment will allow our members to safely do the challenging work we ask of them, no matter the weather,” said Sajjan in a press release.
Together, the contracts will deliver 22 runway snowblowers; 27 runway snowplows; 28 towed runway sweepers and nine aircraft de-icer trucks with an option for three more.
He noted the equipment is essential for the RCAF to ensure safe and effective air operations 24/7 in Canada during winter conditions that can last up to six months or more a year.
The first of the equipment is expected to arrive at both 3 Wing Bagotville and 14 Wing Greenwood in October 2020.
The other bases to receive equipment are 4 Wing Cold Lake; 8 Wing Trenton and 17 Wing Winnipeg.