Airwave interference problem

Aircraft en route to Europe were receiving radio transmissions from fishing vessels instead of flight information, until the Halifax District Office located and fixed the problem.


On December 20, the regional office in Moncton received a call from the Federal Communications Commission, the U.S. frequency regulator, reporting a complaint that fishing vessels were heard on the international aircraft frequency by U.S. airplanes as they flew over the Maritimes. The transmissions were cutting off aircraft communications with Airinc, an air/ground communications station in New York.


The problem was resolved within 24 hours when Radio Inspector Gerald Currie of the Halifax District Office, who was monitoring the transmissions, identified the owners of the vessels. He heard several references to the port of Glace Bay, Nova Scotia. As well, the names of the radio operators were given as Bobby and Ralph.


After a few phone calls to fish plants in Glace Bay, Currie spoke with an official of Highland Fisheries who identified the captains and promised to confront them about using a frequency reserved for aircraft.

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