NAV CANADA reports May traffic figures

From NAV CANADA

OTTAWA, June 12, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — NAV CANADA announced today its traffic figures for the month of May 2020 as measured in weighted charging units for enroute, terminal and oceanic air navigation services, in comparison to the last fiscal year.

Traffic in May 2020 decreased by an average of 73.6 per cent compared to the same month in 2019. NAV CANADA’s fiscal year runs from September 1 to August 31.

Weighted charging units represent a traffic measure that reflects the number of flights, aircraft size and distance flown in Canadian airspace.

NAV CANADA releases proposal to change service charges

From NAV CANADA

OTTAWA, May 20, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — NAV CANADA today released, for consultation, a proposal to revise customer service charges, effective September 1, 2020. The proposal calls for increased service charges averaging 29.5% in base rates and includes provisions to ease the cash flow impact of the increase on its customers through payment deferral mechanisms.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the aviation industry has significantly reduced NAV CANADA’s liquidity. Revenues and cash inflows have been substantially reduced as compared to its approved budget. All operating and capital spending has been reviewed and actions have been taken to reduce spending and cash outflows while at the same time ensuring the continued fulfillment of NAV CANADA’s statutory mandate to safely operate and maintain the Canadian air navigation system as an essential service. NAV CANADA will continue to pursue all opportunities for additional operating and capital spending reductions.

NAV CANADA acknowledges that this increase comes at a time when its customers are also in exceptionally difficult circumstances as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and is therefore proposing to defer the fiscal 2021 cash impact of the increases to its customers, over a five-year period.

“NAV CANADA is proposing this rate action only after having actively pursued all available alternatives, including government assistance,” said Neil Wilson, President and CEO. “All available alternatives, including further government assistance will continue to be explored and utilized in order to minimize or avoid the proposed rate increase.”

As the majority of its costs are fixed, NAV CANADA cannot fully offset significantly lower revenues and cash inflows due to recent decreases in air traffic volume during COVID-19. The consequent reduction of available liquidity has prompted NAV CANADA to seek additional debt financing. In order to meet the additional indebtedness provisions of its existing debenture agreements however, it must achieve a minimum level of revenue in its fiscal 2021 year. The proposed service charge increases are required for NAV CANADA to meet that minimum revenue level.

The proposal is now subject to the mandatory 60-day consultation period required by legislation. Input received during the consultation period will be considered by NAV CANADA’s management and Board of Directors, prior to a final decision being made on the proposal. 

Details of NAV CANADA’s proposed revised service charges are available here:

NAV CANADA reports April traffic figures

From NAV CANADA

OTTAWA, May 19, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — NAV CANADA announced today its traffic figures for the month of April 2020 as measured in weighted charging units for enroute, terminal and oceanic air navigation services, in comparison to the last fiscal year.

Traffic in April 2020 decreased by an average of 74.7 per cent compared to the same month in 2019. NAV CANADA’s fiscal year runs from September 1 to August 31.

Weighted charging units represent a traffic measure that reflects the number of flights, aircraft size and distance flown in Canadian airspace.

NAV CANADA implements temporary level of service changes to ensure the continuity and safety of Canada’s air navigation system

From NAV CANADA

OTTAWA, May 05, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — NAV CANADA continues to take action, implementing the best preventative measures possible to ensure the continuity and safety of Canada’s air navigation system throughout the COVID-19 crisis.

As part of this response, air navigation services will be temporarily suspended overnight at 18 air traffic service facilities, including air traffic control towers and flight service stations, and locations which receive remote airport advisory services. Transport Canada has approved these temporary changes to levels of service, which will be in effect for a period of 120 days, subject to prevailing conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Aircraft will continue to be able to land and depart the affected airports. Affected airports will remain open and aircraft will continue to be able to land and depart. For every site where overnight ATS service will be temporarily suspended, the following enhanced services will be available:

  • At a minimum, Limited Weather Information System which consists of hourly wind, temperature, dew point and altimeter information. This will maintain 24 hours/day IFR access to all airports.  
  • Communication capability during all phases of flight, via flight information centers (FICs) and/or area control centers (ACCs). This will maintain communication between pilots and the respective FIC and/or ACC in order to provide current and forecast weather, NOTAM, IFR approach and departure clearances, with communication coverage to or below circuit altitude with most sites having coverage to the ground. 

The temporary level of service change will allow NAV CANADA to implement flexible staffing, reducing the risk of exposure to COVID-19 for our operational units. These new measures greatly reduce the likelihood of a full unit closure and keep operators and the flying public safe through continued delivery of essential air navigation services.

Quick Facts

  • This temporary change has been made after a prudent assessment of overnight traffic levels at all affected locations against the services required to fully ensure safe operations, in consultation with our unions and with the support of Transport Canada.
  • At its area control centres, NAV CANADA has implemented a “crew” system that minimizes interaction between teams. However, this level of staffing is not available at some of our regional facilities without the temporary reduction in service.
  • NAV CANADA has undertaken a full and detailed risk analysis to ensure that the temporary level of service changes at affected sites can be implemented safely. These changes will help to ensure that our critical services remain available for when there is demand. 
  • Pilots can receive detailed information about these new levels of service through NOTAM.
  • NAV CANADA’s safety record is one of the best in the world amongst air navigation service providers. We have achieved this record based on a regulated decision-making approach with safety at the very core of all that we do.
  • These temporary reductions will be in effect in the next week for a period of 120 days, subject to prevailing conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic. Specific details for each location are available by NOTAM.
  • Overnight air navigation services will be suspended at the following facilities:
AirportATC ServicesFSS Services
Fort Nelson BC (CYYE) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Port Hardy BC (CYZT) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Prince Albert (Glass Field) SK (CYPA) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Cranbrook BC (CYXC) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Penticton BC (CYYF) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Terrace BC (CYXT) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Red Deer Regional AB (CYQF) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Fort St. John BC (CYXJ) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Kamloops BC (CYKA) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Deer Lake NL (CYDF) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Charlottetown PE (CYYG) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
Saint John NB (CYSJ) FSS (2200-0600) lcl
St. Anthony NL (CYAY) RAAS (2200-0600) lcl – CYDF
Sandspit BC (CYZP) RAAS (2200-0600) lcl – CYXT
Sydney/J.A. Douglas McCurdy NS (CYQY) RAAS (2200-0600) lcl – CYYG
Kelowna BC (CYLW)TWR (2200-2330) lclRAAS (2330-0600) lcl – CYYF
Victoria Intl BC (CYYJ)TWR (2200-0100) lclRAAS (0100-0600) lcl – CYKA
Abbotsford BC (CYXX)TWR (2200-0000) lclRAAS (0000-0600) lcl – CYXC

Plane from Yellowknife slides off runway in Kugaaruk and into snowbank

News from CBC News – link to story and updates

No passengers on board Buffalo Airways plane, crew members safe

Beth Brown · CBC News · Posted: Apr 28, 2020

A Buffalo Airways plane sits in a snowbank at the runway in Kugaaruk, Nunavut, on Tuesday. The plane landed around 1 p.m. MT. All crew members on board are safe and there were no passengers. (Submitted by Barnaby Immingark)

A King Air plane operated by Buffalo Airways slid off the runway in Kugaaruk, Nunavut, on Tuesday, during low visibility weather.  

The plane landed around 1 p.m. MT., according to a resident. All crew members on board are safe and there were no passengers, according to Buffalo Airways.

In a news release, Buffalo Airways said the aircraft “slid off the side of the runway and into a snowbank” on Tuesday afternoon.

NAV Canada reporting shows winds were around 50 km/h and snow was blowing moderately at the time. 

The Transportation Safety Board has been notified as part of the company’s emergency response plan, the release said. 

The aircraft was en route from Yellowknife, according to flight tracking website FlightAware.

With files from Salome Avva

NAV CANADA reports March traffic figures

From NAV CANADA

OTTAWA, April 20, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — NAV CANADA announced today its traffic figures for the month of March 2020 as measured in weighted charging units for enroute, terminal and oceanic air navigation services, in comparison to the last fiscal year.

Traffic in March 2020 decreased by an average of 27.9 per cent compared to the same month in 2019. NAV CANADA’s fiscal year runs from September 1 to August 31.

Weighted charging units represent a traffic measure that reflects the number of flights, aircraft size and distance flown in Canadian airspace.

NAV CANADA announces second quarter financial results

From NAV CANADA

OTTAWA, April 14, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — NAV CANADA today released its financial results for the three and six months ended February 29, 2020.

In the second quarter of fiscal 2020, the Company’s air traffic growth was flat on a year over year basis, as measured in weighted charging units (negative growth of 1.1% excluding the effect of an extra day for the leap year). The Company’s revenue for the second quarter of fiscal 2020 was $322 million, compared to $317 million over the same period in fiscal 2019, and reflected revised customer services charges, whereby existing base rates increased on average by 0.8%, effective September 1, 2019, to recover the cost of domestic space-based surveillance data services and by 3.6% on average, effective January 1, 2020, to recover the cost of oceanic space-based surveillance data services.

In late December 2019 and early 2020, a novel coronavirus was confirmed in multiple countries throughout the world and on March 11, 2020, was declared as a pandemic by the World Health Organization. The outbreak and resulting economic contraction has had, and is expected to continue to have, a negative impact on demand for air travel globally. 

Starting in the latter part of February and continuing in March and April of 2020, NAV CANADA has seen a decline in air traffic movements as compared to the same period in fiscal 2019. The impact on air traffic movements is due to flight and route cancellations and the introduction of fleet groundings, travel advisories and restrictions occasioned by the pandemic.

While it is still too early to say what the extent of the impact will be on our future results, we anticipate the reduced activity will have a significant negative impact on NAV CANADA’s business and results of operations. 

Apart from the impact of this pandemic on our revenues and operations, there may also be disruptions, including to supply chains and third-party service providers, as well as potential disruptions to our workforce. We are working diligently to minimize the impact.

The pandemic may also impact the cost of capital in the future which may arise from disrupted credit markets and credit rating actions.

Given the rapidly evolving situation, Management continues to analyze the extent of the financial impact, which could be material, depending on the duration of the pandemic. The Company has already taken steps to reduce operating costs as well as its ongoing and future capital program spending. The Company also intends to access its available liquidity reserves to support its operations. The Company will also avail itself of government relief where possible.

Management is working diligently to continue to provide the safe movement of aircraft as an essential service and has taken steps to help protect the safety of its employees.

“The Company was effective in containing costs in the second quarter, mindful of the decline in air traffic we saw earlier in the fiscal year. With global uncertainty in the aviation sector and beyond due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NAV CANADA will continue to adapt and manage our operations accordingly, with a continued focus on safety and providing value to our stakeholders,” said Neil Wilson, President and CEO.

Operating expenses for the second quarter of fiscal 2020 were $387 million as compared to $360 million over the same period in fiscal 2019, mainly due to higher compensation costs, including pension current service costs as well as higher costs for domestic and oceanic space-based surveillance data services.

Net other income and expenses for the second quarter of fiscal 2020 was a net expense of $25 million as compared to a net expense of $27 million over the same period in fiscal 2019.

The Company had a net loss (before net movement in regulatory deferral accounts including rate stabilization) of $90 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2020 as compared to a net loss of $70 million for the second quarter of fiscal 2019.

The Company had negative free cash flow(1) of $24 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2020 due to capital expenditures exceeding cash flows from operations, ending the quarter with cash of $48 million.

The Company is subject to legislation that regulates its approach to setting charges. The timing of the recognition of certain revenue and expenses recovered through charges is recorded through movements in regulatory deferral accounts. The net movement in regulatory deferral accounts for the second quarter of fiscal 2020 was income of $40 million as compared to income of $26 million over the same period in fiscal 2019. This change in regulatory deferrals is primarily due to a $15 million net increase in regulatory deferral adjustments to reflect certain transactions in the periods in which they will be considered for rate setting.

On January 23, 2020, the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) upheld the Company’s revised service charges which had been appealed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) in September 2019. In February 2020, IATA, as supported by Air Canada, filed a Judicial Review application in relation to the CTA’s decision. NAV CANADA, as it did with the original appeal, will vigorously defend the Judicial Review application recently filed by IATA.

The Company’s Financial Statements and Management’s Discussion and Analysis for the three and six months ended February 29, 2020 can be found at: 

NAV CANADA reports February traffic figures

Received directly from NAV CANADA

OTTAWA, April 03, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — NAV CANADA announced today its traffic figures for the month of February 2020 as measured in weighted charging units for enroute, terminal and oceanic air navigation services, in comparison to the last fiscal year.

Traffic in February 2020 decreased by an average of 0.5 per cent compared to the same month in 2019. NAV CANADA’s fiscal year runs from September 1 to August 31.

Weighted charging units represent a traffic measure that reflects the number of flights, aircraft size and distance flown in Canadian airspace.

World ATM Congress Honours Maverick Awards 2020 Winners

Provided by World ATM Congress

ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 23, 2020 /CNW/ — ATCA (the Air Traffic Control Association) and CANSO (the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation) are honoured to announce the winners for the inaugural Maverick Awards presented by World ATM Congress. The Awards — which received over 100 nominations in this first year — showcase the brightest ideas for the future, recognise positive contributions to the environment and conservation, celebrate cooperation between partners and stakeholders, and promote overall excellence in the aviation industry.

The Maverick Awards recognise outstanding achievements in innovation, collaboration, and sustainability in air traffic management (ATM).
The Maverick Awards recognise outstanding achievements in innovation, collaboration, and sustainability in air traffic management (ATM).

The Collaboration Award recognises the importance of effective relationships and partnerships within/across disciplines and sectors to achieve a shared goal.

This year’s winner is NATS, NAV CANADA, and Aireon LLC.
Aireon’s pioneering global, real-time space-based Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) service was implemented by NATS and NAV CANADA, alongside existing capabilities, to deploy new global air traffic control (ATC) separation standards and create a revised concept of operations for the North Atlantic region. On 27 March 2019, the organisations forever transformed the global airspace by safely and successfully transitioning a new air traffic services surveillance capability—space-based ADS-B together with new ATM tools and ATC separation standards—into live service.

The Innovation Award recognises new ideas, technologies, and concepts that challenge current ATM norms with the potential to significantly advance performance, operations, or capabilities.

This year’s winner is Saab Digital Air Traffic Solutions and Scandinavian Mountains Airport.
Saab Digital Air Traffic Solutions and Scandinavian Mountains Airport built a state-of-the-art, green-field airport equipped with digital tower services from a remote tower centre in Sundsvall, Sweden. Controllers are now able to provide services on-demand from a digital tower centre shared by three other airports. With Scandinavian Mountains Airport being a seasonal airport, Saab Digital Air Traffic Solutions’ remote tower concept is a true enabler for efficient, cost-effective ATC service for the region.

The Sustainability Award recognises leaders, initiatives, and organisations working towards reducing aviation’s impact on the environment and making significant contributions to improving the environmental footprint of aviation through ATM.

This year’s winner is ENAIRE.
ENAIRE, in close collaboration with CRIDA, developed ENAIRE’s PERSEO tool, which generates fuel and emissions savings for every flight to, in turn, be analysed to improve the Spanish air route network. In 2018, ENAIRE controllers saved, through ATC direct clearance, about 7 million nautical miles for flights managed in Spanish airspace, preventing the emission of 243,000 tons of CO2.

Due to the cancellation of World ATM Congress 2020, winners of each category were announced earlier today via teleconference by ATCA’s President and CEO Peter F. Dumont and CANSO’s Director General Simon Hocquard. For more information on winners, finalists, judges, and honourable mentions, view the Maverick Awards programme.