Emergency flare training at sandpits
Yellowknife, N.W.T. - The sky around the Yellowknife Sandpits was alight the morning of May 14, but for a very good reason.
Around 30 personnel from 440 Squadron were taking part in emergency flare training, which is an annual exercise designed to test their emergency preparedness.
440 Squadron's commanding officer, Lieutenant-Colonel Desmond Brophy, said the training is mandatory because the flare is a pyrotechnic device and needs to be handled properly.
"One has to make sure that you are pointing it in the correct direction and handling it appropriately to make sure that you had the training you needed to be able to, if you heard a rescue type aircraft, ... be able to activate the emergency signaling devices: either the smoke in the day time or the flairs at night or in the day," said Brophy.
Because the flares were being shot into the sky, Brophy said measures were taken by his staff to ensure no aircraft in the area would be in danger.
"They've liaised very closely with the airport authority. We generated what we call in the business a notam, a Notice to Airmen," he said.
Brophy said the entire exercise took about 20 minutes to complete and air traffic was back to normal a short time later.
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