Cow Bay provides training ground for Air Force helicopters

While not unusual to see a helicopter hovering around Cowichan Bay, lately area residents may be seeing a lot more military action

While not unusual to see the occasional helicopter hovering around Cowichan Bay, lately area residents may be seeing a lot more military action in the skies above — but there’s no cause for concern.

According to the Department of National Defence/Royal Canadian Air Force, 443 Maritime Helicopter Squadron is doing flight operations in and around Cowichan Bay upwards of three times a day through Friday, Dec. 4.

“During the conduct of these operations, the public will notice a short-term increase in noise levels in the vicinity of Cowichan Bay as the helicopters manoeuvre in and out of the area,” said a press release.

Major Dale Arndt said depending on the exercise, any given session could last between a few minutes and a couple of hours.

Arndt noted the training is relatively standard, but the location is not.

“It’s really the stuff we do on a regular basis, it’s just in a different location for the next couple of weeks,” he said.

Based at the Victoria Airport, the unit usually trains south of Victoria but their space was being used by another squadron that had it booked this time around.

“Normally we do most of our training work south of Victoria and when we require a place to do hoisting and slinging work we go to Albert Head,” Arndt explained. “Unfortunately for us there’s another military user who is doing an exercise there for the next couple of weeks so we’ve been displaced.”

Westcan has agreed the group can use its property in Cowichan Bay.

The choppers could be in the area anytime weekdays between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Just Posted

VIDEO: It’s Hometown Hockey time in Cowichan!

See our videos and pictures by our reporters from the big event at The Stick.

Column: Trump dangerous to Cowichan Valley’s economy

The tentacles of the controversial American president reach even into the Cowichan Valley.

Column David Suzuki: Large dams fail on climate change and Indigenous rights

Brazil has flooded large swaths of the Amazon for hydro dams

Heavy snowfall closes Mount Washington for the day

Road to ski resort deemed unsafe, “high avalanche danger”

Capture the Rain: Underground cistern helps rural couple expand gardens

Sandy McPherson and Alan Philip are continually working towards low-impact living.

VIDEO: It’s Hometown Hockey time in Cowichan!

See our videos and pictures by our reporters from the big event at The Stick.

Plan your Hometown Hockey weekend

Find your favourites on the Hometown Hockey schedule

Hometown Hockey: Cowichan Capitals events

On Jan. 20 there will be special features during the game for Hometown Hockey

Coming up in Cowichan: Rain workshop, Joseph Mairs Memorial, timely film

Participants are encouraged to bring their roof dimensions

Philadelphia Eagles headed to Super Bowl

After routing the Minnesota Vikings 38-7, they will face Tom Brady and the New England Patriots

VIDEO: Dramatic video shows return of rescued B.C. snowboarders

Two snowboarders were rescued near Rossland, B.C. on Sunday after being lost overnight.

Tom Brady leads Patriots back to Super Bowl, top Jaguars 24-20

New England to face winner of Sunday night’s game between Minnesota and Philadelphia on Feb. 4

Vessel washed ashore in Campbell River during last night’s storm

A vessel appears to have gotten loose and washed to shore on… Continue reading

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Most Read