Members of the Canadian Armed Forces — along with resources and equipment — are in Alberta to help with the national COVID-19 response, if needed.
Three C-130 Hercules transport aircraft were seen at the Calgary International Airport Wednesday morning. One left at around 8:30 a.m.
A spokesperson for National Defence told Global News that while there is no current request for assistance from the Prairie provinces, “prudent contingency planning and preparations are ongoing across Canada to ensure that our personnel, resources and equipment are ready and that we are prepared to respond quickly and effectively to assist in the national COVID-19 response, in support of civil authorities, if asked.”
Public Safety Canada is the lead in coordinating a federal emergency response and the armed forces “stand ready to offer assistance in support of civilian authorities during any crisis in Canada, when requested by the government.”
The Canadian Rangers have been activated in four First Nations in the prairie provinces and one in Ontario, “following provincial requests for Canadian Armed Forces assistance,” she explained.
Operation LASER is described as the military’s “response to a worldwide pandemic situation.” In four phases, CAF personnel and the department of National Defence will help prepare, alert, respond and restore during a pandemic crisis.
The DND statement said: “The CAF continues to work closely with Public Safety and our federal, provincial, territorial, municipal and Indigenous partners to align the provision of possible CAF military support and related capabilities with the overall government COVID-19 response.”
More to come…
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