Dash 8 joins federal marine surveillance program


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The aircraft will be modified to detect oil spills, monitor ships and whale movements.

OTTAWA — Transport Canada has acquired a new addition to its National Aerial Surveillance Program’s aircraft fleet.

A De Havilland Dash 8 aircraft will undergo modifications to become a maritime patrol aircraft, equipped with specialized maritime surveillance systems.

Transport Canada says the program’s marine surveillance missions include detecting oil spills and other marine pollution, and monitoring ship and endangered whale movements.

Surveillance aircraft are equipped with cameras that covertly monitor vessels from five miles away and at an altitude of 20,000 feet, along with technology that live streams video to personnel on the ground, in offices and to phones.


The government is also building a new National Aerial Surveillance Program Complex in Iqaluit, Nunavut, to support northern operations.


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