OTTAWA – January 19, 2020 – The Government of Canada has taken steps to start supporting recovery efforts in Newfoundland and Labrador, following the significant winter storm that hit the Province on Friday, January 17. Public Safety Canada is working in close collaboration with provincial authorities, the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), and other federal partners in the region to determine how they can best help the Province.
The Government Operations Centre continues to coordinate the federal response effort by ensuring the province has the resources they need.
Last night, the CAF commenced planning and began activating forces. This initial planning work is essential to a coordinated federal response. This planning allows the CAF to deploy to the right locations with the right assets, ensuring that we are in a position to provide the most effective support possible.
The CAF is pre-positioning military aircraft, equipment and personnel so that work can begin in the affected communities as soon as possible.
As part of the coordinated Federal response, potential tasks for the CAF include assisting with snow removal, providing required transportation, and conducting welfare checks on affected residents.
Reserve Force personnel who reside in the communities hit hardest, as well as elements of Joint Task Force Atlantic's Immediate Response Unit, based out of Gagetown, New Brunswick, and Royal Canadian Air Force assets throughout Canada will contribute to the CAF's response to this situation.
Today, the CAF deployed an advance group of approximately 100 personnel from Fredericton. By the end of the day, we can expect to have approximately 150 to 200 personnel on the ground ready to provide support. Additional Search and Rescue assets are being activated which will enhance any search and rescue efforts out of Gander.
More details will be available as the Government of Canada completes planning processes.