Forest service road radio procedures are now changing

Radio communication protocols for forest service roads in the Thompson Rivers Forest District

Radio communication protocols for forest service roads in the Thompson Rivers Forest District are changing, according to a letter from district manager Rick Sommer to road users.

“It is recommended that all users exercise additional caution when travelling on resource roads during the transition period,” he wrote.

The changes are part of a process to standardize resource road communication protocols across the province.

“Previously, mobile radio communications have been highly variable across the province with users required to know the unwritten local protocols,” Sommer wrote.

“Heavy radio traffic volume caused frequent overlapping calls and interference, resulting in reduced safety of radio communication systems.”

The district manager noted that, up until now, truckers and other road users have needed to reprogram their radios to use local radio channels as they moved around to different roads.

The changes include implementing standardized radio communication signage, a set of dedicated resource road radio channels, and standardized call procedures.

The standardization process began with pilot projects on Vancouver Island, the Sunshine Coast and the South Peace.

The transition is now being expanded into Thompson Rivers, Cascades, Okanagan Shuswap and Quesnel Resource Districts in the southern Interior.

Full implementation is planned for Monday, May 4.

Eventually, the whole province will be covered.

Resource road radio users are expected to have the 40 resource road radio channels pre-programmed into their radios before the May 4 deadline.

Sommer recommended that road users retain the current radio frequencies until they are no longer required.

“All road users are reminded that forest service roads and the majority of resource roads are not radio-controlled but they are radio-assisted, and should drive safely according to the road conditions and weather,” the district manager said.

Further information about the transition can be obtained by calling the Thompson Rivers Forest District at 250-371-6500 or Industry Canada at 1-800-667-3780.