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Nav Canada’s RCO Changes - Find Your Frequency
No more 126.7 monitoring
August 12, 2014 - The following information was communicated to us regarding Remote Communications Outlet services by Nav Canada.
The 126.7 frequency is no longer monitored by the Flight Information Centres (FICs), with the exception of Gore Bay. When and if required, the FIC can access and use 126.7 to broadcast urgent PIREPs and SIGMETs and conduct communication searches for overdue aircraft.
All remaining RCO changes were planned to be completed July 24, 2014. To contact an FIC, pilots must know the discrete RCO frequency.
The purpose of this is to keep the airwaves uncluttered. You must now use your local RCO frequency, and FICs will no longer respond if you call them on 126.7. To find that frequency, consult your local RCO map on Nav Canada’s website. For example, there are 24 different RCOs in Ontario, and adjacent ones use different frequencies to avoid overlap. Get to know the frequencies used along your routes. You can no longer depend on being told what frequency to change to.
En-route pilot-to-pilot communications not intended for the general traffic should use 122.75 to keep 126.7 clear, but at all other times 126.7 should be monitored.
The following is from Nav Canada’s informational brochure on the changes:
“Five frequencies dedicated to FISE (122.375 MHz, 123.275 MHz, 123.375 MHz, 123.475 MHz, and 123.55 MHz) will be established at most RCO locations. Note that radios do not need to display to three decimals to use these new frequencies. For instance, 123.275 = 123.27 (See TC AIM—COM 5.3).
“RCOs will be sited approximately 220 nautical miles apart, along airways, air routes, and VFR flyways. The 220-nm separation guideline was based on a requirement for a pilot to get a weather information update once an hour while flying an aircraft at 3,000 feet above ground at 120 knots. In mountainous areas, spacing of RCOs will be closer in order to meet coverage requirements for VFR flyways in valleys. In areas of high demand, RCOs will be established as required.”