Intervention, observation ou réponse de l'intimé / Intervention, comment or answer by respondent

Date reçu / Date Arrived: 2022-09-17

Numéro de processus public / Public Process Number: 2022-147
Numéro d'intervention / Intervention Number: 34
Demande(s) / Application(s):
Cas / Case: 304321

Demande à comparaître à l'audience publique / Request to appear at the public hearing: Non/No
Intimé / Respondent: Non/No

Commentaire / Comment
I work in Northwestern BC (Highway 37) in a campground with no publicly accessible forms of communication. To the south of us the closest cell phone coverage is over 600km and to the North over 100km away. The only internet available is satellite which became increasingly unreliable this past summer and eventually stopped working altogether, we were told by the provider (Galaxy) that there was nothing they could do to re-establish connection and that the signal was failing and the satellite would be de-commissioned, with no alternative available.

The closest public payphone is 15 minutes south of us however Northwestel has said they will not maintain/repair this phone because it is vandalized regularly. During the busy season it is not unusual for us to have 150+ people a day visit/stay at the campground and the only reliable communication we had this year was our personal Zoleo Satellite communicator. As a result of the lack of publicly accessible communication, we’ve seen and had to assist in the the following situations, some of which took place a considerable distance from our location but we were the first place that people could report too :
• Responding to accidents/injuries
• Reporting serious vehicle incidents/collisions on the highway
• Reporting wildfires
• Reporting dangerous road conditions (e.g. trees fallen across road, flooding)
• Providing assistance to women in unsafe domestic situations
• Assisting RCMP with missing person inquiries that families have filed because they haven’t heard from relatives travelling the highway, who didn’t realize there would not be a way to maintain regular contact

From a business perspective we were unable to access updated information from databases we are required to connect to and could not process credit card payments as the internet connection was too unstable to use with our point of sale system. We also could not access road reports, wildfire updates or any other news.

The lack of availability of any communication options is a serious public safety issue and limits economic growth in the region.

I would also like to note that I was only able to contribute to this survey because I am no longer in the north where a lack of access to any communication systems was an insurmountable barrier to participation.

Copie envoyée au demandeur et à tout autre intimé si applicable / Copy sent to applicant and to any respondent if applicable: Non/No

Information du client / Client information

Nom / Name: Sierre Allison
Titre / Title:
Au nom de la compagnie / On behalf of company:
Adresse courriel / E-mail address:
Adresse postale / Address: Highway 37, BC, Canada
Code postal / Postal code: V0C 1L0
Téléphone / Telephone: 250-832-6765
Facsimilé / Fax: