USAF Gap Fillers - Labrador/Newfoundland

National Archives of Canada

In reply please quote
No 2-02-08 (CTSO)

Department of National Defence
Royal Canadian Air Force

Goose Bay Lab
19 Mar 62

Chief of the Air Staff
Air Force Headquarters
Department of National Defence
Ottawa 4 Ont

Attention: F/L McConnell (CCE/Props)

Takeover Gap-Filer Radar Sites

Further to your CE 136 dated 8 Mar and telecon F/L McConnell 9 Mar, the following information relative to the takeover of Gap-filler radar sites at Spotted Island, Fox Harbour, Cape Makkovik and Cutthroat Island is provided.

This project commenced with receipt of ATCHQ letter 10-7-G10 (CStaffO) 28 Aug 61 at which time discussions were held with local representatives of USAF Goose Air Defence Sector.

A visit was arranged for planning purposes via USAF rented helicopter, to each of the sites concerned, and a recommendation was forwarded under our message T50 dated 14 Sep 61 to provide security via part-time caretaker arrangements.

Subsequent authority was received from ATCHQ and personnel were hired in the area of each; Spotted Island, Makkovik, and Fox Harbour to function as part-time caretakers. Due to the extreme remoteness of Cutthroat Island from inhabited area, no caretaker has been hired at that site.

The sites were vacated by the USAF in mid-October and the actual handing over certificates, copies of which it is understood are now in your possession, were signed by the respective designates, the CO RCAF Stn Goose Bay and the Commander, Goose Air Defence Sector, USAF.

It is reminded that, although the handover certificates have been duly signed by the Commanding Officer of this unit, it has not been possible, since the USAF vacated these sites, to accomplish a stocktaking. The accuracy of the materiel listings therefore cannot be verified. Should this be considered necessary, transportation can be arranged at a cost of $325.00 per hour, via "The Okanagan Helicopter Group" who are locally employed by USAF. Each inventory visit would require approximately two days; and would be most inconvenient to personnel, who would be required to work in unheated buildings under present winter conditions. It may be possible over a period of time to accomplish these visits, depending upon varying conditions of ice, snow, ocean swells, wind etc, via RCAF Goose Bay Otter.

With regard to your query on fuel oil, it is known that some fuel oil is stored in bulk storage tanks while some is in 45-gal drums. However, it is not possible to state, by site, what quantity is stored in each manner. An accurate statement in this regard would also be subject to stocktaking by Goose Bay RCAF personnel.

With the exception of Cutthroat Island, assurance is given that there is no re-distribution of materiel since the RCAF assumed responsibility for these sites. Due to the non-availability of caretaker at Cutthroat Island, it was considered advisable to remove such items which would be attractive to rovers in the area, ie, sealers, trappers and fishermen. This materiel has been kept in custody of this unit. Assurance is given that all items shown on the materiel listings, subject to confirmation as outlined in para 6, is available for disposition as determined by your HQ.

(P Woodside)S/L
for CO RCAF Stn Goose Bay