• Thanks for stopping by. Logging in to a registered account will remove all generic ads. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

The Closing of CFB Chilliwack & No Regular Force Army Battalions in BC?!

Brad Sallows

Army.ca Fixture
Reaction score
3,218
Points
1,010
Maybe the best CF-provided insurance we have in lower mainland BC right now is the air force: the reserve airfield engineering flight (or is it a squadron?) based in Abbotsford.  I have no idea what the manning or equipment of the unit is.  However, with the right mix of skills and equipment, it could mean there is a unit in place to fix up an airfield which should be relatively "survivable" to start with.  The AEF tidies up, and the gear begins flying in...
 
L

Limpy

Guest
Funny you mention the Air Field Engineers Brad. My old school bus driver just last year retired from that Flight. Yes it is a flight. The rest of the Sqd. is in Cold Lake (6th Air Fld. Eng. I think). This bus driver was reg army for 28 yrs. 14 as a platoon Sgt. if  remember. by the way exactly what good is Esquimalt under water? Besides I think most personnel at Esquimalt are always away on ships?
 

McG

Army.ca Legend
Reaction score
1,982
Points
1,160
The Naval Construction Troop is shore based.
 

Spr.Earl

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
410
Limpy said:
Does anyone think the gains of closing CFB Chilliwack outweigh the loss?

There were no gain's but major loss' as it left the Corp with a School that can train only 4 to 5 month's a year due to the weather down East where as in the Wack you could train and teach all year round,if you wanted cold weather all's we had to do was go up a few 100 mtrs and voila snow plus for winter Ex's . we just had to drive for a few hours and we had it up in the Chilcoten just west of Billy's Pond.

 

yot

Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
If BC doesn't need a Reg F Base, then why does it need RCMP?!

Edmonton can send the RCMP to BC. (just my thought)
 

MJP

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
786
Points
1,040
Wow that makes absolutely no sense yot....mind explaining the rationale/thought process behind that one?
 

Trimmen

Guest
Reaction score
0
Points
60
During the 80's and the 90's military spending cuts lead to the decommission of a BC based Reg Force Army Battalion (as I'm sure all of you know). 
With the current restructuring and generalised boosting of the CF, I'm curious to know about the possibility and/or plausibility of the reformation of a BC based Battalion?
 

vonGarvin

Army.ca Legend
Reaction score
20
Points
430
That so-called "decommissioning" of the BC Reg Force Battalion was actually a move from Work Point Barracks in Esquimalt to Edmonton of the 3rd Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, who are ANYTHING but "decommisionned".  They served with great honour in Afghanistan in 2002, and continue to serve.
 

Trimmen

Guest
Reaction score
0
Points
60
So the 3rd battalion (3PPCLI) was "moved" to Edmonton.......The former Chilliwack BC base was bulldozed and is currently being transformed into a sub division.
But let me get this straight, 1 Battalion in New-Brundswick, 3 in Quebec, 2 in Ontario, 1 in Manitoba (for some reason), 2 in Edmonton, and a wopping 0 in BC.
BC is one of the largest coastlines in the world, completely isolated geographically from the rest of Canada, has the 2nd fastest growing Population base in Canada and has, by far, the mildest climate in Canada. I'm no strategist but I would think that having a battalion in BC might make some sense.
 

Michael OLeary

Army.ca Fixture
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
2
Points
430
Trimmen said:
So the 3rd battalion (3PPCLI) was "moved" to Edmonton.......The former Chilliwack BC base was bulldozed and is currently being transformed into a sub division.
But let me get this straight, 1 Battalion in New-Brundswick, 3 in Quebec, 2 in Ontario, 1 in Manitoba (for some reason), 2 in Edmonton, and a wopping 0 in BC.
BC is one of the largest coastlines in the world, completely isolated geographically from the rest of Canada, has the 2nd fastest growing Population base in Canada and has, by far, the mildest climate in Canada. I'm no strategist but I would think that having a battalion in BC might make some sense.

To get anywhere with this argument, first you'll actually have to define the threat.
 

tabernac

Sr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
If anything this threat would be sea-borne, and the proposed Marine Commando Regiment effectively nullifies the need for a battalion to guard against said threats.
 

Michael OLeary

Army.ca Fixture
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
2
Points
430
cheeky_monkey, here's your sign:

I'm no strategist

Your suggestion lacks the necessary detail and sufficient analysis to state that a battalion sized organization simply stationed on the coast is sufficient to guard against a conceivable "sea-borne" threat.
 

McG

Army.ca Legend
Reaction score
1,982
Points
1,160
Trimmen said:
I'm no strategist but I would think that having a battalion in BC might make some sense.
Why?  Why does BC need a battalion?  What is the capability that is missing?  Do you think the importance of a province is measured by the number of infantry battalions within it?  What of all the other types of army (and non-army) units?  To me, it seems that you are talking about prestige when comparing numbers of battalions without talking about the need.

cheeky_monkey said:
If anything this threat would be sea-borne, and the proposed Marine Commando Regiment effectively nullifies the need for a battalion to guard against said threats.
?  This is silly.  Are you suggesting that BC's requirement for an infantry battalion is to defend against an amphibious invasion?  And you believe that the nonexistent marine commando unit will be interchangeable with a battalion?
 

Gayson

Full Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
I have to agree.

BC has a very large coastline and a large population.

I don't believe Vancouver is going to get attacked anytime soon, but I think it makes sense to have a battalion there.  If Canada were to ever be attacked, it's coasts would provide a good means to land troops.

At the same time however, it must cost more money to have many units spread out over the country versus having multiple units sharing one area.  I'm sure whatever the reason was for moving the PPCLI made sense at the time.

 

Ex-Dragoon

Army.ca Fixture
Reaction score
1
Points
430
By your arguments and logic then we should have a Regular Force Bn in Nfld, NS and each of the 3 Northern Territories. What about coastal provinces without naval bases? Should each of them get a frigate or two? Provinces without fighter squadrons? Provinces without armour.... The list can go on and on if you really want it to....See where I am going with this?
 

career_radio-checker

Full Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
Ok I just wrote a long diatribe and had it deleted by my stupid pop-up blocker  :mad:

In short, the threat comes from natural disasters. If When the 'BIG ONE' comes, we can expect major damage to roads, water lines, gas lines, and power grids. Also look at this picture:
http://maps.google.ca/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=vancouver+bc&ie=UTF8&z=10&ll=49.126915,-123.230896&spn=0.391817,1.376038&t=k&om=1

Much of Vancouver is built on a flood plain which will liquify when the earth starts shaking. And you see all that mud at the mouth of the Fraser River? Geologists predict that will cause a giant tsunami if it ever had an under water landslide. This would put the Vancouver international airport out of action and cause many casualties.

When the call goes out for the military, the closest heavy logistics is in Edmonton and will have to come through the mountain roads which will undoubtebly be covered with landslides. Those first 72 hours are crucial and Vancouver would best be served by having an army base closer than Edmonton, and idealy an engineer base with specialized equipment.
 

Donut

Sr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
Why?  So that equipment, and personnel, can be victims of the disaster, instead of responding to it?  So they can be isolated in Chilliwack, with no means of resupply?  With no means to get anybody to anywhere to do any good?

Even when 1 CER was located in Chilliwack, along with CFSME, there wasn't enough MGB, Bailey, Acrow, or MR to get across the Vedder, the Chilliwack River, the Fraser River.... etc.  In short, they aren't able to get themselves the 100 km from CWac to Vancouver.

Those who think that having 800-odd soldiers in the middle of the disaster zone is going to make any difference beyond helping those people in the immediate vicinity of the base are deluding themselves.

I would suggest the best bet for BC after the big one is going to come from 192 AEF located at the Abbotsford Airport, a unit that specializes in Airfield Engineering, and may be in a position to restore operations at an airport or two to get the rest of the relief forces in. 

You are right in that the first 72 hrs will be crucial, but it will be the individuals and families, well prepared and equipped to look after themselves, without any outside support, that will reduce the degree of the calamity.  You saw the footage of Katrina?  Stock up now, cache some food, water and other necessities, have a plan, and think ahead.

As for the "Sea Borne Threat", that's what Maritime Patrol AC are for, and I don't believe they're going away any time soon.

My 2 shekels,

DF
 

Neill McKay

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
360
Trimmen said:
So the 3rd battalion (3PPCLI) was "moved" to Edmonton.......The former Chilliwack BC base was bulldozed and is currently being transformed into a sub division.
But let me get this straight, 1 Battalion in New-Brundswick, 3 in Quebec, 2 in Ontario, 1 in Manitoba (for some reason), 2 in Edmonton, and a wopping 0 in BC.
BC is one of the largest coastlines in the world, completely isolated geographically from the rest of Canada, has the 2nd fastest growing Population base in Canada and has, by far, the mildest climate in Canada. I'm no strategist but I would think that having a battalion in BC might make some sense.

There is, though, a little less than half of the navy's fleet in BC.  If you're worried about the length of coastline, that's something to be considered.

Another thing to consider would be the militia -- does it have a strong presence in BC?
 
Top