View Royal Mono-Pole Installation

Loud and Clear About Public Safety

TO IMPROVE EMERGENCY COMMUNICATIONS COVERAGE, A COMMUNICATIONS MONO-POLE
IS PROPOSED TO BE INSTALLED AT THE FIRE HALL.

CREST is currently upgrading its’ fourteen-year-old emergency communications technology. We are migrating the existing system to a new P25 digital system — the preferred technology for emergency responders across North America.

“CREST’s new technology plan is an important step forward for all emergency responders and for our citizens. It is expected to improve public safety communications for our officers and firefighters by providing clearer audio with less interference, noise suppression, increased capacity, and improved coverage and security. “The mono-pole installation at 333 Island Hwy is one of over twenty new transmission sites throughout the Capital Region and is essential for the effectiveness of our operations and emergency services in the Town of View Royal.”

Insp. L. Chomyn, Commanding Officer I/C, RCMP, Westshore Detachment
Paul Hurst, Fire Chief, View Royal Fire Rescue

Why View Royal?

Currently, there are gaps in emergency coverage in View Royal. The mono-pole will address this issue and strengthen public safety. Emergency responders – fire, police and ambulance – are fully supportive of having this mono-pole installed as it will enable them to better serve and protect residents throughout the community.

Where on the Fire Hall site is this going?

Artist renderings of the proposed new monopole from various locations.

Why can’t you install on top of a building?

In Victoria’s urban core, we are installing five transmission sites on top of buildings to help address the current challenges that exist for coverage for first responders, particularly within buildings. We are installing on the top of buildings because there are no hilltops. In View Royal, a high point of land happens to be at the back of the Fire Hall. This is the ideal location. The goal across the Capital Regional District is to strengthen public and responder safety, and this technology upgrade will ensure CREST meets this goal.

What exactly is being installed at the Fire Hall?

A critical piece of public safety infrastructure called a communications mono-pole is proposed to be erected at the Fire Hall. This is very similar to the mono-pole that is in Highrock Park in Esquimalt.

Can you describe the communications mono-pole?

The communications mono-pole is 154 ft / 47 m high with a diameter of 3.4 ft / 1m. It will be set into a concrete pad and bolted into the ground. The total footprint of the installation is approximately 50 sq ft / 4.6 sq m. Supporting infrastructure will be contained in an 8 ft x 6 ft / 2.4 m x 1.8 m container adjacent to the installation.

How long will it take to install this?

Preparation for the installation of the mono-pole will take place over three weeks. The installation of the mono-pole base structure itself will take place over several days.

What about noise emitted from the mono-pole and related infrastructure?

The equipment shelter will utilize a small fan for cooling. During a prolonged power outage, a backup generator could be deployed.

Is there a public health risk with this mono-pole?

Health Canada has a guideline known as Safety Code 6 which recommends limits for safe human exposure to radio frequency (RF) electromagnetic energy — the kind of energy given off by various electronic devices such as cell phones and Wi-Fi, as well as broadcasting and cell phone towers. The limits established in Safety Code 6 incorporate large safety margins to provide a significant level of protection for all Canadians, including those working near RF sources.

The mono-pole is well within the Safety Code 6 guidelines. Emissions are less than broadcasting towers and cell phone towers. Health Canada scientists monitor the scientific literature on this issue on an ongoing basis. Safety Code 6 is reviewed on a regular basis to verify that the guideline provides protection against all known potentially harmful health effects.

When will it be installed?

CREST plans to prepare for the installation of the mono-pole in 2018.

Will the mono-pole affect other communications services (i.e. cell phone or TV services)?

No.

How much is this going to cost residents of View Royal?

This technology upgrade is part of a regional public safety operation managed by CREST. Costs are borne by all jurisdictions in the CRD.

Is there a community information meeting?

Yes, CREST will be holding a Community Information meeting on Wednesday May 2nd 6:00 – 8:00 pm at the Fire Hall – 333 Island Highway. Everyone is welcome!