Aviation standards a passion for David Olsen

David Olsen’s office in his North Saanich home is full of pictures, plaques, clippings and certificates attesting to his career in aviation

North Saanich resident David Olsen was at one time a contract employee for the International Civil Aviation Organization.

David Olsen’s office in his North Saanich home is full of pictures, plaques, clippings and certificates attesting to his long career in aviation.

Only semi-retired from the field, Olsen still writes for Wings magazine, an industry publication specializing in aircraft, airports and air policy. He continues, as well, to provide aerodrome safety sessions for interested companies.

His wife, Jane, also spent much of her working life taking photos for his work.

Olsen was also at one time a contract employee for the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) based in Montreal, and it was for this reason that the News Review spoke with him.

Olsen, a Transport Canada technical officer at the time, was seconded to ICAO in 1978. He would eventually be named a technical director at the International Air Transport Association, working hand-in-glove with ICAO.

ICAO — the world body that governs aerodrome standards and regulations — has been in the news recently, as Qatar has put the bug in the United Nations’ ear (ICAO’s governing body) to consider moving the organization’s headquarters out of Montreal and to the gulf country. Canada has responded by vigorously defending its hosting of ICAO.

While Olsen said the Canadian government may be too aggressive in its response, he still defends keeping the ICAO HQ in this country.

“ICAO has been in Montreal since 1947,” Olsen said. It’s its one and only home.”

He estimated Qatar is making a move now due to Canada’s changing position on the international scene, paired with the rising prominence of the Arab world as social, economic and industry leaders.

“They are an important player on the world stage,” he said. “Look at where they are and what they do. They established their own airline and got the World Cup in 2022. They have a global reach.”

Canada, however, has an excellent track record as hosts of ICAO — despite the view of this country as having less influence today than it has had in the past.

“The goal remains that we should continue as hosts,” Olsen explained. “The appropriate response is to state the obvious in quiet, measured tones that Canada has genuinely done a good job and is in a position to continue doing a good job.”

He added there is opposition already to any change in where the headquarters of ICAO currently rests — yet that doesn’t mean things might change in the future. Growing economies and societies in the middle east and in Asia could put pressure on where the world’s aviation hub should be.

Olsen is watching with interest what is happening with his former workplace. He said the issue should resonate with people in Greater Victoria because of the prominence of the Victoria International Airport and the aviation-related industries that have grown up around it.

The standards established by ICAO are in place here, he said, as they are around the world, providing consistency and safety to air travellers no matter where they might land.

 

Just Posted

More Peninsula councillors declare their 2018 intentions

Carl Jensen and Chris Graham, both of Central Saanich, have said they will run again.

Woodwynn Farms to be shut down and sold

The rehabilitation program at Woodwynn Farms is being shut down. According to… Continue reading

Whisky society commits to charity donation in wake of whisky raids

Refund of Victoria Whiskey Festival tickets won’t impact charity beneficiaries

Peninsula scientist lauded for Arctic research

Scientist Eddy Carmack, an oceanographer and Central Saanich resident, is in Norway… Continue reading

Victoria housing provider launches crisis prevention program to combat homelessness

Pacifica Housing aims to address challenges before tenants risk evictions

Sidney’s Salish Sea aquarium to close for maintenance

First extended closure for the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea since it opened in 2009

Butchart Gardens is hiring now and paying more

Wages start at $15, job fair Feb. 20

Wind warning back in effect around Vancouver Island

80 km/h winds expected Saturday, Jan. 20, on east coast of Island, 100 km/h on west coast

Cash still needed for Stelly’s Cross Path

MLA Olsen wants more specifics first

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

UPDATE: BC Transit’s handyDart service strike delayed

LRB application by contractor means new strike notice must be issued by union

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

B.C. woman who forged husband’s will gets house arrest

Princeton Judge says Odelle Simmons did not benefit from her crime

Most Read