Provincial opposition politicians are upset after photos showing a Search and Rescue helicopter resting on a shore while people appear to be fishing became public.
NDP MHA and emergency services critic George Murphy called the trip “a stupid decision” in a news release that stated the trip was apparently used as a reward for members of 444 Squadron at Goose Bay following their completion of maintenance and inspection work on a helicopter returning from Jamaica.
“I am all in favour of rewarding workers for doing a good job,” said Murphy, “but surely to goodness the commander could have found some other way than by using a military helicopter to take them on a fishing trip,” he said.
Liberal Torngat Mountains MHA Randy Edmunds said he respects the ned to reward military personnel, but objected to the use of the helicopter.
“I am appalled that DND would continue to use search and rescue equipment for pleasure in light of the recent controversy over search and rescue capability in Labrador,” he said. “The people of Labrador have been lobbying hard for improved search and rescue capacity in Labrador since the Burton Winters tragedy, and to have them exposed to this abuse of search and rescue helicopters is an outright insult to the people.”