UFOs: Declassified Canadian docs show military response to sightings


While the Canadian authorities and military normally do not reply to reviews of unidentified flying objects, there have been some current exceptions, together with instances the place CF-18 fighter jets had been scrambled.

This week, the U.S. intelligence neighborhood is ready to launch a brand new report on unidentified aerial phenomena, or UAP, the time period American officers use for what are extra generally often called unidentified flying objects and UFOs. In the U.S., each the Pentagon and NASA are at the moment researching the subject.

For its half, the Canadian military routinely states that it does “not sometimes examine sightings of unknown or unexplained phenomena exterior the context of investigating credible threats, potential threats, or potential misery within the case of search and rescue.”

  • To be taught extra concerning the June 2021 UAP report from the U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence, click on right here.

Neither does Canada’s transportation division, which operates a web based aviation incident database that is peppered with practically three a long time of surprising reviews from troopers, law enforcement officials, air visitors controllers, and pilots on military, medical, cargo and passenger flights operated by WestJet, Air Canada Express, Porter Airlines, Delta and extra. In most instances, there’s little to no follow-up.

“Reports acquired by Transport Canada are assessed for any quick danger to aviation security and safety or to the Canadian public,” a Transport Canada spokesperson beforehand instructed CTVNews.ca. “Reports of unidentified objects can not often be adopted up on as they’re because the title implies, unidentified.”

Based on the outcomes of eight entry to data requests filed with three federal companies, these are among the exceptions: the unknown menace, misery and security instances the Canadian military and authorities responded to. All reviews come from 2016 to 2020, and all supporting paperwork have been included beneath as a downloadable PDF.

‘EVASIVE ACTION’ – DEC. 22, 2016

An American Airlines flight from London to New York was greater than 300 kilometres south of Goose Bay, Labrador on the night time of Dec. 22, 2016 when it reported “a attainable plane off its left facet and beneath,” in accordance to a publicly obtainable Transport Canada report.

“Air Traffic Control (ATC) and North American Aerospace Defence Command (NORAD) didn’t observe any radar information to verify,” the report continued, referring to the joint Canada-U.S. continental defence group. “Two different plane reported a attainable goal.”

Once categorised “Secret,” digital logbook entries from the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) present extra particulars. They describe the American Airlines flight taking “evasive motion” when an unknown plane appeared “off his left facet.” With “inconclusive” radar information, Canadian CF-18 fighter jets had been scrambled to examine what was dubbed “TOI #2,” or “Track of Interest 2.”

Air power personnel in the meantime instructed the American Airlines flight to “flip 90 levels proper to separate information path from different plane,” since two or extra aerial objects can seem as a single radar blip if too shut collectively. The pilot complied, “and solely a single radar hit was detected behind him.” When the American Airlines aircraft returned to its unique flight plan, the crew “reported seeing an plane with a rotating white mild on his left facet and behind him.”

They weren’t the one ones. Not far-off, close to the Gulf of St. Lawrence, a Lufthansa flight quickly “noticed one thing barely beneath them to the left” whereas a Swiss flight “noticed white mild and rotating beacon.” Boston air visitors controllers “knowledgeable all [aircraft] within the space to search for uncommon exercise.”

Pilots in Canadian fighter jets, nevertheless, had been unable to find the “observe of curiosity” and returned to their house base in Bagotville, Que., after about an hour-and-a-half within the air.

‘UNKNOWN TRACK’ – NOV. 21, 2018

CF-18s from Bagotville, Que., additionally investigated an “unknown observe” detected steadily heading in the direction of North America from the path of Greenland on the morning of Nov. 21, 2018, earlier than it “light in an space of weak radar protection.”

A declassified and previously “Secret” NORAD report from the next day says there was “nothing seen” by the fighter jets, and that the unknown observe was finally “deemed spurious information” brought on by points at a distant NORAD radar set up on the north Atlantic coast in Labrador.


Documents obtained from the RCAF’s 413 Transport and Rescue Squadron in Nova Scotia describe a Cormorant search and rescue helicopter being dispatched to the north shore of Prince Edward Island on the night time of Sept. 3, 2018, to “seek for an unidentified object” after a “involved citizen noticed one thing fall within the water and will neither verify nor deny having an individual on board.”

Clearly labelled “UFO Sighting,” the helicopter crew’s mission report says they scoured the scene for practically an hour, however there was “nothing seen” and “no one wanted any rescue.”


Some of the information obtained by CTVNews.ca are so closely redacted that it is not possible to know what was seen or detected, or how authorities responded.

One RCAF e-mail from Sept. 22, 2020, mentions an “Unknown within the CANR,” which stands for “Canadian NORAD Region” and is Canada’s realm of accountability underneath NORAD. While the e-mail implies one thing unknown was detected above or close to Canada, the remainder of the message is sort of totally redacted in white.

Additional RCAF paperwork obtained by CTVNew.ca recommend military property had been airborne the day prior, on Sept. 21, 2020. NORAD press releases additionally describe U.S. fighter jets responding to Russian bombers and fighters close to Alaska on Sept. 18, 2020, adopted by joint U.S.-Canada NORAD air operations over the Arctic from Sept. 20 to 23, 2020.

The redactions, that are at the moment being challenged, make it clear they defend data pertaining to “worldwide affairs and defence” in addition to “data that was obtained in confidence from… the federal government of a overseas state or an establishment thereof.” Considering Canada’s NORAD ties, the U.S. is a probable candidate.


Most of the UAP reviews in Transport Canada’s aviation incident database solely have a line or two of element. Because two flight attendants had been injured throughout an evasive manoeuvre, a paragraph-long report from 2016 is one thing of an exception.

On the morning of Nov. 14 that yr, a Porter Airlines flight from Ottawa to Toronto’s downtown island airport was over Lake Ontario and approaching its vacation spot when, in accordance to a Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) report, “the flight crew seen an object instantly forward on their flight path” that “appeared to be stable, roughly 5 to 8 toes (1.5 to 2.4 metres) in diameter and formed like an upright doughnut or internal tube.” To keep away from a collision, the “captain overrode the autopilot so as to rapidly descend the plane underneath the item.”

The two unseated flight attendants “had been within the strategy of securing the cabin for arrival” and “acquired minor accidents once they had been thrown into the cabin construction.” No passengers had been harm within the incident, which even made native headlines.

Because of the 2 accidents, the TSB appeared into the case, however was unable to establish the item.

“The description and measurement of the item doesn’t match any recognized industrial or client obtainable unmanned aerial car,” a TSB spokesperson stated on the time.

The unique report Transport Canada printed on the incident merely stated the flight “reported ‘flying by’ an unidentified object, unlikely a balloon.”

TSB emails reviewed by CTVNews.ca show the item might have been picked up by military radar. They additionally recommend there would have been a extra in-depth security investigation had it been positively recognized as a drone.

“It was decided that additional investigation would have little chance of figuring out new security classes that may advance transportation security,” a TSB spokesperson stated in a short e-mail to CTVNews.ca.


A spokesperson from the RCAF and Canadian NORAD Region confirmed that air power property responded to the “unknown observe” and search and recuse instances from 2016 and 2018.

“An ‘unknown observe’ or ‘unknown plane’ (whether or not detected on radar or visually by different plane crew) is precisely that—unknown, and that is the standing of many tracks/plane till they’re recognized or characterised,” the spokesperson defined in an e-mail to CTVNews.ca. “Accordingly, such unknown tracks/plane may very well be many issues, a few of which can represent a reputable menace.”

The search and rescue case, they added, is “common” as crews usually reply to reviews of “perceived misery” like floating life jackets, or adrift and unoccupied boats.

The RCAF and NORAD, nevertheless, didn’t touch upon the intriguing “Unknown within the CANR” doc from September 2020 in a earlier alternate, citing present redactions.

“NORAD has a well-established course of to assess and, when acceptable, reply to potential threats,” the spokesperson added. “For causes of operational safety, we is not going to present specifics on how threats are assessed.”

Transport Canada additionally cautions that reviews present in its aviation incident database, “include preliminary, unconfirmed information which could be topic to change.”

“The Government of Canada takes UAP reviews critically as a result of they will current an actual menace to aviation security, equivalent to an unidentified drone or rogue balloon,” a Transport Canada spokesperson instructed CTVNews.ca. “We will think about how we will enhance the security community, together with taking in reporting from different division sources.”


Since 2021, the U.S. has launched an unclassified intelligence report on UAP, and there has even been a congressional listening to; the primary of its type in over 5 a long time.

“We have detected no emanations inside the UAP activity power that may recommend it is something non-terrestrial in origin,” Scott Bray, the deputy director of U.S. naval intelligence, stated in the course of the May 2022 listening to.

“We know that our service members have encountered unidentified aerial phenomena,” Ronald Moultrie, who oversees the Pentagon’s present UAP analysis workplace, additionally stated. “We’re open to any conclusions that we may encounter.”

While nothing comparable has occurred in Ottawa in recent times, UAP briefings have been held for former defence minister Harjit Sajjan in June 2021 and Transport Minister Omar Alghabra’s workers in May 2022, whereas different members of Parliament have additionally sought data on the once-taboo matter. Canadian military personnel, in the meantime, have been submitting reviews for seven a long time.

CTVNews.ca consulted with two former RCAF pilots and a U.S.-based UAP researcher, who reviewed the paperwork used for this story.

Robert Powell is an Austin, Texas-based engineer and founding board member of the Scientific Coalition for UAP Studies, which is a global thinktank devoted to making use of scientific principals to UAP analysis.

Powell thought of the info for the 2 incidents involving Canadian fighter jets to be considerably contradictory. Regarding the 2016 Porter airways incident, he stated, “This is an effective instance of the security hazards related to UAP, whether or not this one was man-made or not.”

For Powell, the mysterious “Unknown within the CANR” information from 2020 had been probably the most troubling.

“This is the kind of secrecy degree that’s maintained by the U.S. investigations of UAP the place even the form of an object is deemed to be secret and is redacted,” Powell instructed CTVNews.ca. “These are ranges of secrecy that aren’t appropriate with the tenets of a democracy and permit for selective management of data by the federal government.”

Donald “Spike” Kavalench is a just lately retired Transport Canada surveillance pilot who additionally spent greater than twenty years flying for the RCAF. He discovered the primary case, involving the American Airlines flight in 2016, to be significantly fascinating due to the a number of witnesses.

“This case alone justifies a extra concerted effort by Transport Canada and the RCAF to establish who’s infringing on our airspace and placing air travellers and crews in danger,” Kavalench instructed CTVNews.ca from B.C. “The truth our fighter jets didn’t see something isn’t a surprise, it’s a giant, huge sky.”

Kavalench additionally thought the P.E.I. case from 2018 was “not very credible” and believed the Porter airways flight in 2016 might have dodged a balloon, though he doesn’t suppose there’s sufficient proof to make a agency conclusion.

“What is related is that an unknown airborne object induced a industrial airliner to take evasive motion which resulted in accidents to crew members on a industrial flight,” he stated. “Our official response to that appears missing, for my part and is additional justification for a central workplace to correlate and examine these probably hazardous occasions.”

John “Jock” Williams spent greater than twenty years flying fighter jets for the Royal Canadian Air Force, and later labored as a Transport Canada flight security officer. He believes Canadian officers ought to be following up on the credible UAP reviews they obtain, like these from fellow pilots, even when individuals are really simply seeing comparatively peculiar objects like drones and balloons.

“It is clear that the [Canadian Forces] and [Transport Canada] each look upon these occasions simply as potential enforcement issues of no ‘scientific’ import,” Williams instructed CTVNews.ca from Toronto. “I see zero dedication to investigation.”

Obtained by way of eight entry to data requests filed with the Department of National Defence, Transport Canada, and the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, the beneath paperwork define 5 instances from 2016 to 2020 the place Canada responded to reviews of unidentified objects. Click right here for a full display view of the paperwork.


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