; Date: Wed Jun 02 2021
As UFO sightings go, this one is fairly tame. The airplane, identified only as VNO2, was flying south into Thompson Manitoba, where there is a small airport. The coordinates, 55 54N, 097 54W, put the airplane near aptly named Mystery Lake. The airplane was flying at night with the sighting occurring for 3 minutes at 1130z-1133z, which probably translates to mid-evening local time. They were flying at 7500 foot altitude, at a speed of 230 knots, when the occupants saw (visually) a light moving in parallel with their airplane. The report concludes the light was probably another aircraft.
The question is, what happens to a report like this. Who evaluates these reports? If there are frequent sightings of unexplained aircraft, but nobody ever reports it, no database is kept, etc, then how can we know if there is a danger?
The initial report was taken by the Winnipeg Air Control Centre (ACC). In Canada, the ACC's are run by a private corporation, NAV Canada, rather than a government agency.
Winnipeg ACC wrote what's called a No Threat CIRVIS Report and sent it to the 21 Aerospace Control and Warning Squadron. This unit is part of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF), and is based at the Canadian Forces Base, North Bay (CFB North Bay), near North Bay Ontario. It is an air defense unit that's part of Canada's NORAD system. NORAD, as is widely known, is a joint project of Canada and the USA which defends against possible nuclear attack from Russia.
What does No Threat CIRVIS Report mean?
CIRVIS, is known as CIRVIS stands for Communication Instructions for Reporting Vital Intelligence Sightings. It is a long-standing reporting system in Canada, and seemingly also in the USA, established by JANAP 146 (see Resources for understanding Unidentified Aerial Phenomena and Unidentified Flying Objects (UFO)). CIRVIS provides a uniform system for reporting of vital intelligence sightings and passing of these intelligence reports to appropriate military authorities.
The scope of CIRVIS reporting is:
- Single aircraft or formations of aircraft which appear to be directed against the United States or Canada or their forces.
- Unidentified flying objects.
- Hostile or unidentified submarines.
- Hostile or unidentified group or groups of military surface vessels.
- Individual surface vessels, submarines, or aircraft of unconventional design, or engaged in suspicious activity or observed in an unusual location or following an unusual course.
- Unlisted airfields or facilities, weather stations, or air navigation aids.
- Any unexplained or unusual activity which may indicate a possible attack against or through Canada or the United States, including the presence of any unidentified or other suspicious ground parties in the Polar region or other remote or sparsely populated areas.
Clearly most of the scope is the threat of attack from another nation. Thinking of the geographical arrangement, the only nation of interest was at the time the USSR and is now known as Russia. While both Greenland and Iceland border the area covered by NORAD, neither are a threat to Canada or the USA. In any case, a No Threat CIRVIS Report is therefore an event which is not deemed threatening.
But, notice that the scope includes Unidentified flying objects.
The rest of JANAP 146 documents what sounds like a reasonable system of collecting such reports, making sure that both the USA and Canadian forces are on the same page with these reports, and analyzing them for potential threats.
Nowhere do these instructions convey an importance on analyzing UFO sightings.
One destination for CIRVIS reports is with [Ufology Research[( http://survey.canadianuforeport.com/)] (formerly Ufology Research of Manitoba). This group has been collecting and analyzing UFO reports in Canada for over 32 years.
The 2020 report says there were 1,243 UFO sightings recorded in Canada in 2020. That's the highest number since their reporting system began in 1989. About 13 percent of those reports were classified as unexplained. Sources for cases in the report are:
- UFO groups and organizations: AQU, AUFOSG, GARPAN, KBCCUFO, MUFON, NUFORC, TESA, UFOBC, Ufology Research, UFOSNW
- Government sources: Transport Canada, CIRVIS reports
- Social media: Facebook, Reddit, Twitter, Youtube
- And independent UFO researchers such as Dee McCaulley
The 2020 report also indicates the incident described above is the most common type. Namely, it was a Nocturnal Light seen in the evening. The report notes that any light in the sky is more visible after the sun goes down, and that most people are sleeping after midnight. Therefore, a "strange light in the sky" is more likely to be witnessed in the evening.