Tuesday, May 30, 2023

What's Going On

Meet your Airport Operations Control (AOC) Unit
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Meet your Airport Operations Control (AOC) Unit

Photo from (left to right): Ashley Goundar was a Facility Maintenance Specialist at YYC and previously an EMT and Samantha Robb came to us from AHS EMS dispatch

If you’ve pressed option 5 when calling the Integrated Operations Centre (IOC), you’ve likely spoken to one or several of our nine Airport Operations Specialists. We’re going to help put faces to names and descriptions to roles. Here we go!

What does an Airport Operations Control (AOC) Specialist do? 

  • Provide campus-wide support for ‘day of’ (see definition below) maintenance, technology and operational needs as requested by the airport community via the Integrated Operations Centre (IOC).
  • Proactively monitor operations and identify, mitigate risks that may impact airport customers or stakeholder or negatively impact The Authority’s reputation.

Like a central nervous system, AOC Specialists are receptors of information that needs to be understood, deciphered, and transmitted to the appropriate stakeholders and airport partners.  In addition to taking calls and dispatching the appropriate teams based on the nature of each call received into the IOC, there are various building and life safety systems that need to be monitored to ensure a safe, secure and efficient operational environment at YYC.

Some of the systems monitored include:

  • Fire alarm
  • Crash alarm
  • Electrical system SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition)
  • Baggage system SCADA
  • Building Management System
  • Weather and Wind
  • Lightning detection
  • Deicing

Depending on the information received by these systems, the AOC team then dispatches the appropriate resources, shares this information and how it may impact operations with the YYC community via xMatters.

Another major function of the AOC role is the dispatching and coordination of emergency response to any incident occurring in the terminal, on the airfield, on YYC roadways, or on inbound aircraft to YYC.

Fun Fact:

During an average shift in a peak period, the AOC’s take approximately 513 radio and phone calls a day!

Ever feel like we may be rushing you off the phone? 

Please don’t take it personally as it is not intentional. During busy periods, we could be juggling multiple phone requests simultaneously while also monitoring radio calls, dispatching or dealing with multiple emergencies.

What is day-of operations?

Anything that would need attention on the day that it is reported. The AOC Unit takes ‘day of’ facilities maintenance and IT requests, and emergencies and immediate operational concerns. If you need to flag something quickly, please send an email with request details to aoc@yyc.com as the maintenance base email no longer exists.

Outside of day-of operations

If an item requires planning with multiple stakeholders or requires a permit, that means it’s outside of ‘day-of’.

Photo: Ashley Sharkey, once part of YYC’s baggage team, is now an AOC Specialist

Photo: Tammy Ferguson came to us after over 20 years in WestJet’s Operations Control Centre

Photo: Ford Canillo is a power engineer who used to work at the Children’s Hospital and started at YYC as a Facility Maintenance Coordinator

Photo: Samantha Johnson is a former Security Operations Centre (SOC) operator and security escort

Photo: Samson Beddall transitioned from the Security Operations Centre (SOC) as an operator

Photo: Amber Thomas joined YYC with 20 years of experience in WestJet’s Operations Control Centre

Photo: Carolina Herrera Meza joined this year from Air Canada’s Jazz operations

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