CFB Valcartier
Canadian Forces Base Valcartier is a Canadian Forces Base
Canadian Forces base
A Canadian Forces Base or CFB is a military installation of the Canadian Forces. For a facility to qualify as a Canadian Forces Base, it must station one or more major units .Minor installations are named Canadian Forces Station or CFS A Canadian Forces Base or CFB (French Base des forces...

 located in the municipality of Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier
Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier, Quebec
Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier is a municipality in the Capitale-Nationale region of Quebec, Canada, located in the Jacques-Cartier River valley. It is home to the Canadian Forces Base Valcartier since World War I.-History:...

, approximately 25 km (15.5 mi) north of Quebec City
Quebec City
Quebec , also Québec, Quebec City or Québec City is the capital of the Canadian province of Quebec and is located within the Capitale-Nationale region. It is the second most populous city in Quebec after Montreal, which is about to the southwest...

. It is home to the 5th Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group
5 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group
5 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group is a Canadian Forces brigade group that is part of Land Forces Quebec Area of the Canadian army. It is based at CFB Valcartier, near Quebec City in Quebec, Canada...



CFB Valcartier was originally erected as a military training camp
Military camp
A military camp or bivouac is a semi-permanent facility for the lodging of an army. Camps are erected when a military force travels away from a major installation or fort during training or operations, and often have the form of large campsites. In the Roman era the military camp had highly...

 in August 1914 as part of the mobilization of the Canadian Expeditionary Force
Canadian Expeditionary Force
The Canadian Expeditionary Force was the designation of the field force created by Canada for service overseas in the First World War. Units of the C.E.F. were divided into field formation in France, where they were organized first into separate divisions and later joined together into a single...

 at the onset of World War I. The site was also used as an internment camp
Internment is the imprisonment or confinement of people, commonly in large groups, without trial. The Oxford English Dictionary gives the meaning as: "The action of 'interning'; confinement within the limits of a country or place." Most modern usage is about individuals, and there is a distinction...

 for "enemy aliens", mainly eastern Europeans. The name Valcartier comes from the town of Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier, of which a large section was expropriated in order to create the military training camp. Due to its proximity to the Port of Quebec
Port of Quebec
The Port of Quebec is an inland port located in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. It is the oldest port in Canada, and the second largest in Quebec after the Port of Montreal.-History:...

, Valcartier became the largest military camp on Canadian soil, including some 32,000 men and 8,000 horses.

In 1968, after unification
Unification of the Canadian Forces
Unification of the Canadian Forces took place in 1968 when the Royal Canadian Navy, Canadian Army, and Royal Canadian Air Force were merged to form the Canadian Armed Forces....

 of the Canadian Forces
Canadian Forces
The Canadian Forces , officially the Canadian Armed Forces , are the unified armed forces of Canada, as constituted by the National Defence Act, which states: "The Canadian Forces are the armed forces of Her Majesty raised by Canada and consist of one Service called the Canadian Armed Forces."...

, the title 5 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group was assigned to the brigade group established in CFB Valcartier.

Military presence

Currently, Valcartier Garrison is home to the 5th Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group.

The following units are stationed at Valcartier:
  • Headquarters and Signals Squadron (Quartier général et escadron de transmissions)
  • 12e Régiment blindé du Canada
    12e Régiment blindé du Canada
    The 12e Régiment blindé du Canada is a Canadian Forces armoured regiment based in CFB Valcartier, on the outskirts of Quebec City...

     (12 RBC)
  • 1 Battalion, Royal 22e Régiment
    Royal 22e Régiment
    The Royal 22nd Regiment is an infantry regiment and the most famous francophone organization of the Canadian Forces. The regiment comprises three Regular Force battalions, two Primary Reserve battalions, and a band, making it the largest regiment in the Canadian Army...

  • 2 Battalion, Royal 22e Régiment
  • 3 Battalion, Royal 22e Régiment
  • 5 Royal Canadian Horse Artillery
    Royal Canadian Horse Artillery
    The Royal Canadian Horse Artillery is the name given to the regular field artillery units of the Canadian Army. RCHA units are the senior units of the Canadian land field force, with a history dating back to the birth of Canada as a nation...

     (5e Régiment d'artillerie légère du Canada)
  • 5 Combat Engineer Regiment
    5 Combat Engineer Regiment
    5 Combat Engineer Regiment is a regular force regiment of the Canadian Military Engineers commanded by a lieutenant-colonel...

     (5e Régiment du génie de combat)
  • 5 Military Police Platoon (5e Peloton de police militaire)
  • 5 Field Ambulance (5e Ambulance de campagne)

The base also houses 430 Tactical Helicopter Squadron, 5 Service Battalion (which also provides services from ASU Saint-Jean and CFB Montreal
CFB Montreal
Canadian Forces Base Montreal is a Canadian Forces Base network located in Montreal, Quebec.The base is home to:* Land Forces Quebec Area* 34e Groupe-Brigade du Canada which includes:...

), CI SQFT (Land Force Quebec Area
Land Force Quebec Area
Land Force Quebec Area is responsible for all Canadian army operations and administration in the region within the province of Quebec. LFQA is headquartered in Montreal.- Regular Force :* Land Force Quebec Area Training Centre - Courcelette...

 Training Centre), in addition to providing training facilities for most Quebec-based reserve units. The Myriam Bédard
Myriam Bédard
Myriam Bédard, MSC is a Canadian biathlete , winner of two Olympic gold medals.-Olympic career:Born in Neufchâtel, Quebec, Bédard learned marksmanship as a member of the Royal Canadian Army Cadets' 2772 cadet corps, which she joined at the age of 15, and participated in her first biathlon event at...

Biathlon is a term used to describe any sporting event made up of two disciplines. However, biathlon usually refers specifically to the winter sport that combines cross-country skiing and rifle shooting...

 Training Centre is also located on the base.

CFB Valcartier is also home to a Defence Research & Development Canada
DRDC Valcartier
DRDC Valcartier is a major Canadian military research station at Canadian Forces Base Valcartier, Quebec, one of nine centres making up Defence Research and Development Canada ....

 (DRDC) location, which conducts military research for the Canadian Forces
Canadian Forces
The Canadian Forces , officially the Canadian Armed Forces , are the unified armed forces of Canada, as constituted by the National Defence Act, which states: "The Canadian Forces are the armed forces of Her Majesty raised by Canada and consist of one Service called the Canadian Armed Forces."...



ASU Valcartier is also home of the Army Cadet Summer Training Centre Valcartier, which trains Royal Canadian Army Cadets
Royal Canadian Army Cadets
The Royal Canadian Army Cadets is a Canadian national youth program sponsored by the Canadian Forces and the civilian Army Cadet League of Canada. Administered by the Canadian Forces, the program is funded through the Department of National Defence with the civilian partner providing support in...

 of the Eastern Region / Province of Québec
Regional Cadet Support Unit (Eastern)
The Regional Cadet Support Unit is the Canadian Forces unit that is responsible for providing support to the Canadian Cadet Organizations within the province of Québec, Canada...


In July 1974, an explosives safety training accident involving "D" Company killed six cadets and injured over 50. A coroners inquiry found the instructor criminally responsible.
An account of the explosion, its cause and effects are detailed in the book As You Were: The Tragedy at Valcartier, published by Goose Lane Editions
Goose Lane Editions
Goose Lane Editions is a Canadian book publishing company founded in 1954 in Fredericton, New Brunswick as Fiddlehead Poetry Books by Fred Cogswell and a group of students and faculty from the University of New Brunswick. After Cogswell retired in 1981, his successor, Peter Thomas, changed the name...

Contaminated water

In 1997 a cancer-causing chemical
A carcinogen is any substance, radionuclide, or radiation that is an agent directly involved in causing cancer. This may be due to the ability to damage the genome or to the disruption of cellular metabolic processes...

, trichloroethylene
The chemical compound trichloroethylene is a chlorinated hydrocarbon commonly used as an industrial solvent. It is a clear non-flammable liquid with a sweet smell. It should not be confused with the similar 1,1,1-trichloroethane, which is commonly known as chlorothene.The IUPAC name is...

, was found in the water supply of CFB Valcartier and the nearby town of Shannon, Quebec
Shannon, Quebec
Shannon is a municipality in Quebec, Canada, along the Jacques-Cartier River north-east of Quebec City.It was formed in December 1846 when it separated from the territory of Saint-Catherine-de-Portneuf, following protests of this part of the population against the municipal taxes. Its population...

. Trichloroethylene, which has been linked to liver cancer
Liver cancer
Liver tumors or hepatic tumors are tumors or growths on or in the liver . Several distinct types of tumors can develop in the liver because the liver is made up of various cell types. These growths can be benign or malignant...

, was used for degreasing metal parts at the base in the 1970s. The Department of National Defence
Department of National Defence (Canada)
The Department of National Defence , frequently referred to by its acronym DND, is the department within the government of Canada with responsibility for all matters concerning the defence of Canada...

, which was accused of a cover-up, reached a legal settlement with the town in 2004.
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