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ICI Radio-Canada Première.svg
City of license Windsor, Ontario
Branding Ici Radio-Canada Première
Frequency 1550 kHz (AM)
Format Public broadcasting (French)
Power 10,000 watts
Class A
Transmitter coordinates 42°12′56″N 82°55′15″W / 42.2156°N 82.9208°W / 42.2156; -82.9208
Callsign meaning Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Essex County French
Former frequencies 540 kHz (1970-2013)
Owner Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Sister stations CBEW-FM, CBE-FM, CBET-DT
Website Radio-Canada

CBEF is a Canadian radio station, broadcasting at 1550 AM in Windsor, Ontario. It airs the programming of Radio-Canada's Première network. CBEF is a Class A station broadcasting on the clear-channel frequency of 1550 kHz; in fact, the only full power station on this frequency in Canada.

CBEF was launched in 1970. It originally broadcast at 540 AM, until taking over English sister station CBE's frequency in 2013 after that station converted to the FM band.


In the CBC's programming cuts announced on March 26, 2009, almost all of the station's local programming was slated for cancellation, meaning that the station had become effectively a rebroadcaster of Toronto's CJBC except for a skeleton staff of two anchors to present local news updates during the day and report on breaking news.[1] A local lobby group, SOS-CBEF, organized to oppose the cutbacks,[1] but their request for an injunction against the change was denied in July due to the presiding judge ruling that she did not have the appropriate legal jurisdiction to issue an injunction.[2]

Matins sans frontières, a one-hour local morning program hosted by Charles Lévesque, was reinstated from 7 September 2010, and in May 2013 was expanded to two hours; as of Summer 2015, it expanded to three hours, airing weekdays from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. The station continues to rebroadcast CJBC in other local programming blocks.

At the CRTC's license renewal for the CBC's services in 2013, the commission directed the network to maintain at least 15 hours per week of local programming on CBEF during the 2013-18 license term, due to the lack of other French-language radio services in Windsor.[3]


The station also has a rebroadcast transmitter (CBEF-1-FM) in Leamington, on 103.1 FM. Due to AM reception issues in downtown Windsor, CBEF was also approved by the CRTC to operate a 620-watt rebroadcaster in Windsor at 105.5 MHz, provided that does not interfere with stations at or near this frequency, such as WWWM-FM in Toledo or WWCK-FM in Flint. The callsign for the new rebroadcaster at 105.5 FM is CBEF-2-FM. As of April 1, 2012, 105.5 CBEF-2 is on the air.

In May 2012, the CBC filed with the CRTC seeking permission to move CBEF to CBE's previous transmitter and frequency of 1550 AM at 10,000 watts,[4] and to establish a low-powered FM rebroadcaster at 98.3 MHz in Sarnia.[5] The change was requested due to concerns that rust may be affecting the now-obsolete facility, and that nearby hydro (electric) lines were also affecting its signal. The move, as requested, was approved by the CRTC on October 16, 2012; the station was given until October 16, 2014 to either implement the move or request an extension beyond that date.[6] CBEF began simulcasting on, and transitioned entirely to 1550 AM in November 2012.

Despite the Class A designation and a clear-channel frequency, CBEF broadcasts on a directional signal to the northeast, to protect another Class A clear-channel, XERUV-AM Xalapa, Mexico, as well as smaller stations operating on that frequency (the closest being WLTI in New Castle, Indiana and WDLR in Delaware, Ohio).


Rebroadcasters of CBEF
City of license Identifier Frequency Power Class RECNet CRTC Decision
Leamington CBEF-1-FM 103.1 FM 1,000 watts A Query
Windsor CBEF-2-FM 105.5 FM 620 watts A Query
Sarnia CBEF-3-FM 98.3 FM 2,320 watts A Query

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