Transport Minister David Collenette today
announced that Transport Canada has issued a Ship Safety Bulletin reminding vessel operators of recent amendments to the Lifesaving Equipment Regulations and Small Vessel Regulations that require safety briefings on all Canadian passenger vessels.
In the course of its investigation into the sinking of the amphibious vessel Lady Duck on June 23, 2002, the Transportation Safety Board issued
a Marine Safety Advisory to Transport Canada on July 19, 2002, suggesting that the department take steps to ensure that safety briefings are conducted by vessel operators.
As of March 2002, all operators of passenger vessels are required to provide safety briefings to their passengers on or before the departure of the vessel. Safety briefings include information such as the location of lifejackets and survival craft.
“Transport Canada has acted quickly in response to the Transportation Safety Board’s concerns,” said Collenette. “Today’s Ship Safety Bulletin is a reminder to passenger vessel operators of their obligation to provide passengers with the information they might need in the case of an emergency.”
This bulletin follows a letter Transport Canada distributed July 11 and 12, 2002, to all manufacturers and commercial operators of amphibious vessels across the country. The letter included reminders relating to lifesaving equipment, means of escape, watertight integrity, bilge pumping systems
, daily maintenance and operational practices, as well as emergency reporting for amphibious vessels.
In addition, as part of their inspections, Transport Canada inspectors
conduct emergency exercises to verify that vessels are sufficiently staffed, and can properly carry out emergency duties.