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New Canadian Coast Guard radars will enhance marine traffic monitoring off B.C. coast

By BCShippingNews 15 November 2018
New Canadian Coast Guard radars will enhance marine traffic monitoring off B.C. coast
Six new radar installations planned for waters off southern B.C.

The Canadian Coast Guard is strengthening its network for monitoring marine traffic on the West Coast, with six new radar installations that will provide a more reliable and accurate picture of traffic in the waters off southern British Columbia. These installations will ensure safer movement of vessels in these waters, helping to prevent potential marine incidents and protect Canada’s marine environment and coastal communities.

The Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, today, was at the Coast Guard’s Sea Island station in Richmond, B.C. to announce the locations for the new radars and the expanded coverage they will provide as part of the Coast Guard’s Marine Communication and Traffic Services network.

The radars will be installed in six areas: South Grenville and South Douglas Channels, Lama Pass / Seaforth Channel, Queen Charlotte Sound, Queen Charlotte Strait, Seymour Narrows, and the North Strait of Georgia. These areas were chosen based on existing gaps in radar coverage and prioritized based on traffic volume and risks to navigation.

The Government of Canada recognizes that the new radars will be located within the traditional territories of a number of First Nations in B.C. The government has been engaged with these First Nations since the project began, and has received their support for this work to improve marine safety in coastal waters.

The Oceans Protection Plan is a national strategy designed to improve marine safety and protect Canada’s marine environment and coastal communities. Launched in November 2016, the five-year, $1.5-billion Oceans Protection Plan is the largest investment ever made to protect Canada’s coasts and waterways. Over the past two years, the Government of Canada has invested in hundreds of projects that are making our marine safety system stronger, and protecting our coastal environments and marine species more than ever before.

Quotes

“These new radars will enhance our Marine Communication and Traffic Services network, providing reliable, accurate information on vessel movement in the coastal waters of British Columbia. This information will increase marine safety and reduce the risk of marine emergencies. This is another example of our partnership with Indigenous and coastal communities in B.C. to make our waters and coasts safer, cleaner and healthier.”

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

Quick facts

  • Radars play an essential role in the Marine Communication and Traffic Services network, allowing Coast Guard officers to monitor, track and manage vessel traffic movement. Radars are also used to increase overall maritime domain awareness in Canada.
  • Coast Guard radar sites are built to the highest standards of safety, ensuring chosen location and radar emissions are well within Health Canada guidelines. Marine radars are directional and radar emissions pose no hazard to the general public. 
  • Through the Oceans Protection Plan, the Government of Canada is working with Indigenous and coastal communities and marine stakeholders to help keep Canadian waters and coasts safe and clean for today and into the future.