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Transport Canada Update - April 30, 2015

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The Canadian Marine Advisory Committee spring meetings took place last week in Ottawa. Jamie Gordon, Mike Vollmer and I attend on behalf of Sail Canada and are pleased to report as below (with thanks to Jamie for the report)

Transport Canada Update

Recreational Boating Standard – TP15136
A number of schools have applied for and have received their letter of participation in the Small Vessel Compliance Program from Transport Canada. Some schools have experienced delays in receiving responses from Transport Canada regional offices and in some cases have been unable to connect with local staff knowledgeable about the standard. Sail Canada is working with the Provincial Sailing Associations, Schools and Transport Canada staff in Ottawa to address this issue. Please contact Sail Canada either through the Cruising Panel or Jamie Gordon if you need assistance in this area.
Sail Canada is continuing to work with Transport Canada to identify and address issues of concern with the recreational boating standard. Issues under discussion include

Vessel size and voyage restrictions
This applies to vessels over 15m in length and those that are proceeding beyond normal voyage areas. (Offshore and Ocean voyages) These restrictions are impacting a few schools and Transport Canada staff have indicated they are willing to work with these schools to prepare an application to the Marine Transportation Review Board for specific approval for each of their situations.

PFDS - Discussions to clarify the type of PFD that may be worn by students to meet the standard are ongoing with the expectation that this issue will be resolved in the near future.

Coach Boats
Coach boats used in support of coaching and training are non-pleasure craft under the Canada Shipping Act 2001 when the coach operating the vessel is paid for their services. These coach boats become passenger carrying vessels when paying students are carried in situations that are not emergencies. Sail Canada, along with a number of other water based sport organizations, are working with Transport Canada to address this issue. There are 3 areas of concern – construction, safety equipment and personnel training.

���� Construction: Pleasure vessels less than 6 metres meet construction requirements for non-pleasure craft. These vessels should be registered, however registration is optional for vessels powered by outboards less than 10 h.p. Groups of vessels may be registered for a flat $50 dollar fee and the registration is valid for 5 years.

���� Safety Equipment: Based on review of the Small Vessel Regulations safety equipment in addition to that carried by pleasure craft should be carried by coach boats. Specifics are: flares (3 – no smoke), a first aid kit, and a portable fire extinguisher. We are asking Transport Canada to confirm this interpretation.

���� Personnel. The Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC) allows coach boat operation and provides the operator the right to carry up to 6 passengers in sheltered waters or in waters where you can never be more than 2.5 miles from shore. Sheltered waters are explicitly defined in the Vessel Certificates Regulations. Not all areas where Sail Canada coaches work fall into the defined sheltered waters areas. Sail Canada is working with Transport Canada and other sport governing bodies to find an appropriate solution to this issue.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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