SOS Kitsilano Coast Guard StationAs the May target date looms for the federal government’s planned closure of Kitsilano Coast Guard Station, opponents among first-responder organizations and at all levels of government are stepping up their campaign to reverse the controversial decision.


Among recent developments:
At the Vancouver Boat Show, hard-working volunteers from the Jericho Sailing Centre Association, a leader in the campaign to save the station, collected more than 3,000 signed letters to Prime Minster Stephen Harper. The letter sets out key arguments against the closure, accuses local Conservative MPs of “abandoning ship” on the issue, and concludes: “I will not vote for a party that closes the Kitsilano Coast Guard Station.” The letters were sent to the PM at no cost using MPs’ free letter-mail privileges.


“People are angry. This crowd (at the show) is out on the water and they understand that there are no ambulance or emergency services out there. There are a lot of Conservative supporters in the boating crowd and they’re frustrated,” said JSCA general manager Mike Cotter.
On a February 8 visit to Vancouver, the prime minister defended the closure, saying the government was re-allocating money toward services that will enhance public safety: “We’ve made investments here and in other parts of the country…to try and move things away from offices and back offices and to actually having resources on the ground and in the water.”


But his remarks puzzled base supporters, who point out the closure will result in lay-off or transfer for the base’s 12 line search-and-rescue personnel, not coast guard managers. And the only new vessel to be added to the local SAR fleet will be a hovercraft based at Richmond’s Sea Island – but critics say it will be at least 30 minutes away from Vancouver Harbour and may be less effective in rescue situations better served by the cutter now based at Kits, especially in the strong winds and big seas that prevail on the coast in fall and winter.


The issue has created rare unanimity among BC politicians at the municipal and provincial levels, especially with a provincial election looming this spring. Premier Christy Clark recorded a YouTube video in which she said her Liberal government is intent on reversing the closure plan. “For the safety of British Columbians, the federal government must find the funding to keep the Kits Coast guard station open and keep Vancouver families safe,” said Clark, whose Vancouver-Point Grey riding includes Kits Base.


A January rally at Jericho Sailing Centre drew about 250 people, including representatives of all provincial political parties as well as opposition MPs from the Lower Mainland and Vancouver city councillors, all speaking against the base closure.
But the event’s most compelling speaker was Mandip Sandhu, who described how his brother Paul died in 2001 when his car plunged into the Fraser River and coast guard rescuers on the scene were unable to enter the water because the agency’s dive program had been cancelled 72 hours earlier. As a result of the Sandhu family’s campaign – and the deaths of five family members in the capsize of a fishboat, when rescuers also couldn’t enter the water – coast guard dive teams were eventually reinstated.
“We can’t let this happen. ‘I told you so’ will be a heavy burden for all of us to bear,” said an emotional Sandhu.


Cotter said the campaign to save the base will step up as the closure approaches, targeting Prime Minister Harper directly because Conservative MPs have failed to respond on the issue. “The rally was really a starting point. We’re going to ramp up the pressure and increase the noise.”

To learn more visit: www.cbc.ca/news/
 

Lifestyle

  • Prev
This line-up of Beneteaus can to us from our friends at RCR Yachts in NY State where they are ...
As another harsh Victoria winter came to a close, the deck repair and refinishing continued with ...
The Peterborough Canoe Company was formed in 1892 and began production the following year after ...
On one of the sunny days we had recently, Kyle MacTaggart in Honey Harbour ON fired up the Merc to ...
For all those OnBoard subscribers who have followed along with the maintenance, repairs and ...
We hardly need tell you about the pandemic but it’s worth noting that the marine industry is acting ...
If you’ve been to CORK, you’ve probably seen Tim Irwin. Whether he was organizing volunteers, ...
This brilliant shot comes to us from professional shooter Elle Bruce.  These four sailors are ...
In 2008, Pat and Lynn Lortie said goodbye to their everyday life to pursue their dream; making ...
With old boats every repair seems to uncover something else needing attention.  Removing the ...

DIY & How to

  • Prev
Building on our last two editions (Sealants, and Fibreglass, respectively), Gelcoat is the next ...
After a successful R2Ak and regatta season in 2019, I felt that Pitoraq was due for a major ...
Pause for a moment and ponder this question. How much is your life and your safety at sea worth? ...
Last edition we talked about sealants to perform tasks like bedding and sealing. Other tasks like ...
Over the winter, a many-thousand pound fiberglass, wood or metal shell is held in position by only ...
Since the late 19th century, a debate has raged on the relative merits of diesel fuel over ...
This bag does more than hold your anchor and rode in one tidy little pile. After you’ve anchored ...
Purchase your copy of the BRAND NEW Ports Georgian Bay 2020 Edition at the Toronto International ...
The boat was put on the hard for this winter and were going to follow along with Graham as he ...
In this part, we’ll delve deeper into the other parts of the boat found below the water line: the ...

Shrink Wrap2020 is a year of change – self-isolation, social distancing, quarantine, and working remotely have become the norm. For many, this has been a bitter pill to swallow. Another bitter pill for boaters is the delay of the season. Provincial laws differ – so terms like ‘essential’ aren’t translating widely across the marine world.

In BC, marinas remain open and fuel is available, sometimes with conditions. In Ontario, marinas, boat launches, yacht clubs and the professionals that service the marine industry aren’t considered essential, unless the service and location allows a person to access their permanent residence only accessible by boat.

Read more about Boating in 2020........................

 

  

Boat Reviews

  • Prev
No wonder this is one of Regal’s best-selling boats; the Regal 33 Express offers amazing ...
The newest member of Beneteau’s Gran Turismo line is the GT 36 and this yacht brings the style and ...
With a philosophy of quality and 'doing things right Ranger Tugs launches the all new R-25 at the ...
The new Beneteau Swift Trawler 41 renews the spirit of the practical seaworthy cruiser. The ...
The Canadian Yachting test crew last week had the opportunity to run the Bavaria S36 HT at St ...

CY Virtual Video Boat Tours

Virtual Boat ToursWe all love boats and nothing can break us up! So, what better way to spend our time than looking at interesting boats and going aboard in a virtual ride or tour. We have asked our friends at various dealers and manufacturers to help us assemble a one-stop online resource to experience some of the most interesting boats on the market today. Where the CY Team has done a review, we connect you to that expert viewpoint. Our Virtual Show will continue to grow so visit frequently and check it out. If you can’t go boating, you can almost experience the thrill via your screen. Not quite the same, but we hope you enjoy our fine tour collection.

 

Read more about the CY Virtual Boat Tours....................

Destinations

  • Prev
If you have four hours to enjoy a fine tour of one of Canada’s most interesting waterways (let’s ...
Boom & Batten Restaurant is suspended over the water adjacent to the Songhees Walkway and ...
Provincial Boat Havens are those special places to drop anchor in British Columbia’s West Coast and ...
NW Explorations, a Bellingham, Washington-based yacht charter, brokerage, and marine services ...

KingstonBy Amy Hogue

Cruise into the city of Kingston, Ontario, and it will quickly become clear that this city and surrounding waterways have something special. Built around the northern shore of Lake Ontario, Kingston is the place to go if you love to explore new waterways, fantastic views, and exceptional boating opportunities.

Sitting at the intersection of three world-class Canadian bodies of water, Lake Ontario, the St. Lawrence River, and the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Rideau Canal (Cataraqui River from Kingston to Newboro), the water’s influence is deeply woven into Kingston’s culture and history. 

Read more about Kingston...........

 

Marine Products

  • Prev
Since its introduction last year, the JBL by Harman Marine BassPro 10" Powered Subwoofer (JBLMBP10) ...
After decades of perusing charts and guidebooks as part of planning a cruise, it was a totally ...
Ever since I was a youngster Jeeps of all kinds have fascinated me. It wasn’t until the mid 70s ...
New from Plastimo, this bi-colour backpack in Tarpaulin 500D will keep contents dry from ship to ...
Being a boater can come with certain space restraints for additional items that may make your ...
Whether you are interested in monitoring your vessel’s systems while underway or remotely from your ...
No wires to install down your mast. Transmit to smartphone/tablet. Works with lots of great ...
Vesper Cortex, the advanced multi-station VHF, AIS, monitor with intuitive touchscreen operation is ...
The Handy One Combo is an all-powerful, hands-free lighting solution. It's tough, reliable, ...
The Nebo FIXR features an easy, portable solution for all your everyday tools.