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Parks Canada hosts two table-top exercises
Two separate table-top exercises hosted by Parks Canada this past September
in Cape Breton Island, allowed different agencies to explore issues of
interagency cooperation. Representatives from Nova Scotia Emergency Measures
Organization, ground SAR volunteers, the local fire department, RCMP,
regional police department, Parks Canada, emergency health services and
the National Search and Rescue Secretariat, worked together to improve
communications and interoperability during the two different scenarios.
The first mission was a simulated rocky shore rescue where the participants
discussed issues concerning jurisdiction, efficient interagency cooperation,
media inquiries and briefings, legal issues, efficient radio communications
and more. The second rescue, on an inland, mountainous slippery slope,
focused on communications, shared resources, roles and responsibilities
of each participating agency.
Participants felt the table-top exercises improve interagency understanding
of the responsibilities and knowledge of each agency. These table-tops
should be followed by multi-jurisdictional live exercises within the next
Canadian Safe Boating Council recognition awards
At the Canadian Safe Boating Council's (CSBC) annual symposium in Longueuil,
Québec last September, eight awards honoured efforts to increase
boating safety in Canada.
- Lynda Zkrewski received a Certificate of Service for her time as Director
of the CSBC.
- Luba Goy, Loreena McKennitt and members of the Canadian Coast Guard
Auxiliary received Certificates of Appreciation for supporting safe
- Certificates of Merit were given to Irwin Doxsee, Michael Vollmer
and Ted Rankine for their involvement with the CSBC.
- Catherine Sandiford, past director of the CSBC, received the Distinguished
Service Citation for her work with the Canadian and National Safe Boating
Councils and the Canadian and U.S. Coast Guards.
Provincial support for a National Avalanche Centre
The British Columbia government announced in its Public Avalanche Safety
Review in October 2003 that it would commit $125,000 annually for the
next three years to support public avalanche awareness and education in
The report calls for the Canadian Avalanche Association (CAA) to operate
a National Avalanche Centre that would co-ordinate and deliver avalanche
awareness and education across Canada. A federal-provincial-private sector
partnership would provide funding for core services. Until now, the CAA
has relied on private sector donations and sponsors to pay for public
safety programs. Follow up action is currently being considered by the
governments and agencies involved.
New SAR Skills Handbook
The new Emergency Response Institute (ERI) Canada's SAR skills handbook
has been written to provide details on the latest search techniques, information
on tracking, survival, emergency medical care, as well as duties and tasks
to new and experienced field responders. The handbook is available through
ERI Canada and costs $24.99 a copy, with a reduced price of $21.75 for
orders of 10 books or more. For more information, call (403) 721-2121.
New portable water safety campaign in Québec
After years of observing boater activities and behaviour, a new campaign
has been developed to deliver prevention messages and reduce boating risks,
The main feature of the INFEAU campaign is its specially built portable
and inflatable dock that can be anchored where boat traffic is dense or
hazardous. This floating dock will have information on local boating hazards
and safety and will provide bottled water and other amenities supplied
by sponsors and supporters.
The point of the floating dock is to inform, educate and train boaters.
For more information, contact Vahe T. Vassilian, Project Coordinator,
at (514) 288-7622 or firstname.lastname@example.org
New Canadian Directory of Emergency Services
The first National Directory of Emergency Services, now available from
EmergencyServices.ca, offers free services to the emergency services industry
such as forums, hosting, e-mail and galleries. The Directory lists contacts
for police, fire and EMS service in Canada. A corresponding 136-page spiral
bound book also includes resources such as Canadian Forces Bases, Provincial
Emergency Measures Organizations and the Office of Critical Infrastructure
Protection and Emergency Preparedness offices throughout Canada. The book
is available from EmergencyServices.ca, PO Box 2545, Lac La Biche, Alberta
T0A 2C0 for $29.13 including GST and postage, and volume discounts are
Strong receives Order of Canada
In August 2003, The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Governor General
of Canada, announced the appointment of Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary
(CCGA) Chief Executive Officer Harry Strong to the Order of Canada. This
is the highest honour for lifetime achievement in Canada. Since the creation
of the CCGA in 1979, Mr. Strong has dedicated a great deal of time and
energy to saving lives and improving boating safety. As Chief Executive
Officer, Mr. Strong is responsible for planning, training and establishing
programs for search and rescue and boating safety. He has been instrumental
in earning for the CCGA an outstanding reputation as one of the best life-saving
operations in Canada.
SAR Mission Management System wins award
Capt. Rob Mulholland of 1CAD, Canadian Forces, was presented with the
Agatha Bystram award for leadership in information management in November
at the Museum of Civilization in Gatineau, QC. Capt. Mulholland is recognized
for his dedication and extensive work to bring the SAR Mission Management
System online. Agatha Bystram (1934-1994), past director of library services
at Environment Canada, was a pioneer in the management of federal information.
This award is intended to encourage continued progress by recognizing
other innovators in information management.
Lifesaving Society's 2003 National Drowning Trends
The Lifesaving Society's 2003 National Drowning Trends report profiles
drownings and water-related fatalities in Canada from 1996 to 2000, the
most recent years for which statistics are available. The report examines
the statistics of who, when, where and why of drowning. According to the
report, the number of drownings has been decreasing since 1997, attributable
to drowning prevention initiatives. For more information or a copy of
the report, visit www.lifesaving.ca and click on Publications.
Six Labradors take historic flight
It was a once in a lifetime moment for search and rescue when six Labrador
helicopters from 424 Squadron, Trenton, took flight together for the first
time this past October.
With the upcoming retirement of the Labrador helicopters, this was also
the last time it would be possible to have all six serviceable at the
same time, as three are scheduled for permanent storage.
The six Labradors, accompanied by a Cormorant, taxied to the runway,
took off to hover and then one-by-one, departed the hover and flew one
common circuit around the airfield.
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