BC Ferries is asking recreational boaters to learn ferry signals. (Black Press Media file photo)

BC Ferries asks boaters to learn signals and be careful around ferries

BC Ferries responded to 15 marine emergencies in 2018

To mark North American Safe Boating Awareness Week, BC Ferries is reminding everyone to stay safe on the water, especially when navigating near ferries.

The company ramps up its service during the spring and summer months, with more ferries plying their routes.

ALSO READ: Police called to reports of woman naked, intoxicated at Swartz Bay ferry terminal

“We have some of the most beautiful waters in the world for boating in B.C. and we want everyone to share the ocean safely,” says Corrine Storey, BC Ferries’ chief operating officer.

BC Ferries asks pleasure craft operators to use caution when boating near ferry lanes and BC Ferries’ terminals and reminds mariners to learn the ferry signals.

One long blast – while the ferry is in dock – indicates it is about to depart. Three short blasts indicates the ferry is about to go astern (in reverse) and five or more short blasts in rapid succession is a warning that it is unclear if the pleasure craft ahead is manoeuvering in such a way that it can avoid a collision.

ALSO READ: BC Ferries’ marine super talks dodging whales

Recreational boaters are asked to avoid crowding the ferry in narrow channels such as Active Pass, steer clear of the berths and docks, and avoid crossing dangerously close in front of the ferry.

“Boaters should keep in mind that ferries do not manoeuver as easily as smaller boats,” said Storey. “It can take up to 10 ship lengths for a ferry to come to a complete stop in an emergency.”

With approximately 500 sailings per day and a fleet of 36 vessels, BC Ferries’ crews are often called on to respond to emergencies at sea, when requested by the Canadian Coast Guard.

The company says their crews are well trained and maintain their skills by regularly performing fire drills, evacuation simulations and person-overboard scenarios.

Last year, BC Ferries responded to 15 marine emergencies, which are usually more prevalent in the summer months as more pleasure boaters take to the water.

ALSO READ: POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

North American Safe Boating Awareness Week runs through May 24. This year’s campaign reminds mariners to wear life jackets, take a boating course and understand the dangers of cold-water immersion. Pleasure boaters are also encouraged to abstain from drinking alcohol while operating a boat.

For more information visit csbc.ca.



nick.murray@peninsulanewsreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

bc ferry

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Faulty janitorial equipment likely caused Saanich school fire

Saturday morning fire damaged roof of Strawberry Vale Elementary

Greater Victoria records highest unemployment in history with 11 per cent

Past peak was 7.8 per cent more than a decade ago, according to South Island Prosperity Partnership

Sidney’s Mary Winspear Centre to host a trio of acts

Aaron Pritchett, Alex Cuba and Valdy will each play four shows

Garth Homer Society in Saanich turns lemons into lemonade with online programs

Victoria disability organization sets up online programs and learning tools in wake of COVID-19

Human behaviour likely to deter birds from Esquimalt Lagoon, survey suggests

More Great Blue Herons spotted, fewer mallard ducks seen

Islanders want BC Ferries to follow order that lets residents board before tourists

For ferry-dependent communities, ferries are often the sole practical lifeline to work, school or medical appointments.

Beverly Hills 90210 star’s family selling Vancouver Island Beach Resort

You can own Jason Priestley’s Terrace Beach Resort in Ucluelet for less than $5 million

Genetic detectives begin work to trace spread of COVID-19 in Canada

The kinds of genetic technology being used for this project did not exist when SARS hit Canada in 2003

Sports fishers protest Fraser River Chinook closures

Public Fishery Alliance wants hatchery fish open for harvest

B.C. Ferries increasing passenger capacity after COVID-19 restrictions

Transport Canada 50-per-cent limit being phased out, no current plans to provide masks

Shellfish industry get funds to clean up at Island sites and beyond

Businesses can apply to cover half of costs to clean up so-called ‘ghost gear’

Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Most Read