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Canadian Coast Guard  (ID: 15401)

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(right) Everette Tucker, National Commodore, USCGA (left) and Harry Strong, Chief Executive Officer, CCGA (right) Captain Mark Kern, Chief Director, Auxiliary (left) and André Audet, acting Director, Search and Rescue, CCG (right). Sophie Bouffard is the Editor of Echo. Simulated oil spill tests Canadian and U.S. agencies By Scott Verret, Maritimes Region About 200 spill-response personnel from several Canadian and American agencies descended on the small village of Eastport, Maine, on June 2 and 3 to respond to a simulated oil spill. These experts were taking part in CANUSLANT (Canada­U.S.­ Atlantic) 99, an exercise held every three years to test the preparedness of Canadian and American agencies to respond to emergencies in common waters. The exercise focuses on an oil spill because oil slicks don't respect national borders. For CANUSLANT 99, 25 Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) personnel joined several other employees from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and representatives from Environment Canada, the Canadian Navy and the New Brunswick Department of Environment as the Canadian participants. The United States Coast Guard (USCG) led the exercise with participation from numerous federal and state agencies. For the first time, local Aboriginal organizations also participated. Kent Line, a New Brunswick-based shipping company, volunteered to act as responsible party and also sent representatives. The CCG response vessel Tuebor also participated along with the Environmental Response Branch, which deployed its newly refitted communications van featuring built-in VHF radios, secure telephone and fax, and cellular and satellite telephones. The exercise simulated the spill of 4,000 barrels of bunker C oil and 4,000 barrels of diesel from a Kent Line tanker that went aground near East Quoddy Head at the mouth of the Bay of Fundy. A spill in this area would pose special problems due to strong currents and high tides, and affect numerous environmentally sensitive areas and substantial fishing and aquaculture industries. During the exercise, the participants created planning, logistics, finance and operations cells, along with a joint information centre. The cells were set up as part of a unified command structure to respond to issues that develop after the initial response, and the exercise simulated days two and three of the operation. The USCG and CCG and Kent Line led the unified command. The focus of CANUSLANT is on planning, logistics and interagency cooperation, more than on operations. The chief goal of this year's exercise was to assess the Joint Marine Pollution Contingency Plan, its Atlantic Operational Supplement and other contingency plans, as well as the integration of Canada ­ United States management processes and communications systems. Finally, the exercise evaluated the suitability of the community college in Eastport to be a pre-designated command post for a major spill in the Passamaquoddy Bay area near the Bay of Fundy. CANUSLANT exercises have been held since the mid-1980s. Similar simulations are held on the Great Lakes(CANUSLAK) and the West Coast (CANUPAC). The Saint John-based CCG response vessel Tuebor at sea near Eastport, Maine during Exercise CANUSLANT 99. Clem McPhee of Maritimes Region (seated) at work in the planning section during Exercise CANUSLANT 99. Scott Verret is the Communications Manager for Maritimes Region. Erratum Incorrect information appeared on the front page of the May-June issue of Echo. We should read: « I really enjoyed the evening » said René Grenier, Captain and Director of Operational Services. Pacific Region Training Week a hit By Captain Syd Webb, Pacific Region Pacific Region Coast Guard Training Week '99 - with its focus on health and safety - took place from April 25 to 30, and featured some differences from last year's Fleet Roundup. More than just the gathering of ships in Victoria for fleet personnel training, this year's event included personnel from both on-duty and off-duty crews, as well as all other CCG directorates and some Department of Fisheries and Oceans branches. Most of the training took place in Victoria but courses were also held in remote sites such as Prince Rupert, Comox, Vancouver and Ucluelet. To keep the coast safe, CCGS Tanu and CCGS Gordon Reid remained at sea, so their crews, unfortunately, were not able to attend training. Training Week is an efficient way to train a large number of people in a very short time. Approximately 600 people (about 400 in the Victoria area and the remainder in the remote sites) took part in 45 courses and information sessions during the week. Experts from the department, supported by contractors and representatives from other government departments such as Health Canada and the Department of National Defence, offered the courses. Again this year we invited United States Coast Guard staff from adjacent districts in Washington and Alaska to attend. In addition to staff from the USCGC Mariposa from Seattle, personnel from as far away as Alameda, California, joined us to participate in courses, learn how we put on training and foster positive relations with their neighbours. Most participants took more than one course. Some courses were so popular they were offered several times in Victoria as well as in the remote sites. The most attended course was Standard First Aid with CPR, which certified a total of 225 people. Some of the other courses included the Fisheries Act and Regulations, a briefing by the Office of Boating Safety, swift water swimmer, helicopter safety procedures, firearms safety training, office ergonomics and back care, radio licence, fire extinguisher training, media relations, computer skills and emergency preparedness. John Mackie appreciates the usefulness of the two courses he took. "The swift water swimmer course is certainly applicable to what I do," says Mackie, a Navigable Waters Protection Officer, who often has to walk along a stream or river to assess its navigability. "There's always a possibility that I might fall into a swiftly moving river." Mackie also took a bear-awareness seminar. For Maureen Paterson, Communications Assistant at regional headquarters, being able to take a course in ergonomics right in the Vancouver office was useful. "The course was excellent for me, and I was able to rework my station so it's now more comfortable," she says. Some of her co-workers are asking her for tips on setting up their workspaces. The event also incorporated the Coast Guard Olympics followed by a barbecue, both of which were extremely popular and enjoyed by all. The events included the buoy chain drag, heaving line toss, seafood chowder cook-off, firefighters target shoot and the tug of war. Also, our new hovercraft, Siyay , took people out on rides, which were quite exciting and, at times, a little damp. The management team in the tug of war event (from back to front): Max Birch, PabloSobrino, Fred Moxey, Terry Weber, Don Rodden, Terry Tebb, Rick Bryant and GeorgeHorel. The lifeboat and hovercraft teams versus the CCGS Narwhal crew in the buoy chain drag race. Captain Syd Webb is the Commanding Officer of CCGS Gordon Reid. Public meeting focuseson low-water-level concerns By Ed Eryuzlu, CCG Headquarters Water levels in the Great Lakes and parts of the St. Lawrence River have dropped significantly since the summer of 1998, particularly on Lake Ontario. Low water levels have serious impacts on the recreational boating community and commercial shipping. CCG is actively involved in the regulation of water levels on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River system through the International St. Lawrence River Board of Control of the International Joint Commission (IJC). The Chair of the Canadian section of the board is Jean Murray, Director General, Marine Navigation Services. On June 2, 1999, CCG officials organized, on behalf of the Board, a public meeting and a round table panel discussion in Cornwall, Ontario, to discuss the regulation of outflows and water levels of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River. In the afternoon, a round table panel discussion, co-chaired by Jean Murray and Colonel James Hougnon (Chair, U.S. section of the Board), included participants from both Canada and the U.S. and representatives of provincial, recreational boating and commercial shipping interests. The round table provided an informal opportunity for the various interests to share their concerns, issues, and ideas. Jean Murray chaired the evening public meeting, at which more than 160 people from both sides of the border shared their views and concerns with the board. The Board and the Commissioners of the IJC addressed the meeting. Stephen Lord, Chief of Waterways Engineering with CCG, gave an overview of the Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River system and Board operations. CCG's Waterways Development Branch, which houses the Board's Canadian Secretariat, provides weekly information about the water levels on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River on the Internet(www.islrbc.org). Some of the participants in the public meeting (from left to right): Scott MacCrimmon, Vice President, Ontario Marina Operators Association; Dalton Foster; Colonel James Hougnon, U.S. Chair, International St. Lawrence River Board of Control; and Jean Murray, Canadian Chair, International St. Lawrence River Board of Control. Ed Eryuzlu is Director of Waterways Development, Marine Navigation Services, in Ottawa. Matt Cook receives Exemplary Service Medal By Beverly Hicks, CCG Headquarters On June 28, Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) Commissioner John Adams presented, on behalf of the Governor General, the Exemplary Service Medal to Matt Cook of Marine Navigation Services. The CCG Exemplary Service Medal is part of the Canadian Honours System, and recognizes employees with 20 years of service, at least 10 of which are spent providing service in difficult or critical situations and involve potentially dangerous activities. Matt Cook has served on seven CCG vessels over the past 20 years. He served as Chief Engineer during 12 of those years. Matt Cook (right) proudly receiving the Exemplary Service Medal from Commissioner John Adams. Beverly Hicks is with Marine Navigation Services in Ottawa. Modern base welcomesstaff from 19th century fort By Richard Ashby, Central and Arctic Region Left with some empty office space following reorganization in 1992, the CCG base in Prescott has welcomed Parks Canada staff to its site. The base and the local section of Parks Canada, operating out of an historical fort in Prescott, reached a joint agreement to fill the empty space. The Parks Canada personnel were having a difficult time delivering a public program, housing full-time and seasonal staff and carrying on the day-to-day business of administration in Fort Wellington. The physical plant was badly outdated and staff were pressing the envelope yearly with advanced requirements for informatics technology and other administrative needs. The move to the base has allowed them to redesign the visitor centre, and build new exhibits, a theatre room and a gift shop. Staff now operate from a functional administration building and enjoy the benefits of purpose-designed building. "We are delighted with the move and ask ourselves, 'Why didn't we do this years ago?'" says Pam Buell, a Superintendent with Parks Canada. "The public benefits from the efficiencies of locating federal government services in one location." Ron Whitehorne, Prescott Base Manager and acting Superintendent of Facilities, says "Parks Canada has long been a Canadian Coast Guard client and this contractual arrangement has fulfilled the needs of both parties." The staff at the Canadian Coast Guard in Prescott believe that any opportunity to share resources with other federal organizations, and ultimately save tax dollars, should be explored. By recognizing the common interest in providing public service, efficiencies in operation and responsible financial management, the addition of Parks Canada to the location should indeed prove beneficial to all. Staff have received good feedback from the residents and municipal politicians on the collocation within the base. "This is just one more example of the type of innovation that is taking place in our bases so that we become not only part of the community we serve, but also give the department the best dollar return on investments," saysWhitehorne. Coast Guard base in Prescott. Display area in front of the office space occupied by Parks Canada. Richard Ashby is the Supervisor, Base Administration, in Prescott. Youth internships ­ yes, we have a few! By Bob Collier, Maritimes Region The Federal Public Sector Youth Internship Program (FPSYIP) has been extremely successful for Maritime Region since it began in November 1997. The $90-million program is administered by regional YMCAs and Career Edge. Through the program, government departments open up their doors to 3,400 young people between the ages of 15 and 30 to give them a 12-month learning opportunity. Selected individuals gain beneficial experience to improve their employability. They can use this experience on their resumes and often build relationships with government managers, who can then act as references. Under the leadership of Director David Parkes, Maritime Region's Technical Support Services has had more than 35 of these internships in positions such as electronic engineering technologist, inventory clerk, carpenter assistant, technical installer, travel clerk and administrative assistant. One of these positions is currently filled by Jennifer Cameron, who is interested in project management and technical tasks associated with technical services. Together with her mentor, Sheila Anderson, she is reviewing the thousands of training course history records entered into the national PeopleSoft database. Jennifer plans to complete this project prior to August 31 before her internship ends in mid-September. On behalf of all of CCG employees, thank you to Jennifer Cameron and all the FPSYIP interns who have contributed towards the success of the internship program. All the best of luck as you work towards your future goals and career aspirations. We hope that your internship with CCG has been rewarding and a great learning opportunity for you. Jennifer Cameron (seated), FPSYIP intern, and Sheila Anderson, internship mentor. Bob Collier is the Training Manager for Technical Support Services, Maritimes Region, and is the Regional Coordinator forFPSYIP. Canada's DGPS attracts Middle East visitor Philip Jewell, Radio Navigation Manager with Middle East Navigation Aids Service, came to the Newfoundland Region from his headquarters in Bahrain to discuss the Canadian Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS). He took part in discussions with Sun Wee, acting Chief, Navigation Systems, Technical and Operational Services, Ottawa, Kathleen Chafe, DGPS Project Officer, Technical Services, Newfoundland Region, and Mike Clements, Aids to Navigation Program Manager, Newfoundland Region. Site visits were arranged to the DGPS Control Monitor in St. John's and the Cape Race DGPS Station, located in Portugal Cove South. Jewell and Wee also visited the Cape Race LORAN C station and the magnificent Cape Race Lightstation (the Beacon of the North Atlantic) with Mike Clements. Middle East Navigation Aids Service has constructed a DGPS system very similar to the one built in Canada. The Newfoundland Region has taken a very active role in the construction and management of Long-range Aids to Navigation in Canada. It developed the GPS Assessment of Performance Program software, which evaluates DGPS station performance at all DGPS sites in the country. The Newfoundland Region also monitors all Canadian LORAN C chains in the country from its control station in St. Anthony. Standing inside the first-order lens of the Cape Race light (from left to right) are Philip Jewell, Mike Clements and Sun Wee . Updated: 18/02/2004 Important Notices Echo - The National Newsletter of the Canadian Coast Guard Canadian Coast Guard Echo - The National Newsletter of the Canadian Coast Guard May - June 1999 Laurentian Region honours its employees Pair tracks down DGPS fault to bring "wandering" vessel home Teamwork and the outstanding response to Saint John incident Laurentian Region participates in the preservation of MV Empress of Ireland The forgotten tragedy of the Empress of Ireland How are we doing? Organizational health being studied Green Book principles presented in Cairo Meet the Fleet Advanced fleet tracking at CCG Laurentian Region honours its employees By François Miville-Deschênes, Laurentian Region Last February, in Québec City, 28 Laurentian Region employees celebrated 25 years in the Public Service. Among them were 21 from the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG), including two from Regional Management, 10 from Operational Services, four from Technical Services and five from Marine Programs. After enjoying a cocktail get-together in their honour, organized by the Regional Management Committee, the honourees were joined by about 150 colleagues for dinner and the presentation of commemorative plaques. Throughout the evening, everyone took the opportunity to share memories and favourite anecdotes, reinforcing bonds of friendship forged over a long time. "I really enjoyed the evening," said René Gauthier, captain and Director of Operational Services. "The atmosphere was warm, and the people smiling and lively. I'm especially proud to have been with navigational personnel -- people I work with every day. So many of them turned out for this event despite the winter operations on board ships." All the honourees will soon receive a souvenir album showing highlights of the evening and their own picture. Remember that starting this year, the public service recognizes employees who accumulate 15, 25 or 35 years of service. The smile on the faces of 28 guests of honour says it all about their appreciation for the evening recognizing their 25 years of service. François Miville-Deschênes is Senior Communications Advisor in the Laurentian Region. Pair tracks down DGPS fault to bring "wandering" vessel home By Bert MacDonald, Maritimes Region In the last issue of Echo, we told you about the award-winning efforts of Ken Setchell and Bert MacDonald to solve a serious problem with the Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS). Below, Bert MacDonald, describes what he and his partner did that brought them recognition from their colleagues. Staff at the Louisbourg Lifeboat Station advised us that there appeared to be a problem with the GPS/radar system on the Spindrift . Part of the vessel's navigation system comprised a GPS (Furuno GP-70), a Differential receiver (CSI MBX-1) and a radar (Furuno 1510). The radar uses position information from the GPS to plot the vessel's position on screen. The difficulty was that the radar plotter showed the Spindrift taking random excursions, approximately 10 km from the wharf, even though it was tied up. Since this same data output fed position information to the Autopilot, we felt that there was a serious problem somewhere. Initially, we tried the standard approach, systematically replacing the components of the navigation system. When this had no effect, we tuned the MBX-1 to another Differential receiver (Cape Ray). This seemed to solve the problem, which meant that the culprit was the Differential transmitter on Fox Island. We then set up an identical system at our workshop and after monitoring for several days, came to the same conclusion. We went to the site and found a few minor problems with the tuning but nothing that would cause the random wandering we were experiencing. We checked with Engineering staff in Dartmouth who advised us that new software had been installed on Fox Island just prior to the start of our problems. We also advised Engineering staff in Ottawa who asked us to connect several GPS receivers to our computers and collect data. Eventually they found that the Fox Island DGPS was programmed to send out erroneous correction data (up to 10 km) when the satellites first come over the horizon. It also sent out a "do not use" command, which DGPS receivers were supposed to use and ignore the erroneous correction. Some receivers, ours in particular, did not, and it was using the correction information that caused the major jump in position. The end result was that there was a nation-wide NOTSHIP issued advising DGPS users to check with the manufacturer/supplier of their GPS receiver to ensure that it does not introduce this critical error. Bert MacDonald (left) and Ken Setchell (right) on board the Spindrift, testing the DGPS. Bert MacDonald is an electronic technician in Sydney, Nova Scotia. Teamwork and the outstanding response to Saint John incident By Don Hatcher, Maritimes Region During the early evening hours of February 25, 1999, just before staff shift change, Darren Gaudet, Michael Gilbert and Paul Toner, officers-on-duty at MCTS Saint John Centre, saw smoke coming from Partridge Island, situated at the mouth of Saint John harbour. Immediately, MCTS operational staff began a contingency plan call-out, which included contacting the fire department, police, 911, Fred Webster, the Officer-in-Charge of MCTS Saint John Centre (also assigned as on-scene commander), Roger Hache, Acting Supervisor of Technical Support Services at the Saint John Base, Tom Curran, Base Construction Supervisor and Carl Goodwin, Senior Coast Guard Representative. The on-coming duty watch, comprising MCTS officers Renaud Landry and Craig Middleton, was apprised of the situation during the watch change handover. Since the fire department was unable to respond, CCG staff, in consultation with the Commanding Officer of CCGS Cumella , Gerard Martin, decided to proceed to the area and survey the situation. The actions of this CCG team in responding to the situation are to be highly commended, especially, since this response was certainly outside of the normal course of duty. The smoke was coming from a grass and bush fire, which caused all on board the Cumella to wonder if perhaps someone was on the island. They were also worried about possible property damage to the island and the CCG facilities. As a result, Darren Gaudet, Roger Hache, Tom Curran and Jody Collette, a member of the Cumella crew, all carrying portable fire extinguishers, transferred to the island in a Zodiac fast rescue craft, which was operated by Stanley Fleet, another member of the Cumella crew. Once on the island, they doused some flame that was near the DGPS building and the helicopter landing pad. They then thoroughly searched the island and the breakwater using the Cumella 's searchlights looking for whoever might have set the fire, but they did not find anyone. The fire worked its way around the island and died out by the early hours of February 26. In the event that additional base resources had been required, Fred Webster, on board the Cumella , had staff available at the base and on standby (Paul Roberts, Rescue, Safety and Environmental Response, Jeff Lisson, Yard Foreman, and Scott Galbraith, Buoy and Field Maintenance Operations). Completing the complement on the Cumella was Gary Christian, Engineer. The next day, CCG staff inspected the island by helicopter and found that there had been no structural damage to any of the buildings, except some minor heat damage to the vinyl siding of the DGPS building. The MCTS Saint John Centre Operations Room: the communications and radar console area from where MCTS staff on duty sighted the fire on Partiridge Island. Don Hatcher is Acting Regional Superintendent of MCTS in the Maritimes Region. Laurentian Region participates in the preservation of MV Empress of Ireland By Michel Demers, Laurentian Region The Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) is supporting the efforts of the governments of Canada and Quebec to preserve an important part of Canada's maritime heritage. Because of its significance both from a cultural and a tourism standpoint, many organizations in the area have asked government authorities to step in to preserve the remaining traces of Canada's worst maritime disaster. Bringing special expertise and support, Laurentian Region, is collaborating with the Quebec Ministry of Culture and Communications and Parks Canada to protect the shipwreck (see "The forgotten tragedy of the Empress of Ireland " on page 5). A federal-provincial working group was given the task of defining a partnership that could stabilize the wreck, appraising its historical value, developing guidelines for the effective management of this cultural asset, and determining the roles of each partner (see below left). Several political, tourism, cultural and business organizations in the area decided to form a coalition to support the conservation of the wreck. On April 21, 1999, the Quebec Ministry of Culture and Communications designated the wreck "a historical and archaeological asset" under the Cultural Assets Act , thereby acknowledging the exceptional value of the wreck as well as its symbolic and historical interest. This is the first time Quebec has granted this status to a submerged asset. The working group mandate To ensure coordination between the two levels of government, to facilitate the exchange of information and to define the role of each participant in the project, private sector and public sector alike. To act as expert advisor to government authorities with respect to the application of legislative measures to regulate activities on the wreck of the Empress of Ireland . To be aware of the Canadian and foreign legislation relating to the protection of submerged heritage. To determine the knowledge needed for the appraisal of the wreck (e.g. inventory of artifacts and commemoration of the tragedy) and to acquire that knowledge. To develop a management policy for the wreck. To develop a communications strategy to disseminate information about safeguarding this wreck. To identify and implement measures to facilitate oversight and control of activities on the wreck. Michel Demers is the Receiver of Wrecks for Laurentian Region. The forgotten tragedy of the Empress of Ireland The wreck of the Empress of Ireland evokes a historical drama unique in the annals of navigation on the St. Lawrence. The fast, comfortable Canadian Pacific liner launched at Glasgow, Scotland in 1906. On June 29, 1906, she set sail on her maiden commercial voyage. A trip from Québec to Liverpool would take only six days. On the afternoon of May 28, 1914, the Empress of Ireland left the port of Québec for Liverpool. The next morning, the ship slowed off Father Point to drop the pilot who had steered her from port and then resumed her previous speed. About 10 minutes later, the lookout signalled a ship approaching from downriver. The captain of the Empress ordered manoeuvres to take a course parallel to that of the other ship. A bank of northeasterly fog was rolling in from the riverbank. The captain immediately dropped anchor, signalling the liner's position by means of intermittent siren blasts. Then the other ship, the Storstad , signalled that she was holding her course. On the bridge of the Empress , the captain glimpsed the masthead flares of the Storstad bearing down directly on his ship. The Storstad , a collier flying the Norwegian flag, was making for Montreal with 11,000 tons of coal aboard. Because it was very early in the shipping season, her hull had been reinforced against ice. When the Storstad reached the fogbank, the second officer was in command, and he warned the captain about the fog. When the captain took over the con, he saw the liner dead ahead and attempted to manoeuvre around her, but the collier could not resist the pull of inertia and tore into the liner's starboard side. The impact produced only a gentle tremor, like the quiver of a ship coming up against the jetty as she docks. But as the collier came free of the Empress , it left a four-by-fourteen-metre hole gaping in the liner's side, through which water gushed at a rate of more than 265 tonnes (60,000 gallons) per second. Less than 10 minutes after the collision, the Empress heeled over and settled on her starboard side. Despite the damage to her bow, the Storstad helped rescue shipwrecked passengers and crew. Only 14 minutes after the collision, the Empress slipped beneath the waters of the St. Lawrence. When she sank off Father Point, on May 29, 1914, the Empress took 1,012 passengers with her. How are we doing? By Sophie Bouffard, CCG Headquarters Do you believe your work is important? Are you taking initiative in your work? These are only two of more than 100 questions that Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) employees, as well as those from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), are being asked in a survey. The answers will enable Statistics Canada, on behalf of the Clerk the Privy Council, to evaluate the work environment in the public service. Between May 24 and June 15, every government employee is being asked to fill out a survey on work and workplace issues related to organizational performance. Employees will answer questions on various aspects of the working environment such as "communication with supervisor" and "continuous learning." The survey takes 15 to 30 minutes to complete. But why an employee survey? And why now? This is the first time that CCG's employees, as well as all federal public servants, are being asked to voice their opinions on important issues. By using just one statistically reliable measurement tool at a common point in time, the survey will provide the first comprehensive and consistent snapshot of work, workplaces and careers in the public service. It will also provide information to improve public service workplaces, as well as encourage dialogue between managers and employees. The results will be available to all employees in the fall, and senior managers have already committed to acting on them. Wayne Wouters, DFO's Deputy Minister, has said that all levels of the department will be involved in designing and implementing an action plan to respond to survey recommendations. Even though employee participation is voluntary, it is important to remember that the greater the number of participants the more accurate and representative the results will be. You will find further information on this initiative on Publiservice ( http://publiservice. gc.ca ). You can also contact the CCG champion, Jeannie Hann, at or the DFO champion, Jacques Clavelle. Sophie Bouffard is the editor of Echo. Laurentian Region Organizational health being studied By Anne Breton, Laurentian Region To improve the quality of working life and increase organizational efficiency, the Laurentian Region undertook many consultations with its managers and employees last summer. With the release of the results, managers had a clear picture of the problems inside the organization and identifying where work is needed and possible solutions. This step led to the Master Action Plan , which members of the Regional Management Committee presented to all employees on December 10, 1998. This document deals with four priorities: communication, trust, human resources and the new reality at CCG. Each branch has developed its own action plan that identifies the activities that would accomplish the objectives of the Master Action Plan . In May, the directors began presenting their branch action plans to their employees. All managers must be prepared to carry out the activities in their plans, integrating them into daily operations without increasing their employees' workload. For their part, employees can contribute by making suggestions or by proposing new ways to work by using the suggestion boxes installed for this purpose. Throughout the exercise, the unions have been consulted and have given their support to this effort. Because organizational health is important for Laurentian Region, it will be subject to vigorous follow-up. Anne Breton is a Resource Management Officer in the Laurentian Region. Green Book principles presented in Cairo By Lea Barker, CCG Headquarters I recently gave a presentation on the environmental principles in the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Green Book to a group in Cairo comprising of representatives of Egypt's ministry of tourism and various investors in the tourist industry. The occasion was one of a series of symposia sponsored for investors and intended to raise awareness of the effect of increasing tourism in the Red Sea, Nile and Mediterranean areas. The Green Book principles are very applicable to many aspects of the rapid development occurring in all these areas. I attended the symposium at the invitation of Orascom, an Egyptian company with which CCG is collaborating on a proposal for a traffic management system for the upper Nile river aimed at improving the safety and efficiency of cruise boat traffic. Other companies involved are Offshore Systems Limited of Vancouver and Cybectec of Quebec City. Jack Cole of the Technical and Operational Services Directorate provided the basis for my talk. Lea Barker presenting the Green Book environmental principles in Egypt. Lea Barker is Director of Marine Communications and Traffic Services at Headquarters. Meet the Fleet Dear readers; I am happy to offer you a bit of entertainment in this issue of Echo, as well as a chance for you to test your knowledge of the Canadian Coast Guard fleet. Trevor Whitehouse, from Technical and Operation Services in Ottawa, prepared the "Meet the Fleet" crossword. Here are some tips to help you successfully complete it: All the answers are names of ships currently in service (see list below). When a ship has a name such as Samuel Risley , only the surname Risley appears in the crossword answer. Some of the clues are obscure, but the range of answers is limited. I hope that you enjoy this game and that I can publish similar features in future issues. I always welcome new ideas for making Echo an interesting and appreciated newsletter. Thank you for your support and enjoy this crossword. Sophie Bouffard, Echo Editor Across 3. J.T. Harbour Tours 4. Titanic moment 6. One of the brothers-in-law 8. Five Dollars 10. Alberta at sea 11. Pear 13. Northern Cross 16. Football Supremacy 17. Ciovanni's ride 20. Lachine connection 21. On the beat Down 1. Still missing 2. Had to eat the dogs 4. Blown sea spray 5. Take two aspirins 7. Marine Unicorn 9. Merry Christmas 12. One of the "pathfinders" 14. Gotta keep moving 15. Canadian General 18. Cast adrift 19. Really "old salt" List of ships in service Advent Bartlett Bernier Black Cygnus Des Groseilliers Eckaloo Fox Franklin Fraser Grenfell Grey Griffon Harvey Hudson Larsen Laurier Louisbourg Manyberries Matthew Narwhal Pearkes Radisson Shark Simcoe Spindrift SRN6 St-Laurent Teleost Tracy Tully Wallis Advanced fleet tracking at CCG By Richard O'Laney, CCG Headquarters The second generation of a valuable tool is now part of CCG's suite of capabilities. Fleet Location and Graphics (FLAG) II is a graphical information system developed to track fleets of vessels. It offers users on land a near-real-time representation of a fleet's position as a set of icons overlaid on a large screen map display. In the beginning Originally, controllers in operations centres verbally reported and manually plotted vessel positions. Newfoundland Region evaluated a system called FLAG/DataHail in 1989 as a means to do this automatically. DataHail operated over high-frequency radio. When combined with FLAG, it enabled automatic position reporting of a fleet of vessels from shore. Controllers could manually add positions of other vessels to the display. CCG bought DataHail/FLAG and used it for several years, although it had to deal with technical problems and software bugs. Software and hardware incompatibilities resulting from CCG-DFO integration led to the introduction of FLAG II. FLAG II The original FLAG system had been designed to be compatible with various transmission modes, one being mobile satellite (MSAT). With the successful launch of the MSAT satellite, the resulting drop in HF radio use and lower satellite communication costs, CCG adapted FLAG/DataHail to MSAT. FLAG II can handle both voice and data calls. The unit on the ship sends a position report to the client/ server on shore through the MSAT transceiver, then returns to voice mode to await the next call. This feature allows the system to handle position reporting, accept control commands from shore and send and receive voice calls. The shore-based FLAG II client/ server, which is based on an off-the-shelf product called Locator, includes the following features: interactive monitoring of fleet actions using a chart display; alarms for any vessel whose position report is overdue; viewing of all or some of the vessels in the fleet; basic navigation, including estimated time of arrival/departure and distance calculations; and databases for position reports, recording commands sent to mobiles, alarm events log and vessel parameters. There is potential to add more capabilities to FLAG II (e.g. aircraft flight following and integrated e-mail in both a closed (CCG only) fleet environment or in any designated fleet (e.g. the military's)). It also has great potential as a tool in commercial fishing fleets as its pre-designated fishing zone alarming could save enforcement agencies valuable resources. As with FLAG/DataHail before it, FLAG II is vital for tracking vessels during search and rescue missions. This graph is showing the tracking of CCGC Sambro, CCGC Clark's Harbour and CCGS Sir William Alexander. Richard O'Laney is a Senior Project Engineer with Ship Systems, Electronics Engineering at headquarters. Answers for the Crossword Puzzle 1. Franklin 2. Bernier 3. SRN6 4. (horizontal) St-Laurent 4. (vertical) Spindrift 5. Grenfell 6. Radisson 7. Narwhal 8. Laurier 9. Advent 10. Manyberries 11. Bartlett 12. Eckaloo 13. Cygnus 14. Shark 15. Pearkes 16. Grey 17. Matthew 18. Hudson 19. Wallis 20. Griffon 21. Larsen Updated: 18/02/2004 Important Notices Echo - The National Newsletter of the Canadian Coast Guard Canadian Coast Guard Echo - The National Newsletter of the Canadian Coast Guard March - April 1999 Saving Grace Boating safety work nears fruition National Response Team passes third major test Strong lives up to name in SAR achievement Technical ingenuity and perseverance recognized International SAR arrangements pay off for French family New information on fatigue and motion effects on crews CCG technical expert takes on international role The unseen on scene Erratum Saving Grace By Brian Wootton, Pacific Region Fate was working overtime for the crew of the deep sea vessel Iolcos Grace on November 9, 1998. Just after starting an abandon-ship drill, a crew exercise turned into an all-too-real emergency. As the fully enclosed lifeboat swung clear of the boat deck, a cable snapped. The 10-m craft was sent plunging more than 20 m to the water below. Several people were thrown into the water, while two remained trapped inside. The survival clock began ticking. Fortunately CCG rescue specialists were already nearby, on board CCG hovercraft O45. The crew had just made short order of what turned out to be an abandoned beach fire near Vancouver's Wreck Beach. The crew were marvelling at how often a few people's carelessness leads to wasted time for rescuers when the words "Mayday Relay" crackled over the radio. West coast hovercraft crews normally consist of a pilot, a navigator and a rescue specialist. But a second lucky break, this time in crew scheduling, meant there was a second rescue specialist on board that day. Jim Garrett and John Merrett were already preparing first aid and hypothermia equipment en route when the radio reported that two, possibly three, people were trapped inside the overturned lifeboat, and divers were desperately needed to save them. Realizing the gravity of the situation, the two specialists moved quickly to their rescue divers checklists. The survival clock was winding down just a little faster now as the hovercraft sailed along at 45 knots -- only 10 more minutes to reach the scene. As the hovercraft came alongside the capsized hull, six people had already been rescued by CCG Cutter Manyberries and some good samaritans on scene, but two others had now been trapped for 30 minutes in the frigid waters inside the crippled lifeboat. Within two minutes of arriving on scene the specialists were under water. All the divers could hear through their communications lines was each other's breathing. What they saw gave them some cause to worry. The lifeboat shell was still intact but for one small opening where the escape hatch had been smashed, exposing jagged fibreglass and metal shards. Garrett carefully twisted and dragged his way inside the lifeboat, while Merrett took up a post at the entry point and tended Garrett's line. With their lights beaming inwards, both divers could see a person kicking to keep his head up in what turned out to be a very small pocket of air. Garrett was able to swim around damaged batteries and other debris and up to the frightened survivor. With much effort he got his own head up into the air pocket. As he started to explain to the bewildered survivor how they were going to get out, a new problem arose -- the victim did not speak English! With hand signals and lots of splashing, Garrett spent precious minutes teaching the bewildered man how to SCUBA dive. He defied the fellow's survival instincts further as he dunked him in an attempt to get him used to the air regulator. After several failed attempts, Garrett held his hand against the regulator in the man's mouth and wrapped his other arm tightly around his back. Together they descended into the darkness. They swam -- after a fashion -- back along the safety line until they came to the deformed escape hatch. Merrett, waiting there, was able to reach through the jagged hatch and grab the fellow's legs. It was hard work but he finally got the victim through the hole. With Garrett still inside the lifeboat, the three meter-long whip attaching the survivor's regulator to his tank was just short of reaching the surface. The survivor spit out his precious air supply and held his breath until he broke the surface, ending his first, and probably last, SCUBA lesson. Minutes later he was whisked away to a waiting ambulance. As with so many serious SAR cases, this story provides a happy ending for only some of the lead characters: the divers later recovered the second victim. Sadly, he had been killed during the lifeboat's free fall. Stop the clock... until next time. As the fully enclosed lifeboat swung clear of the boat deck, a cable snapped. The 10 m craft was sent plunging more than 20 m to the water below. CCG personnel and some good samaritans help out at the scene of the incident. Brian Wootton is a CCG captain and is Officer In-Charge of CCG Diving. Boating safety work nears fruition By Ann Whitely, CCG Headquarters The Small Vessel Partnerships Team is in the home stretch of its efforts to improve recreational boating safety in Canada. The Team, in partnership with the Office of Boating Safety, has been working hard to ensure that the number of lives lost each year on the water (about 200 in 1998) is significantly reduced. After four years of extensive public consultations on ways to improve recreational boating safety new regulations took effect April 1, 1999. The regulations include operator competency regulations and new age and horsepower restrictions. "It's about reducing the risk on the water by encouraging boaters to have the right attitude and learn how to be safe," says Cathy Sandiford, Director of the Office of Boating Safety. Other safety news for April 1? Amendments to the Small Vessel Regulations include new operating standards and minimum safety equipment requirements. Enforcement agencies will also be able to issue tickets to reckless boaters who put themselves and others at risk. Here's what regulation looks like: Unaccompanied children under 12 years old can operate a boat with a motor up to 7.5 kW (10 hp). Unaccompanied children 12 years old but not yet 16 can operate a boat with a motor up to 30 kW (40 hp). No person under the age of 16 can operate a personal watercraft under any circumstances. Unaccompanied persons 16 years of age and older can operate a boat with a motor. Starting September 15, 1999, anyone born after April 1, 1983 operating a boat with a motor on board will be required to have proof of competency. Starting September 15, 2002, a person of any age operating a boat less than four metres in length with a motor on board (this includes personal watercraft) will be required to have proof of competency. Starting September 15, 2009, anyone, regardless of age, operating any size of boat with a motor on board will be required to have proof of competency at all times. Ann Whitely works for the Office of Boating Safety in Ottawa. Environmental Response National Response Team passes third major test By Louis Armstrong, CCG Headquarters The Swissair disaster was the third time in the past two years that the Environmental Response National Response Team (NRT) was called on to rapidly deliver crucial equipment and personnel in response to an emergency. It was previously tested during the 1997 Red River flood around Winnipeg and the 1998 Eastern Ontario Ice Storm. The NRT was created to enable each region to rapidly deploy additional response equipment and personnel in the event of a catastrophic marine incident or a natural or man-made disaster. The NRT comprises experienced Environmental Response personnel who are trained to monitor, manage or assist during the response to regional, national or international incidents. Following the Swissair crash, 25 NRT members were cascaded on a rotational basis to the Maritimes Region for the recovery operation. A base was established at Peggy's Cove and was used for exclusion-zone enforcement and the recovery of debris and human remains. Another base was set up at the King Neptune Campground and was used 24 hours a day by the NRT to service all small craft used in the operation. The Shannon Hill Site served throughout the incident as the Environmental Response operations centre, where the financial, logistical, operational and planning decisions were made. The Maritimes Region did a first-class job as lead for the department in responding to the incident and providing support to other federal and provincial agencies, and showing how the entire organization could come together as one in a time of need. In addition, the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary was crucial to the success of the operation, especially during the first 72 hours of the response. In fact, members of the auxiliary were the first on scene on the night of the disaster. The Swissair incident was a major challenge for the National Response Team. The dedication, commitment and exemplary performance of the NRT members during this catastrophic incident in no small measure contributed to the successful response to the Swissair incident. Swissair crash recovery in Nova Scotia last September. This was the third test. Photo courtesy of the Department of National Defence The NRT delivered crucial equipment and personnel during the 1997 Red River flood around Winnipeg. This was the first test. Louis Armstrong was the NRT Coordinator for the Swissair crash recovery. Strong lives up to name in SAR achievement By Joanna Ng, CCG Headquarters Harry Strong added to his exemplary 20-year career with the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary (CCGA) by winning the 1998 Outstanding Search and Rescue (SAR) Achievement Award. "Harry Strong is the volunteer's volunteer," said the Honourable David Anderson, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, during the presentation ceremony at SARCENE 1998 in Banff last September. "He has earned an unparalleled reputation throughout the search and rescue community as a person whose primary concern is the well-being of his fellow mariners." Strong first started out as a commercial fisherman on the North Atlantic and has been a member of the Newfoundland CCGA since being recruited to provide SAR assistance in the Trinity and Bonavista Bay areas of Newfoundland in 1979. He has held numerous positions in the CCGA and is currently Chief Executive Officer, a position he has held for an unprecedented seven years. In addition to his many volunteer activities for the Auxiliary, he also runs a successful paint and hardware store with his son, Jeff, and operates an exclusive bed and breakfast with his wife, Carol. He has been mayor and fire chief of Old Pelican, Newfoundland, and represented the Trinity Bay area for the Newfoundland Fishermen's Food and Allied Workers' Union. Strong's impressive list of achievements also includes negotiating insurance coverage for Auxiliary members and vessels, assisting with the name change of the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary from the Canadian Marine Rescue Auxiliary, and successfully lobbying for a national CCGA uniform. He is well respected by his peers in the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary, the Royal National Lifeboat Institute and the Association for Rescue at Sea. Strong was also awarded the Canadian Coast Guard Commissioner's Commendation in 1990, and the Director, Search and Rescue, Certificate of Merit for Volunteers in 1992, and is an honorary Member of the CCGA National Council, the highest recognition awarded by the Auxiliary. The Honourable David Anderson, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans presents Harry Strong, with the 1998 Outstanding SAR Achievement Award at the SARSCENE awards dinner in Banff, Alberta, in September. Joanna Ng is a SAR Intern at Headqu