Latest Type I Sea Trials
The newest Type I commenced sea trials January 19 on a blustery day off Sidney. The latest Type I was built for RCMSAR Station Victoria and sea trials were conducted by Bruce Falkins, Earl Shirley and David Best. The vessel performed well. Final delivery is expected at month’s end.
As standard gear, RCMSAR Victoria is equipped with the AIS-based Data Marker Buoy; the DMB shows on the navigation screens as an AIS target with Course over Ground (COG) and Speed over Ground (SOG) data.
The Type I vessel provides a safe working platform for RCMSAR volunteer crews through the shock-mitigating ICE console. Both Type I and Type II vessels have significantly “beefed up” hulls as compared to older vessels, which provide volunteer crews with additional protection.
Data Marker Buoy Update
The AIS-based Data Marker Buoy is now installed and fully functioning on four rescue vessels at RCMSAR stations in West Vancouver (two vessels), Nanaimo and Victoria.
The AIS-DMB operates on channel 15 and appears on the navigation screens as an AIS target on any vessel equipped with an AIS receiver similarly tuned to channel 15. Aside from knowing exactly where the DMB is located, the SOG and COG are constantly updated.
In addition to use as a data marker buoy, the DMB can be tethered to MOB poles, mannequins and like items deployed during training to ensure they are located and recovered.
The AIS-DMB was deployed as part of the October 30, 2017 search and successful recovery of a person in the water.
The Region has applied for a Search and Rescue New Initiatives Fund grant from Public Safety Canada to purchase and install the system on all RCMSAR vessels over the next 12 to 18 months. The intention is to have the installation professionally done. Word on the funding request is expected in the next few weeks.
Priority for installation of the AIS-DMB will be Type II, Type I vessels first as wiring/installation is relatively straightforward. On older vessels access to navigation system wiring may be more challenging and may have to be done as part of the 10-year refit. A stand-alone AIS DMB system housed in a weatherproof “Pelican” case (prototype shown below) may be an option.