Safe Boating Guide
Transport Canada's Safe Boating Guide is the recreational boater's bible. It contains everything a boater needs to know about owning and operating a boat, including licensing and equipping both people and vessels, rules of the road, emergencies on the water, and references for further information.
The Safe Boating Guide contains information about the Pleasure Craft Courtesy Check Program and gives a list of all the equipment boaters are expected to have on board. To arrange for a check at DYC contact the local CPS Squadron.
The Guide also describes the requirement for a Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC) and a VHF Restricted Operator Certificate (Maritime).
To get a (free) copy contact the Office of Boating Safety at (902) 426-7729.
Pleasure Craft Operator's Card (PCOC)
Transport Canada requires everyone who operates a motorized pleasure craft to carry proof of competency and personal identification on board at all times. If your boat's motor/ engine is 10 HP or more, you must also carry the Pleasure Craft Licence.
(Alternate forms of proof of competency are: proof of having passed a boating safety course in Canada before 1 April 1999; an approved marine certificate; or, during a boat rental, a completed boat rental checklist.)
The NSYA offers the Canadian Yachting Association's PCOC test. For more information about testing contact the NSYA at (902) 425-5450 ext 312.
A PCOC is also available online through the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron (CPS-EPS) website at
Regattas in Halifax Harbour and the Bedford Basin
Regattas in Halifax Harbour and the Bedford Basin
We continue to encourage the Metro Clubs to notify HRM Police- Marine Section at least 24 hours in advance of any regatta to advise them of the name and contact details of the race Safety Officer. Further, HRM Police have been asked to make contact with on-the-water Learn to Sail instructors in coach boats while teaching to ensure the boats are fully equipped and that all students are wearing approved PFD's. The contact at HRM Policlis Staff Sergeant Greg Mosher who can be reached at (902) 456-1682.
Cold Water Shock
Cold water can significantly affect your chances of surviving an accidental immersion. The website www.coldwaterbootcamp.com has a lot of information on cold water shock including a 1-10-1 formula that refers to 1 minute of shock, 10 minutes of potential incapacitation and 1 hour for hypothermia to set in. Understanding the 1-10-1 principle will help you survive.
To learn more about surviving in cold water and see what really happens during cold water immersion visit the website and be prepared for an unexpected dunking in very cold water.
Safe Disposal of Marine Flares
DON'T touch or move flares or any other type of explosive such as: detonators, black powder, dynamite or military ordnance that is not in good condition (seeping, swollen, or broken). Call your nearest RCMP detachment for help.
DON'T put expired flares in with the regular garbage - they are explosives!
DON'T dump expired flares overboard - they could wash ashore and cause injury.
DON'T set off or discharge expired flares. They are dangerous and it is illegal to send up a flare distress signal unless actually in distress under the Canadian Shipping Act.
Local businesses that accept expired flares for disposal are:
DSS Marine, 71 Wright Ave, Burnside - 835-4848 ($4.00 per each Type A, B, C, or D flare, except there is free disposal of old flares with purchase of replacements.)
Spartan Industrial Marine, Thornhill Dr, Burnside - 468-2111 ($4.00 per flare, unless replacements purchased there, then disposal is free.)
Inflatable Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs) are becoming very popular with boaters and there is confusion as to when boaters are required to wear it. While the NSYA encourages all boaters to wear a PFD on the water, the regulations state that you have to be wearing an inflatable PFD for it to be approved on an open boat. If the boat is not open, then you only have to wear it while you're on deck or in the cockpit.
On larger boats those handling dock lines when departing or docking should wear PFDs as they are far more likely to need them then than when they are under way.
Inflatable PFDs are not approved for those under 16, or anyone who weighs less than 80 lbs (36 kg). They should be inspected for wear, ease of opening and general condition and those having an auto-inflation capability should be checked by an authorized service centre for erosion of the activating mechanism at least annually.
See the Transport Canada Safe Boating Guide (2011), pages 32 - 35, for more info.
Big Boats vs. Little Boats
Members are reminded that in accordance with the CSA 2001, Collision Regulations, Rule 9(b):A vessel of less than 20 metres in length or a sailing vessel shall not impede the passage of a vessel which can safely navigate only within a narrow channel or fairway.
Also, under Rule 18(b): sailing vessels shall keep out of the way of vessels engaged in fishing,e.g. lobster boats maneuvering to pick up a pot or trawl or fishing for tuna.
For those with racing programs we continue to encourage you to add the following to the Sailing Instructions for each regatta:
INTERFERENCE WITH SHIPPING
Any yacht that interferes with the orderly passage of a naval or commercial ship will be subject to protest by the Race Committee and may be denied entry to subsequent events following investigation by the NSYA. All yachts are encouraged to monitor VHF channel 68. Engines may be used in an emergency. Details are to be reported to the Race Committee, and requests for redress under rule 62 may be made.