Report Calls for Risk Mitigation for Vessels in Canadian Arctic Following a Grounded Ship

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The Transportation Safety Board of Canada is calling for compulsory risk mitigation measures for vessels operating in the Canadian Arctic after a passenger boat ran aground almost 3 years ago.

The vessel Akademik loffe was grounded in the western Gulf Boothia around Kugaaruk, Nunavut, with 61 crew members and 102 passengers on board in August 2018.

The coast guard, together with the Canadian military, evacuated all passengers and the ship had serious damage to its hull.

It additionally spilled 81 liters of fuel oil into the ocean.

A report posted Friday by the safety board says the vessel went through a part of the Canadian Arctic that had not been mapped to modern standards, and where none of its crew had ever been.

The ship then entered shallow waters where it sailed for more than 4 minutes before it was grounded due to the fact that its alarm system that detects low water had been turned off.

The board additionally says the vessel’s safety operations did not meet the international standard and emergency procedures for the boat being grounded did not exist.

Federal Transport Minister Omar Alghabra, was unavailable for an interview with the media. A spokesperson for the minister said in a statement that the government welcomes the board’s report.

“We [take] all incidents involving marine safety very seriously,” the statement said. “We remain committed to working with the marine community and passenger vessel operators to continuously enhance the existing safety requirements of all passenger vessel operations in Canada.”

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