14 November 2014
Posted by: Marc-Andre Poisson
You are on vacation with your family and decide to board a ferry to get to a Canadian resort destination. Once the crossing is under way, you begin to wonder if the vessel has adequate emergency equipment in place and if crew members would be able to take care of you should the ferry sustain damage. You take the opportunity to ask a member of the crew where you should go and what you should do in the event of an emergency. Unfortunately, this person doesn't know. You then spend a few anxious moments before getting a satisfactory answer from a senior officer. Throughout the trip, you have doubts about the emergency preparedness of shipboard personnel and you would like to report your concerns. You would also like to inform the authorities anonymously. What can you do?
The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) administers a program called SECURITAS that enables you to report—in confidence—concerns you may have about safety in the marine, pipeline, rail and air modes of transportation. The incidents and potentially unsafe acts or conditions you report through SECURITAS are not always reported through other channels.
The program was put in place to obtain reports from passengers or workers. For example, in the area of marine transportation, you can report an occurrence or situation if you are a ship’s officer or crew member, a shore repair crew member or maintenance engineer, a harbour master, a wharfinger, a stevedore or a pilot. The same applies to other modes of transportation: anyone involved in any way with the safety of personnel and passengers may report dangerous conditions.
When the reported observation is confirmed to represent a safety deficiency, the TSB forwards the information, often with its suggestion for corrective action, to the appropriate regulatory authority. Sometimes the TSB contacts specific transportation organizations, companies and/or agencies directly if they are the ones best placed to correct the problem, but it will not take any action that could reveal the reporter's identity.
For more information on how to get in touch with the TSB, please refer to our brochure, animation or Web site. You may also contact us directly and in complete confidence via the following numbers or e-mail address:
Marc-André Poisson is Director of Marine Investigations. He holds several college and university diplomas obtained in Canada and Europe. A professional mariner, he also has command at sea experience and has been an emergency responder. Marc-André is married and is the father of two girls.
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