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Marine Safety Advisory Letter No. 02/18

Place du Centre
200 Promenade du Portage, 4th Floor
Gatineau QC  K1A 1K8

Letter addressed to:
Transport Canada, 1000 Islands and Seaway Cruises, Gananoque Boat Line, Kingston 1000 Islands Cruises, and Rockport Cruises

Re :

Marine Safety Advisory Letter No. 02/18 – Safety Issues on Passenger Vessels
Navigating in the Thousand Islands Area

On 08 August 2017, at approximately 1250 Eastern Daylight Time, the passenger vessel Island Queen III was on a cruise in the Thousand Islands area of the St. Lawrence Riverwith 274 passengers on board when it made bottom contact off Kingston, ON. The vessel’s steering was damaged and the steering compartment sustained water ingress. There were no injuries or pollution. The vessel was able to return to the dock approximately 40 minutes later. The Transportation Safety Board of Canada investigation into this occurrence is ongoing (TSB Occurrence M17C0179).

The investigation thus far has identified safety issues relating to emergency preparedness, passenger management, lifesaving equipment, and evacuation procedures. The TSB had reasons to believe that these safety issues might also be present on other similar vessels in the Thousand Islands area. As a result, on 08 and 09 October 2017, TSB investigators visited four other vessels operated by four different companies in the same geographical area and identified the following safety issues on one or more of the vessels:

Emergency and passenger management

Lifesaving equipment

Muster stations and passageways

Other observations

The aforementioned is provided in advance of the 2018 cruise season so that you may take whatever measures are considered appropriate in the circumstances. The TSB would appreciate being advised of any such action. Moreover, an investigator may follow up with you at a later date.

A similar letter has also been sent to each of the four companies where some of these safety issues were identified.

Yours sincerely,

Original signed by

Marc-André Poisson
Director of Investigations – Marine


Background information

Occurrence No.