A new Aid to Navigation (NavAid) in Prince Rupert’s harbour is the latest initiative to support the safe transit of vessels within the port of Prince Rupert. The Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) and Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that saw the two agencies partner on a project to introduce a new lighted NavAid in Prince Rupert Harbour.
“As we plan and prepare for growth in the number and size of vessels calling at the port of Prince Rupert, we’re identifying measures to increase the overall safety of vessels, mariners and the surrounding environment of our harbour,” said Gary Paulson, Harbour Master and Vice-President of Operations with Prince Rupert Port Authority. “Working with our industry partners like Canadian Coast Guard, the Port Authority is taking a proactive approach to ensure the Habour maintains its reputation for safe, secure and sustainable operations now and in the future.”
Roger Girouard, Assistant Commissioner with Canadian Coast Guard Western Region, commented that “This project is demonstrative of the close working relationship that exists between port stakeholders in Prince Rupert, and our ability to effectively collaborate on issues of marine safety.”
Through regular Port Operations Committee meetings, harbour user groups, like the BC Coast Pilots, expressed a need for an additional NavAid in Fairview Channel, the deepwater channel leading to Prince Rupert’s inner harbour. Following a NavAid review, CCG concurred with local users and identified that a fixed light at Philips Point would enhance the safe transit of commercial vessels.
Under the recently signed MOU, PRPA will fund the cost to have new NavAids like Philips Point built to CCG specifications, ensuring that the aids are built to a robust standard consistent with government owned aids. Today, CCG is responsible for the 15 NavAid sites throughout the Port of Prince Rupert and over 300 in British Columbia’s North Coast area.