Marine Communications and Traffic Services Centres - Reports

Quarterly Report: May 11 to August 10, 2017


  1. 1. Canadian Coast Guard monitors the performance of the MCTS systems.

    Status: On track
    • During the period of May 11th to August 10th, 2017, the technical communities of Coast Guard across all regions have responded with appropriate actions to 341 equipment outage reports affecting MCTS services. During this reporting period, 365 independent investigations and resolutions including preventive maintenance tasks were actioned across country.
  2. 2. Coast Guard and Unifor continue to work together in monitoring and resolving technical issues.

    Status: On track
    • A working group, co-chaired by the Coast Guard and Unifor was established and a Terms of Reference (TOR) was agreed upon. The working group meetings are be held on a quarterly basis to discuss the draft reports before their release.
  3. 3. Coast Guard is to proceed with the planned closure of the Comox MCTS centre with caution.

    Status: Completed
    • Completed May 10, 2016.

  4. 4. A risk assessment of the consolidation project will be completed on an annual basis.

    Status: On track
    • Compilation of items 4 a) to 4 d) will provide the data for the annual risk assessment.

      The annual risk assessment report will be submitted to the Minister, Fisheries and Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard and the Clerk of the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans scheduled for completion October 2017.

  5. 4. (a) An assessment of working conditions at the consolidated MCTS Centre;

    Status: On track
    • An audio analysis of Sarnia MCTS was completed during the 48 hour period of, August 5 and 6, 2017.  The findings of this analysis stated that noise level exposure is at an acceptable level as per Occupational Health and Safety Guidelines.
    • During the last quarter, a site visit by National and regional management concluded that the issue with the audio volume at Victoria MCTS is resolved. Management spoke to numerous MCTS officers, as well; investigative reports have concluded that there have been no missed calls due to the audio volume in the Operations room.
    • Data is being compiled by Coast Guard in order to determine the workload on operational MCTS positions for the MCTS workload analysis update at all MCTS Centres. An approved methodology will be used to complete the analysis for December 2017.
    • The departmental Mental Health Group will visit all 12 Centres and report back to NHQ. MCTS officers will be sent a survey on the Work Place Mental Health Factors in fall 2017 which will lead the discussions. The visits will begin in fall2017 starting with Placentia and Halifax MCTS centres. 
  6. 4. (b) An assessment of staffing levels on all shifts, records of overtime and records of staff attrition/turn-over;

    Status: On track
    • The analysis of the staffing levels shows that there has not been a major change from the last quarter with two MCTS centres that are in need of additional staff. Halifax and Prescott MCTS Center remains as the first priority in staffing. Coast Guard is working to mitigate these staffing shortages at all centres. A number of trainees are currently at centres and more will join in the coming months (see 4.(c)). 
    • Due to short notice on leave requests (sick, family related etc.) several centres experienced issues in fully staffing a number of shifts, up to 12 hours, where delivery of services had to be consolidated on the watch floor. All services were provided. Coast Guard is working to ensure centres are adequately staffed to deliver MCTS services taking into account recommendation 4.(a) on working conditions and workload variations.  
    • Overtime hours for this period increased in all regions. This is a normal situation with the increase in leave requests due to the summer season.
  7. 4. (c) An assessment of the efficacy of the MCTS officers recruiting process;

    Status: On track
    • The national recruitment pool created in spring 2016 now has approximately 10 candidates remaining. (All English essential.) An inventory MCTS ab initio recruitment process can be found on the Public Service Commissions’ job website.
    • On April 10, 2017, candidates were drawn from the inventory and after the first round of evaluations was completed a national pool of 27 candidates was created.
    • Trainees for a French language course that started on September 11, 2017 and for the upcoming English language course scheduled to begin October 23, 2017 have been selected from these pools.
    • There are 6 MCTS officer trainees currently working in MCTS Centres and 16 MCTS ab initio trainees at the CCG College completing MCTS Officer training.
    • The class that began in May 15, 2017 has 9 trainees remaining and will graduate on October 26, 2017. A new French language class started on September 11, 2017 with 7 trainees, 6 for C&A and 1 for Atlantic region. The final MCTS officer course planned for this fiscal year is scheduled to begin at the Canadian Coast Guard College on October 23, 2017. The Security clearances, Second language evaluations and Health Canada pre-placements medicals are being finalized for the 12 trainees.
  8. 4. (d) An assessment of the nature, scope and causes of communications system outages, noting unique and recurring issues;

    Status: On track
    • A total of 341 equipment outage reports were filed, reporting 365 system outages, of which 27 of these reports were related to the MCTS Communication Control System (CCS). This averages to 9 CCS related issues per month for this reporting period.
    • Coast Guard has been monitoring and responding to the equipment outages reported by MCTS Centres across the country. Over 65 percent of site outages were caused by third party telecommunication issues. Various routine corrective maintenance work has been performed by Coast Guard technicians at the radio sites, as well as on communications equipment located at the MCTS Centres. Corrective measures were also applied by adjusting the system software parameters and operational mode of the radios in order to eliminate conditions and to prevent potential echo effect at the MCTS operator positions.
    • Data on each MCTS system is being collected at the 12 centers and at regional technical service centers ensuring national monitoring and coordination of efforts on solutions.
  9. 5. Reports compiled by the post-consolidation assessments (included in Recommendation 4) to be submitted to the minister of Fisheries and Oceans, the Coast Guard and the House of Commons SCOFO on a quarterly basis for the next 24 months.

    Status: On track
    • All reports will be submitted to the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard and the Clerk of the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans.

  10. 6. Fisheries and Oceans Canada establishes a mechanism for continuous feedback from stakeholders on the overall performance of the MCTS system across Canada and be part of the department's annual performance report.

    Status: On track
    • MCTS performance is a standing agenda item on the National and Regional Marine Advisory Boards. No issues have been forth for action to MCTS Operational Support this reporting period.