Icebreaking Operations Directive 3: Fishing Harbour Breakouts

A PDF version of Icebreaking Operations Directive 3: Fishing Harbour Breakouts can be downloaded here. [PDF - 167 KB]

1.0 Scope

This administrative directive specifies the conditions under which Canadian Coast Guard icebreaking services may be provided for the breakout of fishing harbours.

2.0 Background

The Minister of Fisheries & Oceans, through various legislative means including the Oceans Act, provides icebreaking services for the safe, economical and efficient movement of ships in Canadian waters and to decrease the risk of flooding as a result of ice build-up.

3.0 Principles

3.1 Purposes

Icebreaking services are provided for the safety of life and property in flood plain areas, the safety of navigation and to improve the efficiency of traffic movement in Canadian ice covered waters.

3.2 Provision

Fishing harbour breakout services shall be provided as per Icebreaking Operations Levels of Service.

  1. Fishing harbour breakouts will be considered as a low priority icebreaking service;
  2. Consideration will be given to scheduling of this service to efficiently breakout a series of neighbouring harbours;
  3. Provision will depend on the user’s ability to reach its fishing grounds with minimal assistance; and
  4. Icebreakers will not be diverted from their normal operations nor be required to travel over an unreasonable distance to the harbour requesting the service.

3.3 Exclusions

Icebreaking will not be provided by the Coast Guard in the following situations:

  1. If a breakout may result in fishing vessels standing into dangerous ice conditions once clear of the harbour;
  2. If there is risk of damage to fishing vessels or harbour shore facilities; and
  3. In waters where geographic, meteorological or operational conditions would endanger Canadian Coast Guard crew, ships, equipment, or the vessels that requested the services.

4.0 Responsibilities

The Superintendent, Icebreaking, under the direction of the Regional Director, Maritime Services, with the advice and assistance of functional staff at National Headquarters, is responsible for the application of the provisions of this directive.

5.0 Reference Documents

Icebreaking Operations Levels of Service
Ice Navigation in Canadian Waters

6.0 Inquiries

Please direct any inquiries about this directive to the director of Operational Support, (613) 990-0341.