The Canadian Safe Boating Awards (CASBAs) are like the Golden Globe awards of safe boating. On January 11th the Canadian Safe BoatingCouncil hosted the annual CASBA gala to recognize the efforts of the general public, volunteers, professionals, companies, agencies and organizations that have distinguished themselves in the fields of boating safetyand environmental stewardship duringthe 2014 boating season. The winners were selected from a host of nominations received from the public at large, covering boating safety stories from British Columbia to Quebec. Canadian Power and Sail Squadron members, volunteers and safety partners won four awards! Bravo, Zulu, details here:
Stearns Rescue of the Year: Gavin England , Victoria Power and Sail Squadron Gavin England, is a 13 year old boy who was prawning in BC with his 77 year old grandfather. Their boat sank and Gavin, refusing to let his diabetic grandfather give up, started pulling him to shore. After reaching shore, Gavin walked over an hour on gravel trails, finding a stick shift truck, (never having driven before) drove to get help to save his grandfather. Accepting the award was Gavin England of Victoria Power and Sail Squadron.
Special Recognition Award for Media Outreach: Brent and Sara Morrison, Burnaby Power and Sail Squadron Brent and Sara are being recognized for leveraging local television program, Breakfast Television in July 2014 to do a spot on boating safety. They solicited the interest of City to create the feature for Breakfast Television, then developed the content, recruited spokespeople from their squadron and secured the vessels needed for on camera presence. The result was more than 8 minutes of compelling boating safety information delivered to thousands of Canadians. More information and the video is available here. C/C Joseph Gatfield accepted the award on the their behalf.
Ontario Power Generation Best Boating Safety Initiative: Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons CPS-ECP Emergency Equipment Education and Pyrotechnic Disposal Program An ongoing challenge is what to do with expired pyrotechnics (flares). CPS-ECP developed a disposal program and leveraged that activity into safe handling courses. The program was rolled out during the summer of 2014 across Canada, almost 10 thousand flares were collected (some dating back to 1965) and numerous boaters trained. The program is expected to continue in future years. Chair of the program, Mike Smith of Windsor Power and Sail Squadron accepted the award. Program details here.
Marine Industry Award: United States Power Squadron (USPS) and Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons (CPS-ECP) The USPS in conjunction with US Coast Guard created a boating simulator to teach boaters docking, working lines, open water operation and more and provide the opportunity to practice those skills before getting out on the water. CPS-ECP took the base virtual trainer, modified it for Canadian to be multi lingual (French and Chinese) and are now putting it into training across Canada. USPS Educational Officer Bob Brandenstein and CPS Foundation Chair, John Hinksman accepted the award. More information on the Boating Skills Virtual Training is available here.
The safety and enjoyment of some 15 million Canadians on our waterways every year is due in large part to individuals and organizations like these. Recognizing them is important, and telling their stories will inspire others. The Canadian Safe Boating Council (CSBC) is a registered charity, and its members and partners from all areas of the marine community include boat and marine product manufacturers, boating education organizations, water safety and marine law enforcement sectors. The Council’s goal is to work to ensure that the millions of Canadians who head out on the waters in canoes and kayaks, sailboards and sailboats, fishing boats, personal watercraft, power boats and cruisers are equipped with the knowledge they need for a safe day on the water.
Visit http://www.csbc.ca for a complete list of of winners.