Transport Canada has issued a $6,000 penalty to the Canadian Coast Guard Ship ‘Sir William Alexander’, for an alleged non-compliance with the temporary mandatory slow down in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
The vessel owner has 30 days to pay the penalty or to ask the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada to review the facts of the violation or the amount of the penalty.
In August, the Canadian government took action to ensure navigational safety and to protect the marine environment, due to the increased presence of whales in the area, by implementing a temporary mandatory slow down of vessels 20 metres or more to a maximum of 10 knots. The speed restriction applies to vessels travelling in the western Gulf of St. Lawrence, between the Quebec north shore and just north of Prince Edward Island.
Recently, Transport Canada has issued a $6,000 fine to two more vessels, the ‘Seven Seas Navigator’ and the ‘Petalon’ for speed limit violation.
“Canada takes the protection, conservation, and recovery of endangered species very seriously. The recent deaths of several North Atlantic right whales in the Gulf of St. Lawrence are extremely concerning. Transport Canada will not hesitate to enforce the speed restriction in the Gulf of St. Lawrence,” said Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport.
Canada has been demonstrating a general commitment to whales’ protection, with Vancouver port taking the lead in reducing underwater noise.