VHF Course (Restricted Operator Certificate Maritime, ROC-M)

This two evening course is scheduled  for May 22nd and 29th.

This course includes instruction and the course materials (complete package with CD), and covers Digital Selective Calling (DSC).  This course will prepare you for the Restricted Operator Certificate (Maritime) exam. The exam is administered on the last second day. Successful completion provides you with a Restricted Operator Certificate (Maritime), including DSC.

To operate a maritime radio, you need the certificate.  It is the law!  The Maritime Radio course teaches emergency radio procedures, as well as everyday operating techniques.

Register with John Mason at least a week in advance so course materials can be ordered.

705.342.1315 OR

Cost: $75.00

Does Someone Need A Power Squadron Refresher?

A couple of recent marine accidents make me wonder if some of the professionals need to take a Power and Sail Squadron refresher course. Perhaps navigation?

In the first case a professional pilot working in San Francisco Bay crashed an empty oil tanker into the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. Apparently the damage was ‘relatively’ minor, but it is still somewhere north of $500,000. The pilot in question has had a few more ‘oops’ events in the last few years. Looks like he could use a navigation refresher. Here are some details.

The second more serious accident happened in New York City as one of the commuter ferries rammed into the dock injuring at least 57 people, 11 of them seriously. There may be some extenuating circumstances, but it still would be good for them to take a refresher. Here is a link to more information.

Taking a course with the Parry Sound Power and Sail Squadron is a great way to learn important navigation and boat handling skills from experienced boaters and sailors. Here’s a link to more for more information.

Parry Sound October 2012

Still Need Santa Claus Parade Volunteers

Please contact us if you are interested in participating in the Parry Sound Santa Claus Parade as part of the Parry Sound Power and Sail Squadron entry. In partnership with Sail Parry Sound we will be towing a 21′ outboard with lights and music behind a pickup, with a small sail boat in the back of the pick up.

We have room  for a couple of more people on the boat, and unlimited room for people to walk along with the float. All that is required is two feet, a heartbeat, and a life jacket to be worn over your winter jacket.

We are promoting boating safety and our in-town courses that start after the holidays.

Give us a call at 705/774-9350 or 705/342-1315, or email, if you are interested.

White Squall – A Reprise?

Those of you who attended the Squadron’s movie series last winter will remember the movie – White Squall. It concerned the unexpected and tragic sinking of the brigantine style training ship The Albatross. A short summary of the movie and the real life story can be found at the earlier post.

This movie is brought to mind by the similarly tragic sinking of the HMS Bounty as it crossed the path of Hurricane Sandy. The cause of the sinking is easily understood, a hurricane, rather than a mystery, as it was with a presumed white squall that hit The Albatross. Fortunately the crew of the HMS Bounty saw what was coming and were better prepared. There is only one reported death, although it seems the captain who is missing, most likely has perished. Even survival suits and life jackets can only provide a limited amount of protection when we move into late October temperatures.

This type of accident is not supposed to happen, but it does much too often. That’s why we need to know how to operate our boats, why we need to carry at least the legally mandated safety equipment, and why we should always have a rehearsed plan for handling an on-water accident/disaster.

It’s time to think about getting the knowledge you need to operate your boat safely. That means much more than just having ‘The Card’. We’ll soon be posting information on the courses that will be offered by the Parry Sound Power and Sail Squadron in 2013. Register, learn to boat more safely, and have fun out on the water.

Facebook Page – Up and Running

We have our Facebook page up and operational. For many of you this may be a much easier way to keep up-to-date on happenings on the water in the Parry Sound area and Squadron activities.

Our page can be found at “Parry Sound Boating”. Please take a look and like our page so that you can receive a direct feed of the latest news.

Have something to post; articles, boating links or photos? Send a message to to get it on our Facebook wall. Want to post on a regular basis? Let us know and we can provide you with editorial privileges. Until we are proven wrong we’ll assume that more information is better than too little.

Oh, and a safety tip. Don’t forget to keep an eye out behind you. Things can ‘sneak’ up and surprise you. If we hadn’t seen it our self we would have thought this was a case of ‘jumping the shark’. Boat safely.

PWC meets boat, no one wins.

Coast Guard Radio – Changes Planned

The federal government plans to close the Coast Guard Radio Station at Thunder Bay and move the services it provides to Sarnia by 2014.

Thunder Bay Coast Guard Radio is a considered by many boaters to be a vital communications link for marine traffic on Georgian Bay.

The plan is that Sarnia will monitor VHF  Channel 16, the International Distress Channel, for the Canadian waters of  Lake Superior, St. Mary’s River, the North Channel, Lake Huron, Georgian  Bay, the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers, Lake St. Clair, and the western portion of Lake Erie as well as broadcast important weather and safety information.

CAW Local 2182, which represents Thunder Bay Coast Guard Radio, is presently mounting a public awareness campaign, to state that moving these communications services further away from the areas they serve as a cost cutting measure may put lives at risk.

They are asking that boaters who feel strongly about this issue write their MP.

Safety Check – Saturday July 21st

John Mason, Andy Devos and I were at Gordon Bay Marine and Hamer Bay Marine this Saturday to do courtesy safety boat checks (CPS Recreational Vessel Courtesy (RVCC) Program). This basically involves checking recreational boats to ensure they are in compliance with the mandatory safety equipment requirements. If they aren’t we let the owners know what what is required to be in compliance. Those boats that are in compliance are issued stickers for 2012 indicating they have been checked by the Canadian Power Squadron Courtesy Program. It might not help is they are stopped by the OPP, but at least they know they should pass, and where all the safety equipment is stowed.

We managed to ‘pass’ about a dozen boats while we were at the marinas. In general all the boats we checked met the applicable safety requirements. In a couple of cases where the boats were short of the necessary equipment they were able to pick up the equipment at the marina shops, and received their safety sticker. In many cases there was a little bit of a ‘hunt and seek’ process to find the equipment. That doesn’t bode well for an emergency where actions need to be taken quickly. But the courtesy check alerted them to this issue.

The most common ‘failure’ I saw with the boats did not relate to safety. Rather it concerned carrying their boat registration. This is a newer requirement and is similar to an auto vehicle registration. If you have it keep a copy on board. If you don’t you need to contact Transport Canada for a copy. They should be able to provide you with a copy of the registration document if you can give them your vessel’s registration number (the number on either side of the bow). If the boat is not registered in your name, perhaps a second hand boat purchase, they will require you to transfer the boat to your name and at the same time perhaps pay the necessary taxes. Regardless, if you are stopped by the OPP and aren’t able to produce a pleasure craft registration document you are liable for a fine of $250.

So better safe than sorry. Boat safe, stay safe.

Jo B – Communications Officer