Government funds sailing plan app to support boaters’ safety

The minister of public safety and emergency preparedness, Ralph Goodale, has announced the Government of Canada is to make an investment of $595k in a Kelowna technology company to develop a sailing plan mobile app and dashboard.

The app will provide Canadian sailors, for the first time, with an intuitive, dedicated mobile app to support their safety.

Minister Goodale was joined by member of parliament for Kelowna–Lake Country, Stephen Fuhr, and Limnology Research Corporation (LRC) Consulting Solutions CEO, Dr. Nelson Jatel.

LRC Consulting Solutions will use the funding to develop a sailing plan mobile app and dashboard application that will make the process of creating and submitting a sailing plan easier and faster for boat captains.

In turn, this will make this large quantity of data more accessible and actionable by marine search and rescue operators, immediately increasing efficiencies in response to boating emergencies.

The funding was made available through the Search and Rescue New Initiatives Fund (SAR NIF). The SAR NIF aims to fund projects that deliver on the objectives of the National Search and Rescue Program (NSP).

The Government of Canada dedicates $7.6m each year to support new and ongoing projects under SAR NIF.Quotes

Minister Ralph Goodale, said: “Canada’s waterways are vast and can be dangerous, and if something does go wrong and boaters need help, it can be like searching for a needle in a haystack.

“With this app, boaters have a tool at hand that can make their journey safer. This tool will reduce the number and severity of search and rescue marine incidents by increasing the effectiveness of rescue missions and decreasing the response time to SAR incidents.”

MP Stephen Fuhr, said:This app will immediately increase the likelihood of saving lives on Canadian waters by improving the efficiency, accuracy and ease of completing sail plans for Canadian boaters.

“The Government of Canada is proud to support innovative initiatives like this one that make boating safer and results in more effective and coordinated marine search and rescue capacity.”

CEO, LRC Consulting Solutions, Nelson Jatel, said: “We have been working closely with Canadian boaters and marine safety professionals to develop a new Sailing Plan mobile app, providing an intuitive, usable and robust sailing plan reporting solution.

“Sailing plans are an important part of the marine safety toolkit, and this innovative project supported by Public Safety Canada SAR NIF funding will make the completion and submission of sailing plans easier and faster for boat captains and in turn make the large quantity of data more accessible and actionable by search and rescue staff.”i

Sailing in Canada facts:

  • In Canada, search and rescue is a responsibility shared by governments, the military, volunteers, and industry groups
  • There are approximately 15,000 search and rescue volunteers across Canada, representing ground, air and maritime domains
  • Canada’s search and rescue area of responsibility is 18 million square kilometres of land and water, and includes the longest coastline in the world.