Western Canada Marine Response Corporation says three spill response boats will be delayed from entering service because there is no money available to crew and provision them due to delays surrounding the Trans Mountain pipeline project. CHRIS BUSH/The News Bulletin

Western Canada Marine Response Corporation says three spill response boats will be delayed from entering service because there is no money available to crew and provision them due to delays surrounding the Trans Mountain pipeline project. CHRIS BUSH/The News Bulletin

Spill response vessels unloaded in Nanaimo

Spill response vessels designed for heavy weather won’t enter into service yet due to funding delays

Three coastal spill response boats unloaded in Nanaimo are becalmed by funding delays.

Western Canada Marine Response Corporation received a shipment of three spill response boats Wednesday, but delays in starting the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion will keep the boats from entering service.

The three nearly identical 300-tonne craft, christened Strait Sentinel, Coastal Sentinel and Gulf Sentinel, were built and sea-trialled in Singapore by ASL Shipyards and were hoisted from the deck and hold of the MV Happy Dynamic cargo ship at the Port of Nanaimo’s Assembly Wharf this week.

WCMRC refers to the craft as coastal response vessels, a new class of spill response vessel for the company, designed to work in heavier seas by Vancouver-based naval architecture and marine engineering company, Robert Allan Ltd.

“These are coastal response vessels and they are purpose-built boats for the West Coast,” said Michael Lowry, WCMSRC spokesman. “We wanted a boat that could handle the rougher weather out there … These aren’t fast boats. They’ll go about 10 knots, but they’ll get there in any kind of weather.”

But the boats won’t enter into service at their bases in Nanaimo, Beecher Bay near Sooke and Ucluelet, but will be laid up in Nanaimo.

Lowry said construction of the craft was started to coincide with construction of Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, which was halted in 2018.

“To meet the initial deadline, at the least the initial deadline, we had to begin the builds and those builds continued even after the announcement came out,” Lowry said. “Actually the boats had already been completed when the announcement came out, so we’ve received delivery, but unfortunately we can‘t bring them into service at the moment because there’s no funding. The funding for those vessels was going to come from the Trans Mountain project … so we’re not bringing them into the fleet. There’s no funds to hire a crew for them to operate them.”

RELATED: B.C. cities push for spill response base despite Trans Mountain decision

RELATED: Company planning to build oil spill response base announces 25-year lease with Port of Nanaimo

Instead, WCMSRC will put them into a “warm layup” state in which the craft will be stored in Nanaimo and their engines and other systems run occasionally to keep them operational. They will also have to be provisioned and outfitted with the equipment needed to perform their tasks.

“There’ll be a lot of work on them in the next little while,” Lowry said. “They need to be recommissioned to be brought back up to an operating state after the voyage. They need to be outfitted with equipment … so there will be activity on those boats for sure.”



photos@nanaimobulletin.com
Like us on
Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Spill response vessels unloaded in Nanaimo

Spill response vessels unloaded in Nanaimo

Just Posted

Capt. Alan Millbank, head of Nanaimo Fire Rescue’s Fire and Loss Prevention Division, takes photos of the scene of a blaze that heavily damaged two apartments on Wakesiah Avenue on Sunday, April 18. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
RCMP, Nanaimo Fire Rescue investigating suspicious apartment blaze

Fire destroyed ground-floor apartment, spread to second storey at Wakesiah Avenue complex

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry speaks at a press conference Monday, April 18. (B.C. Government image)
New COVID-19 cases tick down on the central Island

New cases held to single digits three days in a row

Chakalaka Bar & Grill remains open in defiance of orders from Island Health to close. (Cole Schisler photo)
Island Health seeks injunction against restaurant defying COVID-19 orders

VIHA says Chakalaka Bar and Grill also violating water and sewer regulations with RV hook-ups

Nanaimo RCMP hope the public can help them find a 16-year-old who has been missing since Sunday. (Photo submitted)
UPDATE: 16-year-old Nanaimo boy located safe

Teen had been reported missing last week and it was thought he may have left town

The Regional District of Nanaimo plans to make its operations more efficient as it works on long-term goals around carbon-neutrality. (PQB News file photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo works to become carbon neutral by 2032

RDN committee of the whole members endorse plan developed by consultant

In this image from NASA, NASA’s experimental Mars helicopter Ingenuity lands on the surface of Mars Monday, April 19, 2021. The little 4-pound helicopter rose from the dusty red surface into the thin Martian air Monday, achieving the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (NASA via AP)
VIDEO: NASA’s Mars helicopter takes flight, 1st for another planet

The $85 million helicopter demo was considered high risk, yet high reward

Families of two of three workers killed in a train derailment near Field, B.C., in 2019 have filed lawsuits accusing Canadian Pacific of gross negligence. The derailment sent 99 grain cars and two locomotives off the tracks. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Families of workers killed in Field train derailment allege negligence in lawsuit

Lawsuits allege the workers weren’t provided a safe work environment

(New Westminster Police)
4 youth arrested after 30-person brawl in New Westminster leaves 1 seriously injured

Police are looking for witnesses who saw the incident take place

South Surrey’s Paul Cottrell, who works with the DFO, tows a grey whale out of Semiahmoo Bay Sunday. (Contributed photo)
Dead whale floating near White Rock towed to shore for necropsy

Animal has been dead since at least April 15

Wickaninnish (Clifford Atleo) plays the drum while singing the Nuu-chah-nulth song on the court steps in Vancouver In a picture from April 2018. Photo credit, Melody Charlie.
Five western Vancouver Island First Nations celebrate legal fishing victory

Court ruling confirms Nuu-chah-nulth fishing rights in case dating back to 2003

Sunday’s storm rocked one of the ferries crossing Kootenay Lake. Photo: Dirk Jonker
VIDEO: Storm makes for wild ferry ride across Kootenay Lake

The video was captured by ferry employee Dirk Jonker

Dr. Bonnie Henry gives her daily media briefing regarding Covid-19 for the province of British Columbia in Victoria, B.C, Monday, December 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Toddler marks youngest British Columbian to die related to COVID-19

Child one of eight people to die from virus this weekend

Pharmacist Barbara Violo arranges all the empty vials of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines that she has provided to customers at the Junction Chemist which is a independent pharmacy during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto, on Monday, April 19, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C. to open up AstraZeneca vaccines for all people 40+, set up clinics in hot spots

A total of 13 neighbourhoods and communities will receive the AstraZeneca vaccine

Most Read