Canada Day long weekend safety patrol – July 2021

The CLI conducted long weekend marine safety patrols with both the Delta and Fraser Lifeboats providing all-day-long coverage. This weekend was fairly busy with more recreational boaters out on the water. Wind warnings were issued for the Strait of Georgia on Saturday 03 Jul 2021 and the crew got to handle moderate swells between Sand Heads and the Iona Jetty off Vancouver International Airport.

On Sunday 04 Jul after checking the area around Sand Heads the Fraser Lifeboat headed back to patrol the river when they noticed a small tug making erratic movements swaying from left to right. Fraser L/B stopped to investigate and were flagged down by the tugboat coxswain who asked for a tow to Steveston harbour because his rudder was not responding to helm corrections. It was either hard starboard or hard port. Fraser L/B took them in tow, but because of the erratic behaviour, the Fraser was pulled left and right and was also fighting the river current. Because of this behaviour, there was a risk of us pulling the tug over; however, by adapting speed they managed to tow the tug to Steveston Harbour. There the tugboat coxswain decided to cut the tow line and use his skiff to pull himself to his mooring dock at which time the Fraser stood down. The tug coxswain advised the tug just had a refit and it looked like the hydraulic line filling the reservoir was undersized causing its steering issues.