During Thurs night training, the Fraser L/B came across 2 vessels near S19 in apparent difficulty. The 44′ ferro cement sailboat Van Kam with one person on board had lost power and was being towed by a small vessel that was having difficulty with the tow. Fraser took over and brought the vessel into Steveston and alerted CG radio. The sailboat had sustained some damage caused by the other vessel, apparently, they struck some pilings. This was also a wonderful opportunity for Ron, our coxswain in training under the watchful eye of senior coxswain David.
The person on the sailboat indicated they didn’t want to call a PAN PAN and were afraid of being charged for rescue. This highlights a common misunderstanding amongst many pleasure boaters. SAR is never charged, and the damage sustained could have been avoided if an earlier response happened.
On 23 Oct 2022, during a chum fishery patrol, the Delta Lifeboat received a call from CG Radio about a black disabled vessel (possibly a SeaDoo) near S23.
The RHIB was sent to locate and found the vessel close to Woodwards Landing. A low line was passed, and the vessel was towed until meeting Delta Lifeboat which towed it to Captains Cove Marina, where the RHIB took over and assisted the vessel to its slip.
On Saturday 10 Sep 2022 the CLI deployed both vessels for a fishery patrol to support a recreational and commercial fishery north of Sandheads. We counted almost 200 recreational vessels and some commercial vessels north of them. During the day a distress call came in and the Fraser L/B performed a search 2 miles west of the Fraser River’s north arm. As the distress call was not clear, as well as the position where the call came from, the Fraser L/B crew hailed some vessels to ask if they were aware of any vessel in the vicinity that needed assistance. None of them were aware of any vessel needing assistance. Later during the search, we were advised by Coast Guard that it was most likely someone pressing their distress button and not being aware they did this as they were not responding to calls from Coast Guard Radio. The Fraser L/B was stood down and continued their fishery patrol.
Delta Lifeboat sailed on 01 Sep 2022 to participate in the Victoria Classic boat Festival. En route, the lifeboat was tasked to join the search for a person lost overboard south of Fulford Harbour. DELTA L/B was tasked to conduct a shoreline search of the harbour. An hour later an unconscious male was located by a coastguard lifeboat off Portland Island and DELTA L/B was stood down. Unfortunately, the victim did not survive.
Continuing on for Victoria DELTA L/B ran into zero visibility fog. Lookouts were doubled and both radars were closely monitored. Several close targets were plotted and it was noted that no fog horns were heard from any opposing vessels.
After navigating through Baynes Channel a radio call from the converted fishing vessel ‘Contenda’ was received requesting a tow into Victoria. DELTA L/B returned to Cadboro Point and took the vessel in tow securing her in Victoria.
During the festival DELTA L/B served as the medical guard ship, working closely with volunteer members of St. John Ambulance who made a generous donation of an oxygen kit to the CLI. A few minor medical incidents were handled with John Horton assisting a lady with a badly scalded hand.
Following the festival, DELTA L/B slipped at 0600 on Monday for transit back to Ladner. While closing Zero Rock, lookouts reported sighting an abandoned skiff. Following an assessment that concluded no person was missing; the skiff was towed to Canoe Cove and secured. The transit to Ladner was conducted with no further incidents.
While in Victoria a reception was held on Saturday evening aboard DELTA L/B. Approximately 40 guests enjoyed friendship and camaraderie. Many Naval friends also joined us and Commodore David Mazur lowered the ensign during the Sunset Ceremony which was sounded by John More on the Bugle. A moment enjoyed by all. It is also noted that one of the invited guests who could not attend made a generous financial donation to the CLI.
Both FRASER and DELTA Lifeboats conducted safety patrols over the long weekend from 20-23 May 2022. As this was the first long weekend of the boating season we expected it to be fairly busy.
Lots of commercial traffic was observed on 20 and 21 May, with kayakers and very few pleasure boaters out.
On 23 May the Delta Lifeboat responded to a PAN PAN call from a pleasure craft that ran out of fuel off buoy S6 in the Fraser River. It was determined a tow was required to the fuel dock in Steveston as commercial assistance was refused.
Overall, it was a fairly quiet long weekend and we were happy to render assistance where required.