Salmon Arm Askew’s staff members Don Tingey, Cheryl Matte, Shana Phillips and Shawna Somers paid a visit to Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue Station 106 in Sicamous to deliver a cheque for more than $6,000 on Thursday, April 5. (Jim Elliot/Eagle Valley News)

New marine search and rescue flagship almost ready for action

Doantion from Salmon Arm Askew’s staff to help offset costs, fund education efforts

When people are in danger on the waters of Shuswap Lake or at any of the numerous cabins and campsites without road access, the first to respond are often the volunteers of Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue Station 106.

The station is only weeks away from officially putting their new rescue vessel into service and received financial help from the employees of the uptown and downtown Salmon Arm Askew’s locations. The donation of over $6,000 will help cover the costs of operating the new boat when lives are at stake, as well as on training exercises.

Related: Boating injuries, collisions occupy rescue crew

As their old boat has helped treat and transport over 225 patients since 2012, the Shuswap Search and Rescue station was a logical choice to receive a 2007 Titan rigid hull inflatable boat which had previously served at the Victoria station. Station leader Rob Sutherland said the boat would have cost $750,000 new so getting it from Victoria and only having to pay for refitting it and making some repairs has been a big help.

Sutherland said when the boat came from Victoria, where it was working in salt water, it had significant corrosion inside the engine bay and electrical issues that had to be fixed.

Related:Marine rescue fleet expands

The 40-foot vessel, equipped with a pair of diesel inline-six engines, is larger and more powerful, but also nimbler and more maneuverable than the older boat. The twin engines produce 880 horsepower and give the boat a cruising speed of around 8o kilometres per hour. The new craft is a jet-boat, making it more maneuverable and easier to operate close to other boats than the old propeller-powered craft.

The older boat will remain in use by Station 106 as a back-up vessel.

Of the approximately 25 station volunteers, seven are currently qualified to pilot the new boat.

The new boat has space for two seriously injured patients in a cabin in the bow and also room for as many as 30 injured people who are still able to walk. Sutherland said the larger boat will allow the station to respond better if a serious mass-casualty situation took place on the lake.

Along with a helm to steer the boat, the cabin sports navigation systems and screens that monitor the boat’s thermal and Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) camera, which can be used to pick up the heat signatures of people or boat engines when visibility is low.

Sutherland said along with the boat, station 106 has also purchased a rescue drone equipped with a FLIR camera and a grapnel which can be used to drop a life jacket to someone in distress.

The donation from Askew’s will fund day-to-day operations for Station 106 and also their education programs which aim to prevent emergencies before a rescue is necessary.


@SalmonArm
sports@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Complex-care facility adds 60 long-term care beds

Mount Ida Mews hosts grand opening of second phase in Salmon Arm

UPDATE: One dead after crash on Highway 97A near Armstrong

Police have confirmed that one person is dead following an accident on Highway 97A Friday

Multi-vehicle collision slows traffic on Highway 1

Trans-Canada Highway reduced to single lane between Salmon Arm and Sicamous

Music program discord attributed to lack of oversight

North-Okanagan-Shuswap schools struggle to retain musical excellence amidst many challenges

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

Girl heard saying ‘Help my Dad’ in suspicious radio message on Vancouver Island

Police asking for help following mysterious signals from somewhere between Comox and Sayward

Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

No treatment for highly infectious measles, says doctor

10 cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver as of Friday

Two more measles cases confirmed in Vancouver

It brings the number of total cases within the city connected to the outbreak to ten

Crews continuing to clear rock north of Summerland

Site has had no movement for the past eight days

No gas in Okanagan town as lone station closed for renovations

Falkland’s Petro Canada will remain closed for renovations until March 1

Developer makes an effort to help Okanagan students left homeless after flood

U-Two developer is making an effort to help university students who were left in a lurch

Most Read