Accessible Version of video: Canadian Coast Guard is modernizing, innovating and improving its service delivery


Narrator: Integral to the Coast Guard mandate is a commitment to ensuring the safety of our waterways and the individuals who travel on them. As the Coast Guard evolves to adapt to changing times and makes better use of new technology, safety continues to play the leading role. Our latest efforts to improve follow a trend of innovation that begins several years ago with the explicit goal of improving services to mariners.

François Boulanger: The Marine Traffic and Communications Services, which we call MCTS, is the ears of the Coast Guard. We have many antennas, many sites across the country, along the St. Lawrence River, the Pacific, the Great Lakes sector, the Maritimes sector, to listen to the marine distress calls on VHF or HF or MF. The response to the mariner in distress will be immediate.

François Boulanger: With the modernization of the Communication Control System, CCS, we will be able to do exactly the same job with 12 centres across the country. The service to Mariners will not be affected. As for modernization of the equipment, it would be bringing into the 21st century the equipment we have in the centres that some has since the 1990s. The CCS, Communication Control System, in some centres are still with switches, which the new system will bring them to the new technology with touch screen equipment. It’s also to integrate other technologies like text to voice, marine communication broadcast and logging system.

François Boulanger: One great example possibly of integration is the radio maritime continuous broadcast system. Right now, what we do is the officer receives twice a day the weather from Environment Canada, reads it, tapes it on the old system, re-listens to it to ensure that it is well said and then broadcasts it. With the new system, the Environment Canada weather will be received, automatically be implemented into the new system. The officer on shift will have more time to concentrate on the importance of the maritime distress calls instead of doing other tasks. They will have the training and they will have to pass the familiarization test to make sure he is able to respond as the old centre did.

Commissioner: While I can appreciate that change can sometimes be difficult, finding ways to improve and adapt to new realities is something we will always strive for. The Canadian Coast Guard’s top priority has always been and will continue to be the safety of mariners. Members of the Canadian Coast Guard have devoted their careers, and tragically even given their lives to ensure public safety. This commitment is unwavering and will continue to triumph as we evolve.