Wednesday, June 14th, 2017
Jamie’s Whaling Station Receives Transportation Safety Board’s Report on the Capsizing of the LEVIATHAN II
Tofino, British Columbia - Earlier today the Transportation Safety Board issued the Marine Investigation Report into the capsizing of the LEVIATHAN II. Jamie Bray the owner of Jamie’s Whaling Station has issued a video statement in response to the report. The video can be viewed here, and a transcript of the video is below. We know that on October 25, 2015, things went very wrong during what was supposed to be a routine trip. The TSB report has confirmed that the only significant factor causing the accident was the extreme circumstance of a large breaking wave hitting the starboard quarter of the vessel. The TSB’s conclusion is that the vessel’s stability met and even exceeded Transport Canada’s stability standards.
Although safety has always been at the forefront for Jamie’s we recognise the ocean is an unpredictable environment and have been working to see where further improvements could be made. Some of the measures we have taken since the accident include:
- In addition to the Transport Canada required lifejackets already onboard our vessels, we have invested in manually inflatable Personal Floatation Devices (PFDs) to be worn by passengers when on outer decks on our vessels. Canadian law does not require people on these vessels to wear a PFD but Jamie’s Whaling Station reached the conclusion that this was an increased measure of safety that could be taken for our passengers and crew. - We invested in additional floatation devices to be located in areas of the vessels which could easily float free in case of an accident. - All of the regular safety drills required by law were being performed before the accident. After the accident, the experiences and recommendations of the crew were incorporated into the drills to make them more valuable.
- Although not required by Transport Canada regulations, we have reinstated the use of Electronic Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBS) on all our vessels, including zodiacs. - We have enhanced our scheduled radio call in procedures between our offices and all tour vessels. - Made improvements to make it easier to launch life rafts on our vessels by installing cradles that do not require lifting by the crew. - Improvements were made to the extensive safety management practices we already had in place, including improving and streamlining our bi-weekly safety drills.
We will continue to review all the recommendations that have been made by the Transportation Safety Board and determine if there are any further precautions that should be taken. We know that lives were lost and appreciate that no amount of reflection or promises can bring those people back to their loved ones. We will continue working together with our industry to ensure we all provide the safest possible experience to our guests and ensure we not only meet, but exceed safety regulations. We know the well being of our passengers and crew depends on us and we take that responsibility seriously.
The owner, managers and crew of Jamie’s Whaling Station want to extend our most sincere gratitude to the communities of the West Coast and our guests for all of the support they have continued to show us. We have always been proud to be a part of our small community and even more so now.
Transcript of Video Statement by Jamie Bray, Owner of Jamie’s Whaling Station Issued: June 14th, 2017
Hello. I’m Jamie Bray, the owner of Jamie’s Whaling Station.
On October 25, 2015, one of our vessels, the Leviathan II, capsized after being hit by a large unexpected wave. Despite the heroic search and rescue efforts by our crew and our community, 6 lives were lost. Our thoughts continue to be with all the families impacted by this tragedy.
That day reminded all of us just how unpredictable that the ocean can be and the tragedy of October 25th will never fade from our memories. Tofino is a small town and Jamie’s Whaling Station is a family run company that I started here nearly 35 years ago.
Today we have heard from the Transportation Safety Board on the results of their investigation into the accident, and I can assure everyone that we will take their recommendations seriously. The TSB has said there are areas that we can improve on and we will.
Since the accident, we have been working with the industry to continue improving safety. We have put more life saving equipment on all our ships and continue to do extensive training with our crews and incorporate all that we have been able to learn from this tragic accident.
Jamie’s Whaling Station is a company that bears my name. As the founder and President, I want to assure you that nothing is more important to me than the safety of our customers and crew.