June 3, 1960

CCF

Douglas Mason Fisher

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Fisher:

May I ask the minister whether he could just indicate where in the estimates we can get some kind of estimate of the people who are working in this particular field across the country so that we can get some idea of the scope of the present service and the amount of money that is spent on it?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

Our service is supervisory and it is here in Ottawa. As I say, there is a small committee that is working all the time to provide information for those who need and can best use that information. The people who do the policing are the provincial police and the R.C.M.P. Our department does not have a police force to enforce these regulations. We are available at all times to give advice. We send out this pamphlet "Safety Afloat". We conduct meetings once a year of all interested parties. We are prepared to give advice, assistance and help at any time; but we cannot operate a force across this country in order to try to give instruction in and enforce the regulations. As I say, we work with the R.C.M.P. and with the provincial police. They are extremely co-operative. We give them all the advice and help that we can give them. We do the same thing for the boat manufacturers who are extremely co-operative. We work closely with boat users and anybody who is interested. However, we have not employees all across the country engaged in enforcing the small boat regulations.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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CCF

Douglas Mason Fisher

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Fisher:

Can the minister give an estimate of the number of people involved in this work and what the fixed cost would be for a year?

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

Outside of the publication of the pamphlet I am advised that the fixed costs would be somewhere between $30,000 and $40,000; but a lot of work that is carried on in this regard is done by a great many people on a voluntary basis, as in so many other volunteer organizations across the country who are interested in safety work and so on.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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CCF

Douglas Mason Fisher

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Fisher:

I should like to ask a few more questions on this matter. As to this attempt at voluntary licensing that has been established, may I ask where the records are kept? I am referring to voluntary licensing. I understand there has been voluntary licensing of small craft. I should like to know where the records are kept and who is going to be responsible for these records as they increase and to keep them up to date.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

The registration is compulsory for boats only. The registration is kept by the Department of National Revenue because the customs officers do the registering of these boats.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

Andrew Ernest Robinson

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Robinson:

I was wondering whether the minister could tell us if there has been any consultation with the United States in connection with life-saving on the great lakes. I recollect that two or three years ago a resolution concerning a coastguard service on the great lakes was debated. I also understand that it is a live subject in the minds of many people who have been close to catastrophe over the last two or three years. I am wondering whether there is any coordinated arrangement between the provinces and the federal government with regard to, for example, air search. Are local fishermen alerted to be on hand if something like this happens? What I have in mind is this. Last summer a boat was out on Georgian bay for between 30 hours and 40 hours and it was not found. By good luck the wind turned and blew it in to shore. I am just wondering whether any work is being done in the department or whether any move is being made in the department to co-ordinate something along the life-saving line.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

We studied this matter very intensely and we came to the conclusion that what are needed mainly are co-ordinators who will first of all direct the boats in any particular area that could be used for going to the rescue of a ship or boat in distress. We have appointed a co-ordinator for the east coast and for the west coast. I am advised that the board is sitting today to choose a

co-ordinator for the great lakes. His job will be to assist and to work with the shipping or boating interests in the great lakes so that a method can be worked out whereby, when a disaster occurs, the available craft in that area would go to the assistance of the ship or boat in distress.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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CCF

William Arnold Peters (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Peters:

I know that everybody connected with the small boat industry has been greatly interested in the matter of life jackets and safety equipment that has been worn for a number of years or has been obtained in the last year or so but is of no value and/ or sometimes even dangerous. I understood that the department was doing some work on examining all types of life-saving equipment or life-preserving equipment and that it was expected that before too long there would be range of equipment put out as to which the department themselves would assume responsibility as having approved it. I am wondering whether that work has been finalized.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

Yes; that has been done. The department approves certain types of lifesaving equipment. The Department of Transport's stamp is put on such equipment so that it can readily be seen by police who might inspect life-saving equipment in a craft. The law requires that life-saving equipment in a craft have the stamp of the Department of Transport on it or it is not considered satisfactory and cannot be passed as satisfactory equipment for life-saving.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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CCF

William Arnold Peters (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Peters:

Might I ask if the manufacturer puts this on after approval has been given or do inspectors go round authorizing its use? If so, is it done with numbers so that one manufacturer uses one number so you can check back and see when equipment coming on the market does not meet the specifications and see who is responsible for its manufacture?

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

Our steamship inspection staff do the actual stamping and approving of the equipment after it has been actually tested.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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CCF

William Arnold Peters (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Peters:

I am not sure whether this matter comes under the marine section but I am sure the minister will have no objections if I raise it. We have a number of problems connected with the upkeep of navigation on lake Timiskaming for boating purposes. One of the major problems in relation to the small boats is the number of logs and other material floating around. Provincially, in some lakes like lake Timagami, they have reached an agreement of some description where the sweeping has to be done before June 13. After that the party leaving logs in the water in that area is responsible for any

Supply-Transport

damage done. Previous to June 15 the companies are assumed to have jurisdiction over the waterway and if you drive a boat in the lake that is your responsibility. But after June 15 I think the companies are responsible, and if you sink your boat or get a hole in it, as I say they are responsible.

In lake Timiskaming we have a different problem which has been with us for 75 years I suppose, because the Upper Ottawa Improvement Company which was set up under federal charter many years ago assumed the responsibility for all the driving and handling of logs on the tributaries of the Ottawa and on lake Timiskaming. They have had many problems which are really not of their own making. The effect of the floods was bad this year and has created a problem not quite in keeping with a normal year. They are a small company now but there are still a great number of logs coming into lake Timiskaming continually throughout the year. I understand from talking to people in the Ottawa section that over the whole length of the Ottawa river there is the same problem.

When we have objected to the Department of Transport and asked that these lakes be cleaned up, they say they are not responsible for this. When you talk to the Upper Ottawa Improvement Company they say that they are doing it as fast as they can but that they have limited resources. As far as I know they have accepted no responsibility to a third party.

In lake Timiskaming, particularly in the Haileybury and New Liskeard areas, although they are on a bay of the lake, there are hundreds of small craft. At the present time the lake is literally dotted with deadheads and stuff as high as a quarter of a mile up the shore because of the flood this year. This has all drifted out into the lake and is a terrific hazard to navigation. In fact it makes it almost impassable.

I think something can be done about this. The department itself could take some action with regard to this stuff coming in. As far as Wabi bay is concerned, which is the main boating section at New Liskeard and Haileybury, I think that while it is an expensive proposition control booms across the bay would be a lot less expensive than the damage caused at the moment. This is something that I think could be enforced and I think the department should exercise more control over this problem than they do at present. It is a real hazard and the problem will become so bad that as far as I can see thousands of pulp logs and pieces of saw timber will be cruising around on the lake all summer. The company now sweeping it

Supply-Transport

has only several small steamers and a limited number of people to work on them.

I think regulations should be enforced prohibiting a company from allowing these logs to go out. In normal circumstances a company will double move and put in a control boom half a mile down the river. It may have three or four controls on it. But none of these companies exercise that type of control and have no objection at all if the logs go down to the lake.

I sympathize with the Upper Ottawa Improvement Company this year because flood conditions have been unusual and have created a problem which is not normal; but in normal years it is very seldom that these logs are cleaned up until late September when the boating season is over.

I would like to know if the minister has any suggestion to make to help solve the problem. It may be that as far as the department is concerned their interest is in giving lakes like lake Timiskaming and those on the Ottawa river back to the provincial government, although if they are interprovincial difficulty arises as to the border line between two provinces. In Ontario where the provincial government looks after the lakes they are much better looked after than where the federal government is in authority, because in my experience it continually keeps passing the buck to other people involved.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

The situation which the hon. member has just described is a very real and worrying one. Unfortunately logging comes under provincial jurisdiction. As there is quite naturally a conflict of jurisdiction in this matter it complicates the enforcement of regulations prohibiting the kind of behaviour which the hon. member has suggested. What we try to do is to work with the logging companies and to point out to them the dangers which their logs are causing and I think we have been reasonably successful in most cases. We have found, however, that really the most effective deterrent to allowing their logs to get out of control and become troublesome to small boats is the pressure which can be brought to bear by the local residents on the logging company itself.

However, it is a real problem and one about which we try to do everything we can to bring about satisfactory results. As I say the main difficulty is that the jurisdiction is a divided one and it complicates the question to a great extent.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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CCF

William Arnold Peters (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Peters:

In this case it is not a divided jurisdiction because the Upper Ottawa Improvement Company is a federal company which was set up with full jurisdiction over the upper Ottawa river, lake Timiskaming,

the Ottawa river and so on. No company, as I understand from reading the act which set up the Upper Ottawa Improvement Company, has any right to drive logs on lake Timiskaming, up on the Ottawa river or in any area around there. They have to pay the Upper Ottawa Improvement Company so much money for using their lakes.

As far as the provincial question is concerned, the logs which bother us in lake Timiskaming on the Ontario side do not come from Ontario at all; they are Quebec logs which come down the riviere des Quinze and other rivers in that area. But no logs are driven on the Ottawa river; for years no logs have been driven down there.

This is the situation which I think the government could do something about, because they are under charter through the federal government here. It is a very simple act. The act, which was written back in Queen Victoria's time, said that if they do not operate in the interests of the community and the people, the act will be forfeited. Certainly over the years they have not acted too much in the interests of the people. The minister says what is needed is some reaction from the communities concerned. I can assure him that this reaction comes to me, unfortunately, first of all. Then if I do not get anything done about it they go to the minister and others. But I usually hear about it as early as anybody.

The people sympathize with them in the problem they have in a year like this, but it was just as bad last year and the year before. It was even as bad when there was very little water in the lake. I should like to know what can be done to solve it on a permanent basis. It has been suggested that the communities in my area should get together, that a dozen men in motorboats should sweep the logs on their own and charge the companies for booming. If something does not happen, somebody is going to burn these logs which are piled up all along the shore. I happen to have a property there and one of my neighbours has 30 cords of wood piled up ready to burn. I do not think that is the right way of handling the problem.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

I shall be glad to look into the situation to which the hon. member has drawn my attention.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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CCF

Douglas Mason Fisher

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Fisher:

I wanted to turn to something which has to do with pilotage and I now have the papers involved. The minister will remember that earlier this session I asked a question in relation to the shipping federation of Canada. The question was No. 73 and it read:

Has the department ever given the shipping federation any authority or aproval for it to present

the views of the government of Canada on pilotage to any United States congressional committee?

I should like to read from a committee report. It is the report of a hearing before the subcommittee on coastguard, coast and geodetic survey and navigation of the committee on merchant marine and fisheries of the house of representatives, eighty sixth congress, first session, on Bill H.R. 57 to require pilots on certain vessels navigating United States waters of the great lakes, and for other purposes. During the cross-examination of Mr. Brisset, who was a spokesman for the shipping federation of Canada, Mr. Dorn, a member of the committee said:

Does the speaker speak for the Canadian government?

To which the reply was:

I think I will say "Yes".

The report continues:

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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Mr. Dorn@

In other words, the Canadian government is threatening the United States to close off those waters unless the United States refuses to pass this bill? I cannot believe that, sir.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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Maurice Brasset

Mr. Brisset:

Perhaps I have gone too far.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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Mr. Dorn@

I think perhaps you have, sir.

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Subtopic:   MARINE SERVICES
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June 3, 1960