Coast Guard Gets New State-Of-The Art Ship

The CCGS John Cabot will be based in St. John’s. Picture: Canadian Coast Guard

Victoria: The Canadian Coast Guard this week officially took delivery of CCGS John Cabot, it’s third state-of-the-art Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel (OFSV) from Seaspan Shipyard.

This was the third vessel delivered in the last 15 months and completes the first full class of large vessels under the National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSS).

CCGS John Cabot will now join her sister ships already in service, CCGS Capt Jacques Cartier, stationed in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, and CCGS Sir John Franklin, based in Victoria, British Columbia.

The ultimate milestone in the shipbuilding process, the delivery of this third OFSV caps a string of achievements with this vessel. The Seaspan Shipyards team logged dozens of first-ever accomplishments as they developed innovative approaches to successfully launch and complete the ship during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Measuring 63.4 meters, the vessel will be one of the most advanced and capable ships of its size and type in the world.

The vessel was launched on July 3 by B.C Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry at 97% complete, a rare accomplishment that exceeded international benchmarks. Sea trials began six weeks later, a time span between launch and sea trials that are considered best-in-class in the shipbuilding industry.

Traditionally a large public celebration, official handover of CCGS John Cabot took place at Seaspan’s Victoria shipyard in compliance with strict COVID-19 protocols and attended by a small official party of Coast Guard and Seaspan Shipyards officials.

Following a transition period for her new Coast Guard commanding Officer and crew, the CCGS John Cabot will set sail to her homeport in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, where she will support scientific research, search and rescue operations, and environmental response.

Over 1,200 employees worked on the OFSV class. More than a dozen major partners and more than 450 suppliers and their thousands of employees across the country contributed to these world-class OFSV vessels, and continue to play a key role in shaping a thriving domestic marine industry in Canada.

With more than $1.5 billion contributed to date to Canada’s GDP, Seaspan Shipyards is rebuilding a marine industrial sector on Canada’s West Coast and generating economic impact across Canada through job creation and contracts with hundreds of small and medium-sized businesses.

Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard said: “Today the Government of Canada marks a significant milestone in its commitment to reinvest in the Canadian Coast Guard fleet. With the delivery of the CCGS John Cabot, we are ensuring that Fisheries and Oceans scientists and the Coast Guard have a modern platform including the equipment and technology they need to conduct vital scientific research, as well as support Coast Guard programs and services.”

Anita Anand, Minister of Public Services and Procurement, said: “Thanks to the dedicated team at Seaspan Shipyards, we are celebrating the delivery of the future CCGS John Cabot, the third and final Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel (OFSV). This is an important milestone in the renewal of the Canadian Coast Guard fleet and represents the first large vessel construction project completed under the National Shipbuilding Strategy.”