Canadian Safe Boating Council Presents Canadian Safe Boating Awards for Outstanding Efforts

Casba 2015 Group


Across Canada, five individuals, four organizations stand out for their efforts in 2014 in support of recreational boating safety and environmental stewardship. And now the Canadian Safe Boating Council has recognized them with awards for their heroism, dedication and outstanding accomplishments.

The Canadian Safe Boating Awards (CASBAs) are like the Golden Globe awards of safe boating. On January 11th the Canadian Safe Boating Council hosted the annual CASBA gala to recognize the efforts of the general public, volunteers, professionals, companies, agencies and organizations that have distinguished themselves in the fields of boating safety and environmental stewardship during the 2014 boating season. The winners were selected from a host of nominations received from the public at large, covering boating safety stories from British Columbia to Quebec.

The CASBA awards span a number of categories and the winners who displayed their dedication and heroism in 2014 are as follows:

Safe Guarding the Environment:  Eco Alkaline Batteries.
Boaters require batteries for a variety of on board applications. Eco Alkalines™ is the world’s first battery range to achieve Carbonfree® product certification, demonstrating a wide commitment to environmental responsibility. The Eco Alkalines ™ are affordable without sacrificing quality or the needs of the boating costumer. 

Marine Professional of the Year: Thomas (Ernie) Parolin,
Ernie is the manager of the Canadian Forces Floatation and Life Support Equipment Programme., whose contribution can best be summarized by an associate from Transport Canada, “Ernie Parolin has done far more for water safety than people appreciate and I suspect, far more than he realizes. He has brought the experience, safety concerns and support of the Department of National Defence to the Canadian boating community at large. “ 

Casba 2015 Gullick

 Special Recognition Award (posthumously):  Raymond John (Jack) Kruger:
Jack Kruger has spent his life committed to the safety and wellbeing of those who live and visit Canada’s far north, specifically through-out Northern Alberta, Northwest Territories and Nunavut.  During his tenure, Jack increased Coast Guard Auxiliary presence by 700 %, managed over 700 SAR incidents and trained more than 100 Auxiliary and 500 RCMP officers in SAR and boat operation.

Marine Industry Award: Boating Skills Virtual Trainer: The United States Power Squadron (USPS), and Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons (CPS-ECP).
The USPS in conjunction with US Coast Guard created a boating simulator to teach boaters docking, working lines, open water operation and more and provide the opportunity to practice those skills before getting out on the water.  CPS-ECP took the base virtual trainer, modified it for Canadian to be multi lingual (French and Chinese) and are now putting it into training across Canada.

Ontario Power Generation Best Boating Safety Initiative: Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons CPS-ECP Emergency Equipment Education and Pyrotechnic Disposal Program.
An ongoing challenge is what to do with expired pyrotechnics (flares). CPS-ECP developed a disposal program and leveraged that activity into safe handling courses. The program was rolled out during the summer of 2014 across Canada, almost 10 thousand flares were collected (some dating back to 1965) and numerous boaters trained. The program is expected to continue in future years.

Volunteer of the Year:  Dan Wright Coxswain RCMSAR
Dan is typical one of those thousands of volunteers who work tirelessly to promote boating safety and keep Canada’s waterways safe.  As a member of RCMSAR for 8 years Dan qualified to operate RCMSAR rescue vessels, has participated in numerous training sessions, countless scheduled patrols and is on call weekends, days and evenings throughout the year in the event that a someone needs help on the water. Dan represents the spirit of RCMSAR, an all-volunteer organization on the west coast with 1000 volunteer members participating in more than 800 calls every year.

Special Recognition Award for Media Outreach: Brent and Sarah Morrison, CPS Burnaby Squadron
Brent and Sarah are being recognized for leveraging local television program, Breakfast Television in July 2014 to do a spot on boating safety. They solicited the interest of City to create the feature for Breakfast Television, then developed the content, recruited spokespeople from their squadron and secured the vessels needed for on camera presence.  The result was more than 8 minutes of compelling boating safety information delivered to thousands of Canadians.  

Media Contribution to Boating Safety
City has consistently assisted the CSBC and many other agencies to deliver boating safety messaging to their audience, Canadians all across Canada. They include their support both in scheduled programming (e.g. Breakfast TV), in their news programming, where they include boating safety segments and tips and coverage of safe boating week launches across the country. 

Stearns Rescue of the Year: Gavin England
Gavin England, is a 13 year old boy who was prawning in BC with his 77 year old grandfather. Their boat sank and Gavin, refusing to let his diabetic grandfather give up, started pulling him to shore. After reaching shore, Gavin walked over an hour on gravel trails, finding a stick shift truck, (never having driven before) drove to get help to save his grandfather. 

The safety and enjoyment of some 15 million Canadians on our waterways every year is due in large part to individuals and organizations like these. Recognizing them is important, and telling their stories will inspire others. 

The Canadian Safe Boating Council (CSBC) is a registered charity, and its members and partners from all areas of the marine community include boat and marine product manufacturers, boating education organizations, water safety and marine law enforcement sectors. The Council’s goal is to work to ensure that the millions of Canadians who head out on the waters in canoes and kayaks, sailboards and sailboats, fishing boats, personal watercraft, power boats and cruisers are equipped with the knowledge they need for a safe day on the water. 

Visit for more information about the CASBAs and the Canadian Safe Boating Council. 


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