Canada's Transport Minister launches safe boating awareness week

    OTTAWA, May 15 /CNW Telbec/ - John Baird, Canada's Transport Minister,
officially launched Safe Boating Awareness Week 2009 with an announcement of
$280,000 for six projects under the Boating Safety Class Contribution Program.
    "Today is not only the beginning of Safe Boating Awareness Week, but also
the start of the Victoria Day long weekend," said Minister Baird. "On behalf
of the Government of Canada, I would like to remind all Canadians who are
planning on boating this holiday that simple measures, including wearing
lifejackets prevent needless tragedies."
    Recipients of the 2009 Boating Safety Class Contribution Program include:

    - Royal Life Saving Society          - Ontario Marine Operators
      of Canada                            Association
    - Canadian Safe Boating Council      - Kayak Newfoundland and Labrador
    - Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons  - Conseil québécois du nautisme

    Minister Baird also reminded Canadians of the following tips to stay safe
    on the water:

    - Always wear a lifejacket and make sure your vessel is equipped with
      enough Canadian-approved lifejackets for each of your guests.
    - Have proof of competency on board at all times.
    - Do not drink and boat.
    - Take a boating safety course.
    - Carry the required safety equipment for your vessel such as paddles,
      bailer, flashlight, buoyant line, anchor etc.
    - Keep clear of swimmers, divers and other vessels.
    - Navigate your boat on the correct side of the buoy.
    - Wear proper clothing and check the weather forecast before setting out.

    Whether you're a boater, diver, angler, hunter or water sports
enthusiast, there are rules and information Canadians should know before
heading out on the water. For the latest information on how to stay safe on
Canadian waters, visit
    Safe Boating Awareness Week runs from May 16-22. For more information,
please visit the Canadian Safe Boating Council's website at

For further information:

For further information: Chris Day, Press Secretary, Office of Transport
Minister John Baird, Ottawa, (613) 991-0700; Media Relations, Transport
Canada, Ottawa, (613) 993-0055; Transport Canada is online at
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