Canadian Coast Guard - Victoria, BC, Canada

In the summer of 2001, I worked with the Pacific Region Canadian Coast Guard’s (CCG) engineering group. The CCG is responsible for marine safety: Safe harbours, waters and waterways, reliable navigational charts, marine aids and marine communication. The CCG provides icebreaking, aids to navigation, search and rescue, as well as environmental response services. Much of my time with the CCG was spent surveying light-stations, making updates to engineering drawings, and helping with management of several on-going projects.

In the area of navigation aids, the CCG maintains approximately 5000 navigational aids, ranging from small inland waterway dolphins to very large offshore ice-buoys. The life-span of these aids varies greatly depending on marker type and location, but one thing remains the same; the job of retrieving the buoys is one of the most dangerous jobs that the CCG does. Due to this fact, a significant portion of my time with the CCG was spent determining the wear characteristics on mooring chains in order to better understand their wear patterns - leading to a better prediction of their service-lives.