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Marine transportation

Canada has the longest coastline of any country in the world, and shares the largest freshwater lake system on earth. Canadian marine transportation in the Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic oceans and the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence River system carries more than $200 billion of Canada's international trade.

The TSB's marine investigators are certified as masters or chief engineers of commercial vessels, masters of fishing vessels, or are naval architects, and have extensive experience in the marine industry. As well as conducting investigations, they participate in national and international government and industry groups to monitor safety trends and communicate safety issues to change agents.

Marine transportation occurrences in 2019

In 2019, 267 marine accidents were reported to the TSB, a decrease from the 2018 total of 289 and below the 10-year (2009–2018) average of 298. The number of “shipping accidents” decreased to 207 from the last year’s 232. However, with 60 accidents reported, 2019 saw a slight increase in “accidents aboard ship” from the 57 reported in 2018.

Seventeen marine fatalities were reported, which is down from the 22 fatalities reported in 2018, but still above the annual average of 15.2 in the 2009–2018 time period. Twelve of the 17 marine fatalities in 2019 were fishing-related; and the data indicates that more needs to be done to improve safety in the commercial fishing industry, which has been on the TSB’s Watchlist since its inception in 2010.

In 2019, 947 marine incidents were reported to the TSB, comparable to the total of 931 in 2018, and above the annual 10-year (2009–2018) average of 573. Most (84%) reportable incidents were related to total failure of machinery or technical system.

2019 annual statistical summary on transportation occurrences in the marine sector