New regulations increase boating distance from killer whales

As of June 1, boats must stay 400 metres away from the southern resident orcas

  • May. 17, 2019 11:30 a.m.

With boating season upon us, Peter Hamilton of Lifeforce Ocean Friends reminds boaters to keep a safe distance from orca pods. As of June 1, the boat distances to the southern resident killer whales (SRKWs) in Canada will increase to 400 metres.

ALSO: Orca pod identified

In addition to the minimum distance approach of 200 metres in all B.C. waters for all killer whale populations, such as the northern resident killer whales (NRKW), transients and offshores, the new 400-metre approach distance will be apply to all killer whales in the SRKW critical habitat areas.

“No Go Zones” for all vessels are at Pender Island, Saturna Island and Swiftsure Banks. Whale-watching companies can apply to the Ministry of Transport to be authorized to approach up to 200 metres to watch transient orcas, since they can determine that they are not SRKWs.

Speeds must be reduced to less than seven knots when within 1,000 metres. Vessel operators should turn off their echo sounders and turn engines to neutral idle if a whale is within 400 m. Extra care should be taken when babies are present.

WATCH: Orca plays with a sailboat in Comox harbour

For more information on the restrictions, visit the Government of Canada website.

Just Posted

B.C. Transit saves $300,000, scores 28 used fareboxes idle in California

‘Someone joked maybe we can buy used fareboxes on eBay,’ CEO says

PHOTOS: City of Colwood hosts a ‘heartwarming start’ to the holidays

Colwood Christmas Light Up Celebration sees surge in attendance

Tenants above Wellburns uncertain after ‘nightmare’ sewage flood ousts them indefinitely

Tenants evacuated after sewage flooded basement of century-old building

Victoria cycling community raises concern over new bike lane designs

High traffic along a corridor needs to be considered, Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition says

Hundreds of students gather at Government House to decorate Christmas Trees

The annual tradition let Grade 2 and 3 students help celebrate for the holidays

VIDEO: John Lennon’s iconic Rolls Royce rolls into Camosun College for checkup

Royal BC Museum, Camosun College and Coachwerks Restorations come together to care for car

POLL: Will you be donating to charities over the holiday season?

Many here in Victoria joined others around the world to take part… Continue reading

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Dec. 3

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

VIDEO: Rockslide closes part of Highway 93 in Fairmont Hot Springs

Geotechnical team called in to do an assessment after rocks fell from hoodoos

Petition calls for appeal of ex-Burns Lake mayor’s sentence for sex assault

Prosecution service says Luke Strimbold’s case is under review

Northwest B.C. wildlife shelter rescues particularly tiny bear cub

Shelter co-founder says the cub weighs less than a third of what it should at this time of year

BC firefighters to help battle Australian bushfires

Canada sent 22 people, including 7 from B.C.

B.C. NDP touts the end of MSP premiums

Horgan, James held news conference to reiterate that people will get their last bill this month

Oscar Hickes: Longest running hockey tournament on Vancouver Island cancelled

Patrick Murray, one of the organizers for the tournament, broke the sad news on social media.

Most Read