(OTTAWA) — Following a competitive process, the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) has announced the purchase of a commercial light icebreaker from New Brunswick-based Atlantic Towing Ltd. This vessel will ensure that the Coast Guard retains its icebreaking capacity to keep vital shipping lanes open when the existing fleet enters planned maintenance periods.
The vessel, currently designated Mangystau 2, was purchased from Atlantic Towing at a cost of $45.2 million. The vessel is currently home-ported in Turkmenistan.
This light icebreaker is the fourth interim icebreaker purchased by the Canadian Coast Guard, following the prior purchase of three medium interim icebreakers: CCGS Jean Goodwill, CCGS Vincent Massey, and CCGS Captain Molly Kool. These vessels were acquired to supplement the existing fleet during vessel life extension and repair periods.
The newly acquired 216-foot vessel is expected to arrive before the end of the year at its temporary home at the CCG’s Prescott base in Ontario. Upon its arrival, the CCG will undertake inspection and design work to prepare for the conversion of the vessel in order for it to join the Coast Guard’s icebreaking fleet. Public Services and Procurement Canada will issue a public tender for the refit work in early 2022.
Upon joining the Coast Guard fleet, this vessel will perform icebreaking duties as well as tend the Coast Guard’s navigational buoys in the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence and Atlantic regions. In addition, the vessel will be available for search and rescue duties when needed.
Canada announced plans in 2019 to build six new icebreakers under the National Shipbuilding Strategy. The refitted vessels will serve on an interim basis until the new vessels arrive.
– Canadian Coast Guard