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Old 17-01-2010, 03:30   #31
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I think the PCOC is somewhat of a scam, or at the least a bit of a money grab. Aside from having taken the Canadian Power Squadron course as well as a radio licence, the government does not recognize it and I have to take their test (and pay minimum $35). I would guess that at least 50% of the boaters here in canada are on small lakes, with no navigation aides of any sort, and also the test asks a lot of stupid questions like whose jurisdiction is such and such a law, Coast Guard, Dept. of Transport, Shipping Act, etc.. I would like to know how knowing who's law I am breaking is going to make me safer.
I agree that something is needed, and I guess something is better than nothing, but not recognizing the credits obtained with the Canadian Power Squadron, or some other institution smells like a money grab to me.
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Old 17-01-2010, 04:51   #32
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I haven't had 'nuff coffee yet this morning to give a full dissertation on the PCOC program but I'll try to dispel a few myths.

I work for the Coast Guard and was a first hand witness to the whole program and how it came about. It was back in the early-mid 80's that there was a number of highly visible incidents involving minors and high powered sport boats which resulted in the loss of life. A number of Provincial and Federal politicians lambasted the Gov't (Transport Canada and Coast Guard) for their lack of a "licensing" system for pleasure craft operators. This lead to CG setting up a program called "Office of Boating Safety". OBS entered into discussions with their Industry partners through a Gov't/Industry consultative body (Canadian Marine Advisory Councils). During these discussions Industry lobbied hard for "minimal" Gov't participation in the process and that the program "NOT" be a license to operate a boat.

Through tremendous Industry pressure Gov't gave in to Industry and allowed Industry to establish the guidelines for the PCOC program. OBS would set standards, certify course providers etc. Industry would deliver the courses and certify the participants and receive the fees for such. Absolutely "NO" money goes to Gov't.

As a lot of us have seen the program isn't without it's faults but as has been said "It's better than nothing". The primary purpose was to expose new boaters to "some" operator safety training. A 10 year grandfather clause was put in place to ease everyone into the program culminating with the Sept. 2009 deadline for everyone to have the card.

Quote:
I would like to know how knowing who's law I am breaking is going to make me safer.
Canada Shipping Act... Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations (SOR/99-53)

I've taken the CPS course and Aced the test (only one at the time to have done that). I'm also an instructor and administer the tests and certify operators. Do I believe the program is living up to its expectations? No. Do I think it helps? Yes. I've delivered the course to 500 cub scouts, boy scouts, girl scouts, Venturers etc. The course provider I've done this for allows these kids to get their operator cards for $10. I received no renumeration for my efforts.

Anyone who's had even minimal exposure to operating a boat, can read the "Safe Boating Guide", has an IQ slightly higher than their shoe size can pass the test and get the card. Will doing so benefit the experienced operator? Not likely but then again they might learn something they didn't know before, I did and I have almost 30 yrs in the Coast Guard.

For the record I'm not providing this information as a representative of either Transport Canada or the Coast Guard. I'm just an involved boater like the rest of you. It is simply the background as I remember it and my personal opinion(s).

I guess to sum it up we "more experienced" operators although we don't fully believe in the program can at least set a good (or better) example for those less experienced than ourselves.
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Old 17-01-2010, 05:20   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knottybuoyz View Post
I haven't had 'nuff coffee yet this morning to give a full dissertation on the PCOC program but I'll try to dispel a few myths.

I work for the Coast Guard and was a first hand witness to the whole program and how it came about. It was back in the early-mid 80's that there was a number of highly visible incidents involving minors and high powered sport boats which resulted in the loss of life. A number of Provincial and Federal politicians lambasted the Gov't (Transport Canada and Coast Guard) for their lack of a "licensing" system for pleasure craft operators. This lead to CG setting up a program called "Office of Boating Safety". OBS entered into discussions with their Industry partners through a Gov't/Industry consultative body (Canadian Marine Advisory Councils). During these discussions Industry lobbied hard for "minimal" Gov't participation in the process and that the program "NOT" be a license to operate a boat.

Through tremendous Industry pressure Gov't gave in to Industry and allowed Industry to establish the guidelines for the PCOC program. OBS would set standards, certify course providers etc. Industry would deliver the courses and certify the participants and receive the fees for such. Absolutely "NO" money goes to Gov't.

As a lot of us have seen the program isn't without it's faults but as has been said "It's better than nothing". The primary purpose was to expose new boaters to "some" operator safety training. A 10 year grandfather clause was put in place to ease everyone into the program culminating with the Sept. 2009 deadline for everyone to have the card.

Canada Shipping Act... Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations (SOR/99-53)

I've taken the CPS course and Aced the test (only one at the time to have done that). I'm also an instructor and administer the tests and certify operators. Do I believe the program is living up to its expectations? No. Do I think it helps? Yes. I've delivered the course to 500 cub scouts, boy scouts, girl scouts, Venturers etc. The course provider I've done this for allows these kids to get their operator cards for $10. I received no renumeration for my efforts.

Anyone who's had even minimal exposure to operating a boat, can read the "Safe Boating Guide", has an IQ slightly higher than their shoe size can pass the test and get the card. Will doing so benefit the experienced operator? Not likely but then again they might learn something they didn't know before, I did and I have almost 30 yrs in the Coast Guard.

For the record I'm not providing this information as a representative of either Transport Canada or the Coast Guard. I'm just an involved boater like the rest of you. It is simply the background as I remember it and my personal opinion(s).

I guess to sum it up we "more experienced" operators although we don't fully believe in the program can at least set a good (or better) example for those less experienced than ourselves.
Good post. Thanks.
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Old 17-01-2010, 05:24   #34
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Originally Posted by knottybuoyz View Post
... Industry would deliver the courses and certify the participants and receive the fees for such. Absolutely "NO" money goes to Gov't...
A Government mandated program, wherein NO income (but some expense) accrues to the Government cannot be a money grab. This a an obvious red-herring, which tends to water down any legitimate complaints with the program.

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Originally Posted by Exocet View Post
I think the PCOC is somewhat of a scam, or at the least a bit of a money grab...
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Old 17-01-2010, 05:47   #35
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I am not the only one whom is wondering what qualifications some of our Politicians have to run this Country. I hope they have at least an "OPERATORS CARD"

It all boils down to ------Being Responsible--------something which should be instilled early on by the Parents followed by the Teachers. The Country just cant afford and Canadians dont like to have a Policeman arround every corner.
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Old 17-01-2010, 12:33   #36
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Although I doubt (withgout affirmative contrary evidence) your contention that there's no evidence, the arguement (itself) presents a logical fallacy (argumentum ad ignorantiam, or appeal to ignorance"). In this case, we've BOTH expressed unsubstantiated opinions, worth about what they cost (the reader).

No , Maritime NZ looked at statistical data for places with licensing (including various US states) and compared with NZ and other places without. NZ was ahead of all US states and there was no correlation between licensing and boating deaths.
If I wasn't so lazy I'd go find the documents.

In other words, there is evidence and it points to there being no value in licensing boat operators.
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Old 17-01-2010, 12:44   #37
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No , Maritime NZ looked at statistical data for places with licensing (including various US states) and compared with NZ and other places without. NZ was ahead of all US states and there was no correlation between licensing and boating deaths.
If I wasn't so lazy I'd go find the documents.

In other words, there is evidence and it points to there being no value in licensing boat operators.
Don't know how they could do that as no US state requires a license to pilot a pleasurecraft.

Just went to the NZMaritime website where they do seem to require a license http://www.maritimenz.govt.nz/Commer...-a-skipper.asp
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Old 17-01-2010, 12:53   #38
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Don't know how they could do that as no US state requires a license to pilot a pleasurecraft.
You might want to check out this web site.

NASBLA - The National Association of State Boating Law Administrators
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Old 17-01-2010, 12:55   #39
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Ok, Here's the whole document and a few snippets

http://www.maritimenz.govt.nz/Public...cember1999.pdf

A high volume of regulatory control does not, however, appear to
equate to low boating fatality rates internationally,

2.8.12 Boat Identification and Registration
Considering the low direct safety benefits that boat identification and registration
contribute, the Group recommends:
that these options not be implemented on a national basis unless there is
evidence in the future justifying implementation.

Extent of regulatory control over recreational boating activity would appear to have
little relationship to the above fatality rates as Sweden, the United Kingdom and New
Zealand have low levels of regulatory control, while Canada and Australia have
extensive boat registration and operator licensing systems.

There seems to be no correlation between operator licensing/mandatory education and
fatalities in the four States which require operator licences and the 18 which requireboater education. The fatality rates for these States are evenly spread through the full
range of all state fatality rates.-- USA


It goes on but I have to go to work
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Old 17-01-2010, 12:56   #40
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Ok, I see some requirements for various safe boating courses but I don't see any requirments for "license".
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Old 17-01-2010, 12:58   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dana-tenacity View Post
Ok, Here's the whole document and a few snippets

http://www.maritimenz.govt.nz/Public...cember1999.pdf

A high volume of regulatory control does not, however, appear to
equate to low boating fatality rates internationally,

2.8.12 Boat Identification and Registration
Considering the low direct safety benefits that boat identification and registration
contribute, the Group recommends:
that these options not be implemented on a national basis unless there is
evidence in the future justifying implementation.

Extent of regulatory control over recreational boating activity would appear to have
little relationship to the above fatality rates as Sweden, the United Kingdom and New
Zealand have low levels of regulatory control, while Canada and Australia have
extensive boat registration and operator licensing systems.

There seems to be no correlation between operator licensing/mandatory education and
fatalities in the four States which require operator licences and the 18 which requireboater education. The fatality rates for these States are evenly spread through the full
range of all state fatality rates.-- USA


It goes on but I have to go to work

They made a couple of mistakes. Canada does not require a pleasurecraft operator to have a license and neither does any state in the US.
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Old 17-01-2010, 13:16   #42
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Ok, I see some requirements for various safe boating courses but I don't see any requirments for "license".
I am not sure how else you would prove that you took the course. But Maryland seems to require something in writing.

Quote:
Anyone born on or after July 1, 1972 who is operating a motorized vessel on MD waters must have a valid certificate of boating safety education
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Old 17-01-2010, 13:25   #43
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They made a couple of mistakes. Canada does not require a pleasurecraft operator to have a license and neither does any state in the US.
So what is the PCOC if not a licence?

The PCOC card program is a failure but no more so than our vehicle driver licencing system. Giving a person a licence to operate a vehicle (or vessel) for life is asinine. If we had to re-test every 5 years or so, and included meaningful skill tests such as skid control (remember, it is icy up here 6 months of the year), we would have much safer drivers. A simple practical test including boat handling skills such as "can you dock your boat, unaided by anyone on shore?" should be included. Most people would flunk that one based on what I see lately.

There's a social aspect to this as well, that being that no one gives a crap about anyone but themselves when driving a car (boats as well) and a lot of the bad behavior with modes of transportation is driven by that fact.
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Old 17-01-2010, 13:27   #44
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I am not sure how else you would prove that you took the course. But Maryland seems to require something in writing.
It's just like the Canadian "Operators Proficiency Card". Its a written test that as I previously mentioned my 10yr. old nephew passed with no experience whatsoever. It is not a license and is not referred to as such in any province or state in North America. To get this card, no proof of experience is neccessary other than the ability to pass this very simple test.
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Old 17-01-2010, 13:31   #45
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They made a couple of mistakes. Canada does not require a pleasurecraft operator to have a license and neither does any state in the US.
I am not sure what you mean by a license, but in Canada you do have to prove competency. Unless you have proof that goes back before 1999, you need a PCOC to operate a motorized vessel.
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