The Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons


–   Special Recognition Award   –


Doing it Right for 75 Years


It certainly can’t be said that Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons (CPS) are new to the business of teaching safe boating. In fact, they’ve been doing it for 75 years.


CPS’s mandate is to increase awareness and knowledge of safe boating by educating and training members and the general public, by fostering fellowship among members, and by establishing partnerships and alliances with organizations and agencies interested in boating.  To this end, many local law enforcement agencies and municipal authorities consult CPS-ECP on matters of training and navigational hazards. Training has been provided by thousands of CPS-ECP’s volunteers across Canada to such organizations as the Boy Scouts, Sea Cadets, and law enforcement agencies, to name but a few. Whenever requested, members are available to teach, lecture, or advise on boating safety.


Since 1938, CPS-ECP has taught 850,000 plus boaters from coast to coast. To celebrate this milestone, CPS-ECP organized a Flag Relay. Two CPS-ECP Flags made their way from Windsor, Ontario to travel east and west across Canada making stops at each Squadron from coast to coast. To symbolize how CPS-ECP has touched every major waterway in the country, dipping ceremonies occurred in many locations across Canada during the summer and fall of 2013. Here is a video montage of the journey, media coverage and city proclamations:


For 75 years CPS-ECP volunteers have continually taught and developed French and English boating safety courses that keep up with boater needs. CPS-ECP teaches everything from the Pleasure Craft Operator Card, Charting, Weather, Electronic Navigation, Boat Maintenance, VHF Radio to Celestial Navigation. CPS-ECP has continued to raise the bar for Canadian boating safety education. CPS-ECP has been teaching boating safety courses before they were mandatory and in 1995 even released an interactive computer-based training program for their BoatPro Course. Topics included Safety and Awareness, Rules of the Road, Aids to Navigation and Docking with end of chapter quizzes. Once students passed the final test they received a wallet-size BoatPro card. In 2012 CPS-ECP started teaching the Pleasure Craft Operator Card course in Chinese. CBC’s The National featured this milestone during the Toronto Flag Relay Stop.


CPS-ECP continues to work the Canadian Marine Advisory Council and the National Education Standards Panel for NASBLA to advise on recreational boating safety education.

Over the years CPS-ECP volunteers have also donated their time to teach safe boating through outreach programs such as flare and lifejacket demonstrations, Pleasure Craft Courtesy Checks, Safe Boating Week activities, Ready Set-Wear-It, trade shows, safety talks and shoreline clean-up events.


CPS-ECP volunteers are passionate about boating safety and it shows!  For this reason the volunteers of CPS-ECP deserve Special Recognition.



CPS Chief Commander Joseph Gatfield accepts the Special Recognition Award from the CSBC’s Ted Rankine marking CPS’s 75 years of dedicated service to boating education and promoting safety on the water. Left to rightJohn Ashworth (past District Commander), Dave Agnew (General Director) and Carolyn Reid (National Training Officer), Joseph Gatfield, Ted Rankine.




5 Key Steps to Safer Boating

5 steps lifejacket

Wear Your Lifejacket

Legally you must carry one on board, appropriately sized for each passenger. But don’t just carry it, WEAR IT.

5 steps lifejacket

Boat Sober

Boating under the influence of alcohol, recreational drugs or prescription narcotics, is illegal, irresponsible and potentially deadly. Leave any such substances until you return to the dock.

5 steps lifejacket

Take a Boating Course

The law requires that anyone operating a power-driven boat must have a Pleasure Craft Operator Card OR other accredited proof of competency and it must be carried on board.

5 steps lifejacket

Be Prepared - You and Your Vessel

Ensure your boat has all the required safety gear and sufficient fuel. Be sure the weather is suitable for your vessel’s capabilities.

5 steps lifejacket

Be Cold Water Safe

Cold water is a significant risk. Learn how to protect yourself.