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Aids to Navigation

Illustration - Aids to Navigation

Did you know that the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans is mandated, though not obligated, to provide aids to navigation? It is up to the Aids to Navigation program to provide fixed, floating and electronic aids in order to ensure the safety of mariners, and to promote and facilitate the expeditious movement of maritime traffic. Aids to navigation are established in duly charted Canadian waters when justified by the volume of traffic and rate of threats.

The provision of information on the conditions of aids to navigation is assured through Notices to Shipping and Notices to Mariners.

For a secure navigation

For people less familiar with the services provided by the Canadian Coast Guard, aids to navigation are devices or systems, external to a vessel, that are provided to assist mariners determine their position and course, to warn them of dangers or obstructions, or to advise them of the location of the best or preferred route.

For proper understanding and interpretation of their function, aids to navigation are to be used in conjunction with available marine publications, including nautical charts, the List of Lights, Buoys and Fog Signals , the Radio Aids to Marine Navigation handbook and Sailing Directions.

We wish to emphasize that mariners are requested to immediately report any failure of a marine aid to navigation to the nearest Coast Guard Office or to a Coast Guard Marine Communications and Traffic Services centre.

For any question or additional information on Aids to navigation, consult The Canadian Aids to Navigation System or visit the Canadian Coast Guard 's national website.