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Training & education

Courses and programs

Fish Safe Stability Education

This four-day course, developed and facilitated by fishermen, will assist participants in building their working knowledge of vessel stability, removing threats to stability from their operations and developing procedures. Concepts are practically applied, and the course is useful for fishermen associated from all vessel sizes and using all gear types.

Safe on the Wheel

Developed by Fish Safe, this five-day course provides crews with the tools to be "Safe on the Wheel." There are no sea time requirements and this course is open to all fishermen. Navigation, chartwork, electronics, buoyage, weather and "what ifs?" are covered to make for a safer turn at the wheel. Also included is a one-day practical aboard a fishing vessel. Upon successful course completion, a Small Vessel Operators Proficiency (SVOP) certificate will be issued by Transport Canada to all participants with a CDN Number.

Safest Catch — One on One Vessel Visits

This program helps fishermen develop their on-board safety management systems. Fishermen-trained advisors provide tools and direction in the form of a workshop that takes place on the vessel. A review of emergency drills, safety equipment orientation, regulatory requirements, and how to develop a safety procedures manual are included. A MED A3 certificate will be issued by Transport Canada to all Safest Catch Program participants that provide a CDN number. A Safest Catch decal and certificate will be issued once the program is completed.

WorkSafeBC presentations

Prevention officers are available to conduct presentations on various issues in the fishing industry such as:

  • Vessel stability models (more information on this topic is available below)
  • Conducting emergency drills
  • The effects of cold-water immersion

Other presentations can be developed as needed. For more information, contact your local WorkSafeBC office. Ask to speak with an officer who works with the fishing industry.



Commercial divers must be trained and certified by a person or agency acceptable to WorkSafeBC.

Electrofishing operator

Electrofishing uses an electric current to attract, immobilize, and catch juvenile and adult fish. It is commonly used in habitats that are difficult to access using other trapping methods. All electrofishing operators must be trained and certified in a course acceptable to WorkSafeBC.

Marine craft operator

Any time a marine craft is used to transport workers, the operator must have a marine craft operator's certificate. Certificates are issued by Transport Canada under the Canada Shipping Act (federal legislation) and are not under WorkSafeBC jurisdiction.