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For decades, icebreakers have prevented the winter paralysis of maritime traffic in the waters of the St. Lawrence.
< p class="e-p">Icebreaker vessels have been an essential element for more than a century to avoid the paralysis in winter of maritime traffic in the waters of the St. Lawrence and its Gulf. See some excerpts from our archives that explain their role.
“The work of an icebreaker in the waters of the St. Lawrence, upstream of Trois-Rivières and Sorel , begins in December as soon as the ice forms and continues unabated until the end of March when the ice breaks up.
—Roger Baulu, 1961
Did you know that Canada, as we know it today, exists in part because of icebreakers?< /p>
Between 1876 and 1899, three icebreaker ferries were operated by the Canadian government between Prince Edward Island and the mainland.
The construction of these three ships met a condition for the island's accession to the Canadian Confederation in 1867.
Host Jacques Fauteux interviews engineer Guy Choquette on the history of icebreakers in the waters of the St. Lawrence.
On March 27, 1961, narrator Roger Baulu describes the work of the Iberville icebreaker in the waters of the St. Lawrence for the program Reportage.
The host of the program, Jacques Fauteux , then interviews Guy Choquette, who is an engineer at the Canadian Department of Transport.
This summarizes the history of the use of icebreakers on the St. Lawrence River.
Since 1908, icebreakers have been active every winter to prevent the formation or destroy ice jams at Cap-Rouge, near Quebec City.
The work of the icebreakers also aims to prevent flooding between Trois-Rivières and Montreal, which then occurs frequently at the end of winter and which causes significant damage and even loss of life. .
The engineer also explains that in 1953, the Iberville icebreaker was put into service and further ensures free movement in the waters of the St. Lawrence between Montreal and Quebec.
The Pierre Radisson icebreaker was commissioned in 1978 by the Canadian Coast Guard.
Its winter home port is Quebec City and it breaks up the ice that forms on the St. Lawrence.
Report by journalist François Picard describing a day on the icebreaker Pierre Radisson.
On March 9, 1983, the program Au jour le jourpresented a report by journalist François Picard.
The latter is on board the Pierre Radisson and lives a working day with his crew.
To portray what life is like on the icebreaker, François Picard interviews several members of the crew.
Captain Paul Pelland, mechanic Daniel Lavoie, chef Robert Langlois and purser Gilles Leblond describe the many operations and challenges involved in the proper functioning of the Pierre Radisson.< /p>
“Weather in Newfoundland, we are told regularly by people who sail around the world, on all oceans, that we thought we were safe when entering the Cabot Strait. But the conditions are abominable. »
—Capitaine Richard Tremblay, iceman, 2005
A few years later, in 2005, journalist Jean-Pierre Rogel embarked for Radio-Canada television in aboard another icebreaker.
His report, presented on the show Découverteon March 20, 2005, focuses on the icebreaker Des Groseilliers, which plys the waters of the St. Lawrence River and its Gulf.
The report shows us the Des Groseilliers on a mission to assist a ship trapped in the ice between Matane and Baie-Comeau.
Then journalist Jean-Pierre Rogel introduces us to Captain Richard Tremblay.
The latter is an ice advisor, that is to say an experienced officer hired by shipping companies to face the perilous environment of the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
Report by journalist Jean-Pierre Rogel on the activities of the icebreaker Des Groseilliers in the Estuary and Gulf of St. Lawrence. Photographs: Canadian Coast Guard
The Des Groseilliers icebreaker was recently placed in drydock in Lévis for upgrade work.
He has been replaced by a brand new member of the Canadian Coast Guard fleet.
The Vincent Massey will help boats transiting the Saguenay River and in the estuary to the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
The icebreaker could also be called in for reinforcement in the Great Lakes.
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