No cruise ships in Canada until February 2022 | Polarjournal
Unfortunately, the planned Northwest Passage of Hurtigruten with the “Roald Amundsen” in August 2021 will probably not happen. (Photo: Hurtigruten)

As the Canadian government announced there will be no cruises in their waters this year. This was announced by the Minister of Transport Omar Alghabra on February 04. Canada has taken a decision that cruise ships with more than 100 passengers will not be allowed to enter the waters of Canada until Feb. 28, 2022.

Even small sailing vessels and their crews are subject to the new Canadian government regulations.

“As Canadians continue to do their part to reduce the spread of COVID-19, our government continues to work hard to keep Canada’s transportation system safe”, Alghabra said in a statement.

“Temporary bans on cruise ships and recreational boats are essential to continue protecting the most vulnerable populations and avoid overburdening our health systems. This is the right and responsible thing to do.”

Canada had already imposed a travel ban until mid-2021 in 2020. The provision applies to cruise ships that can carry more than 100 passengers. For the Arctic regions, the ban also applies to smaller ships. Ferries or water taxis for local traffic are not affected.

Somerset Island – It is going to be quiet in the Canadian Arctic. (Photo: Heiner Kubny)

High fines and imprisonment for rule violations

Violations of these regulations are subject to heavy fines. This means that smaller vessels are fined $5,000 per day for individuals and $25,000 per day for groups or companies.

Violations involving passenger vessels could be subject to a fine of up to $1 million or imprisonment for up to 18 months, or both, on summary conviction.

Public passenger vessels such as ferries and water taxis should continue to follow local health guidelines and protocols and take steps to contain the spread of COVID-19 and prevent future outbreaks, a statement from the Department of Transportation said.

Heiner Kubny, PolarJournal

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