Ottawa, ON – “Our thoughts are with the family of the cargo ship crew member who died from a heart attack yesterday afternoon,” said Christine Collins, National President of the Union of Canadian Transportation Employees upon learning of the incident that unfolded in the shadows of the now closed Kitsilano Coast Guard station.

“Police, ambulance, the hovercraft station in Richmond, all emergency responders reacted as quickly as possible and should be congratulated for that.  I can’t help but wonder though if things would have been different if the Kits station were still open,” said Collins.

The abandoned Kitsilano Coast Guard station was closed in February 2013 for budgetary reasons despite tremendous public outcry.

“With the other incidents that have occurred in and around the closed Kits station, the people of BC deserve an unbiased thorough search and rescue needs analysis to be completed before another life is loss,” said Dave Clark, UCTE Pacific Regional Vice-President.