Safety, Volunteerism, Professionalism, Community Trust
We are the charity that saves lives on the water
Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue is a volunteer based organization that operates 33 marine rescue stations on the British Columbia coast and in the B.C. Interior. From Vancouver’s busy harbour to the remote waters of the North Coast, our volunteer crews are on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, ready to respond to marine emergencies. We are a key part of the marine search and rescue system, and we work in one of the most challenging search and rescue regions in the world.
Our volunteers conduct, on average, 800 marine rescues every year, approximately 1/3 of all marine emergencies. They stand ready to leave their jobs and their families on a moment’s notice to help people in trouble on the water – no matter how foul the weather or how rough the seas. Our crews are highly trained, and equipped with specialized rescue vessels designed for the challenges of the West Coast.
Our more than 1,000 rescue and SAR prevention crews are all volunteers. They come from all walks of life and are the backbone of our service. They are ready to leave their families and their jobs to answer an emergency callout no matter what time of day and no matter what the weather. Coastal communities rely on them for quick, professional response during a marine emergency.
Interested in volunteering? Contact your local RCMSAR Station to learn more.
Working together with our partners and our communities, we have a Strategic Plan that outlines our vision for excellence in community-based marine safety.
How We Save Lives
We are the volunteer marine rescue service on the west coast and on Shuswap Lake. Our Station crews are ready to respond to marine search and rescue emergencies 365 days a year, 24 hours a day.
Through an agreement with the Canadian Coast Guard we are called out to marine emergencies by the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Victoria. We are also available to provide support for on the water humanitarian aid when called upon by provincial authorities.
We are members of the International Maritime Rescue Federation and part of an international community of volunteer lifeboat organizations such as the Royal National Lifeboat Institute in the U.K, the Royal Netherlands Sea Rescue Institution, the German Maritime Search and Rescue Service, and the Danish Sea Rescue Society. Through conferences and crew exchange programs, we share best practices with our partner organizations and promote the importance of marine search and rescue services.
Our Training Centre
We support our crew development by providing seamanship training at our Training Centre in East Sooke. With this training crew members can advance to coxswain positions and station leadership roles. The Training Centre uses in-class, on the water, and simulator training that offers our volunteers the tools needed to be safe on the water and be ready to respond to emergencies when called upon.
Donate to RCMSAR
Your contributions help support our volunteer training and our keep our equipment in excellent condition. Donations are also used for prevention programs that save lives on the water before a rescue is needed.
© The Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue Inc