Safety excellence in the Nova Scotia fishing industry will be celebrated and recognized at the second annual Splashes of Safety gala at the Westin Hotel in Halifax on Sept. 27.
Organized by the Fisheries Safety Association of Nova Scotia (FSANS), Deadliest Catch star Captain Casey McManus of the F/V Cornelia Marie will be the guest speaker for the evening.
“People are pretty excited about it. We’ve had a huge amount of support for it so far,” said Matthew Duffy, safety advisor for the FSANS in an interview. “Last year we had just under 160 in the room. This year we’re aiming for 200 and we seem to be on track for that.”
The success of last year’s inaugural event not only raised enough funds for fisheries safety training initiatives, it also resulted in a “healthier budget” for this year’s gala, “so with that we will be able to do more for our guests,” said Duffy. “We’re going to have some really great door prizes and are going to raffle off a couple of lobster traps from Rainbow Net and Rigging.”
A silent auction, 50/50 draw, extended cocktail hour, seafood for appetizers and the main course along with the awards presentations should all come together as a fun night, said Duffy.
The celebrations will actually begin that morning with a man overboard drill in Peggy’s Cove aboard the fishing vessel Harbour Mist. McManus will be in attendance. “Hopefully lots of folks will come out to take the opportunity to interact with our guest on a smaller level,” said Duffy. “It makes for a good time.”
Last year, more than 100 people attended the man overboard drill, getting the opportunity to interact with Capt. Keith Colburn, also of Deadliest Catch fame. “It’s always interesting to hear their take on fishing in the Bering Sea,” said Duffy.
As for the safety excellence awards, three will be given out this year. The Fishing Safety Leader Award will be given to an individual person “who has demonstrated safety leadership through their own efforts” and has “made a true impact towards improving safety within the Nova Scotia Fishing Industry,” reads the award criteria.
The Industry Safety Champion Award, will be “given to an organization who has made strong and continuous efforts in increasing safety in the workplace for their employees, membership or peers.”
The Safety Champion of the Year Award which will be named after this year’s platinum sponsors, TriNav Group of Companies and Clearwater Seafoods, will be given to an individual “who has demonstrated a true passion for safety within the industry” and has been “an unwavering voice and cheerleader towards improving safety for the Nova Scotia Fishing Industry.”
Tickets for Splashes of Safety can be purchased and further information is available online at www.splashesofsafety.ca