Two more navy defence ships taken out of service
HMCS Saskatoon arrives in Esquimalt Harbor, B.C., sailing past Fisgard Lighthouse, in this undated DND handout photo. (THE CANADIAN PRESS / DND)
Published Tuesday, December 3, 2013 10:12AM EST
Two military coastal defence ships have quietly been taken out of service in an effort to cut costs, CTV News has learned.
The Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels were docked as a cost-saving measure, according to the Department of National Defence.
In total, five navy ships are no longer patrolling Canada's coasts.
In a statement to CTV News, the DND said the vessels' activities have been reduced for the short-term, "resulting in cost-savings related to operational maintenance and in-service support related expenditures."
"Defence experts that I've spoken to are questioning how this is going to affect the navy's operations," CTV's Mercedes Stephenson told News Channel on Tuesday. "The navy maintains that there will be no impact on maritime security, even though they will have two fewer ships."
In 2010, the head of Canada's navy ordered half of the country's maritime coastal defence vessels to be docked indefinitely, but the decision was reversed following intense political pressure.
The navy operates 12 Kingston-class vessels, but only seven are currently operational.
The ships are responsible for patrolling Canada's coasts, enforcing fisheries laws and participating in search-and-rescue operations.
The latest cuts mean that one less ship will be patrolling each coast.