Last night, B.C. Ferries’ Coastal Celebration vessel was forced to stop in the middle of Active Pass along the Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay route when a passenger deployed a life raft and jumped overboard.
The bizarre incident occurred at approximately 9:30 p.m. when a man in his 20s launched a 100-person capacity life raft into the water. He then jumped overboard and reportedly maneuvered the boat to Galiano Island, where a person matching the description of the man was later found.
Both the Coastal Celebration and the Sprit of British Columbia, which was in the area at the time of the incident, deployed rescue boats to search for the man.
The Canadian Coast Guard and Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue were also called in to lead the search for the man.
While it may be rare, federal law maintains that tampering with life saving equipment on a vessel is a punishable offence. Needless to say, if the man is an island resident he will likely have to find another way to get off the island in the future.
— carter blaine toni (@carterbtoni) November 5, 2015
Great work to the staff of @BCFerries – the passenger overboard has been found and we got coffee and hot chocolates for the delay 🙂
— Catherine Novak (@CatherineNovak) November 5, 2015
Captain’s announcement aboard BC ferries suggests man intentionally went overboard on life raft – now on Mayne island. Bizarre twist #yyj
— Rebecca Mersereau (@RJMersereau) November 5, 2015