MARPAC - Maritime Forces Pacific
Canadian Fleet Pacific
- Canadian Fleet Pacific’s (CANFLTPAC) mission is to generate and operate combat-capable multipurpose maritime forces to meet Canada’s defence objectives. The primary objectives in fulfilling this mission include providing well-maintained ships and highly trained personnel.
- Canadian Fleet Pacific also provides leadership to implement broad government programs such as official languages and employment equity. It ensures that environmental stewardship and due diligence is a fundamental component of its day-to-day operations. Another important objective is to take every opportunity to enhance public awareness through a combination of activities that include close contact with namesake cities (for all ships), participating in various community relations opportunities such as the provision of tours for civic groups and engaging in public speaking opportunities whenever possible.
How we do it
- The ships of the fleet can be deployed in a number of roles, as a uniquely Canadian response to a domestic or international need, or as part of a larger multinational deployment. Deployments can involve the insertion of one ship into a multinational force or a large essentially self-sufficient task group of complimentary ships, submarines and aircraft.
- The ships of CANFLTPAC undertake domestic and international missions in support of varied activities such as:
- National and allied exercises and operations, including those under the auspices of the United Nations
- Surveillance operations in conjunction with other government departments
- Coastal patrols, port security, mine countermeasure operations and naval control of shipping, using primarily Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels
- Provide advice to other government departments
- One particular aspect of Canadian Fleet Pacific’s role is sovereignty patrols throughout Canada’s west coast. The main purpose of sovereignty patrols is to assist other government departments in the detection, reporting and deterrence of illegal activities, while providing accurate and timely surveillance information to enable law enforcement. Given the broad expanse of ocean and landmass that is Canada, only the navy and air force have sufficient and capable resources to maintain constant surveillance of the country’s 27,000 kilometers of coastline.
- However, this is duly achieved with the cooperation of other government departments including the:
- Canadian Coast Guard
- Department of Fisheries and Oceans
- Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)
- Parks Canada
- Environment Canada
- Canadian Revenue Agency
- For example, naval vessels work closely with the RCMP in its efforts to control illegal drug traffic into Canada, to educate and support remote communities and to maintain its effective Coastal Watch Program. It will be through combined operations that the maritime surveillance aspects of domestic security will be enhanced in the coming years. Canadian Fleet Pacific, in conjunction with Canadian law enforcement officials from these other government departments, also support the United States Navy, United States Coast Guard and Drug Enforcement Agency for cross-border operations.
CANFLTPAC’s Operational Ships Include:
- 5 Halifax-class frigates
- 1 Iroquois-class air defence command and control destroyer
- 1 Replenishment vessel
- 6 Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels
- 1 Victoria Class submarine
- In the international arena, CANFLTPAC provides combat-ready forces for participation in collective defense operations with Canada’s Pacific allies
Did you know?
- CANFLTPAC personnel and units have also been assigned to Allied and United Nations operations throughout the world.
- CANFLTPAC units work closely with, and conduct regular exercises with the United States Navy.
- CANFLTPAC ships maintained patrol duties in the Persian Gulf region on Operation Apollo, the Canadian contribution to Operation Enduring Freedom, the U.S.-led international coalition in the campaign against terrorism.
- Standing NATO Maritime Group 1, a Special Operations Group, recently conducted its first operation in the South East Asia with support from units from CANFLTPAC.
- Maritime security for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games was provided by CANFLTPAC units as part of Operation Podium.
- Units from CANFLTPAC have been involved in anti-piracy operations off the African coast.
- CANFLTPACs Fleet Diving Unit provides expertise on the disposal of explosive ordinance to the all elements in the Canadian Forces as well as to civilian authorities.
- In addition to either single ship or multi-ship operations and exercises, Canadian Fleet Pacific also works closely with aircraft from CFB Comox and 443 Maritime Helicopter Squadron in Pat Bay (these maritime assets are critical to Canadian Fleet Pacific’s success in meeting its objectives).
- CH-124 Sea King helicopters from 443 Maritime Helicopter Squadron at Pat Bay can be carried on all the major ships.
- CP-140 Aurora long-range maritime patrol aircraft fly from 19 Wing Comox and provide direct support to maritime operations.
- The Aurora patrol aircraft have successfully tracked ships involved in illegal people-smuggling operations, identified polluting vessels and obtained evidence of illegal driftnet fishing in the North Pacific Ocean.
- Aircraft of 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron, the CC-115 Buffalo aircraft and CH-149 Cormorant helicopters, also based at 19 Wing Comox conduct specialized search and rescue missions.
- In a typical year, a CANFLTPAC ship could spend up to 150 days at sea on important naval activities such as sovereignty patrols, search and rescue operations, international military commitments, critical training and exercises, community relations visits and tours.
- CANFLTPAC capabilities will be enhanced in the near future with the modernization of existing ships thru the Halifax Class Modernization refit program and through the acquisition of the new ship borne Cyclone helicopters.
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