Canada orders 12 Robert Allan Ltd. designed high-endurance self-righting lifeboats to enhance national search & rescue capability

August 19, 2015

On July 10th, the Canadian Government announced the award of two contracts for the construction of a total of 12 new SAR Lifeboats for the Canadian Coast Guard. Equal numbers of vessels will be built by Hike Metal Products of Wheatley, Ontario and Chantier Naval Forillon of Gaspé, Quebec. The announced total value of the contracts is $89.2 million CAD. For more details of the Government announcement please see this article.

This new design was developed from the successful similar vessels known as the “Severn” Class operated by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) of the United Kingdom. The new Canadian design is larger with a greater range than the RNLI vessel and has been specifically designed to handle the worst weather encountered in the waters off Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. The new design will also be constructed in aluminium rather than FRP as the Severn Class are. The High Endurance Search and Rescue Lifeboats will provide greatly enhanced speed, range and weather operability to the Coast Guard expanding their capability to perform Search and Rescue Missions.

The new Search & Rescue Lifeboats are self-righting and capable of safe operation in extreme weather up to Beaufort Force 12 conditions and are able to survive in 12 meter seas.

This is the fifth new design Robert Allan Ltd. has completed for the Canadian Coast Guard since 2010. Two different designs of Inshore Science vessels and Pollution Response vessels have been delivered and are in service. When these new vessels have entered service, there will be a total of 45 vessels of 5 different Robert Allan Ltd. designs that have joined the Coast Guard fleet since 2011.

The vessel’s particulars are as follows:

  • Length overall: 19.0 metres
  • Length DWL: 17.5 metres
  • Beam, moulded: 6.3 metres
  • Depth, moulded, at midship: 2.58 metres
  • Hull draft, nominal: 1.67 metres
  • Power: 2,400 kW
  • Speed: 23.5 kts

Normal vessel complement is a crew of four with seating provided for two (2) persons in addition. Two (2) survivors on stretchers and up to twelve (12) seated survivors can be accommodated. In support of the vessel’s secondary missions including Aids to Navigation, Environmental Response, Maritime Security, DFO Science, DFO Fisheries and Aquaculture Management and other Government Activities, the vessel can be used to transport up to sixteen (16) supernumeraries in addition to the vessel’s crew.

For more information on this Class of SAR Lifeboat, or any other high-performance vessel designs developed by Robert Allan Ltd., please contact