One of two hovercraft stationed at the Sea Island Coast Guard base in Richmond has broken down.
A Coast Guard officer confirmed the craft encountered issues with one of its propeller engines on Friday at about 6 p.m.
The hovercraft was out near Nanaimo where crews were conducting a dive training exercise.
The officer, who declined to give his name, maintained there was no disruption in service, as the other craft was readied for any possible action.
The broken hovercraft was estimated by a witness to be travelling at eight knots instead of its usual 45 knots. The craft, which is more than 10 years old, was scheduled for repair on Saturday.
The recent closure of the Kitsilano Coast Guard base has left critics furious with the federal government.
Marine rescue times at Vancouver, Canada's busiest port, are now expected to be longer because rescue teams must rely on the base in Richmond, some 31 kilometres away.
Critics contend that what traditionally could have been a three-minute rescue, could become a 30-minute body recovery, due to the added travel time of the Sea Island hovercraft.
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