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CBC-TV's the fifth estate probest the sorry state of Canada's Maritime search and rescue capabilities

The North Atlantic Ocean is one of the most hostile marine environments in the world. The Atlantic-Canadians who make their living from the fishery, merchant shipping and offshore oil and gas go about their work shadowed by an ever-present danger. So why, then, must they rely on a search and rescue service with one of the slowest response rates in the world?

On Friday, Sept. 30, at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT), on CBC-TV, the fifth estate's Linden MacIntyre presents Mayday, a detailed look at the questionable state of Canada's maritime search and rescue capabilities. Hear the painful memories of those who have survived brushes with death, and the stories of those who perished in the frigid waters, waiting for rescue. There are stunning new details about the tragedy of the Melina and Keith II, on which four men perished in 2005.

We'll meet the man who grounded Canada's new fleet of Cormorant search and rescue choppers after finding major cracks in a key part of the tail rotor system--and now says he paid for his diligence with his job.

Once widely admired, now plagued with problems, our maritime rescue fleet now boasts one of the slowest emergency response times in the world, and MacIntyre asks why the Department of National Defence believes three helicopters are sufficient to cover the search and rescue needs of an area the size of Europe, and why required response times can stretch up to two hours.

Executive producer of the fifth estate is Jim Williamson. CBC-TV rebroadcasts the fifth estate on Sundays at 11 p.m. (11:30 NT). CBC News Network rebroadcasts the fifth estate on Sundays at 7 p.m. ET, and Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT.
For more information on the fifth estate, visit our website at www.cbc.ca/fifth, join us on Facebook and follow us on twitter.

About CBC/Radio-Canada
CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada's national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. The Corporation is a leader in reaching Canadians on new platforms and delivers a comprehensive range of radio, television, Internet, and satellite-based services. Deeply rooted in the regions, CBC/Radio-Canada is the only domestic broadcaster to offer diverse regional and cultural perspectives in English, French and eight Aboriginal languages, plus seven languages for international audiences. In 2011, CBC/Radio-Canada is celebrating 75 years of serving Canadians and being at the centre of the democratic, social and cultural life of Canada.

For further information or to request an interview, contact:
Melissa Prince
Veritas Communications
416 482-2669 (o)
416 704-8733 (c)

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