Home Living Above & Beyond Creating resources for safer travel on sea ice

Creating resources for safer travel on sea ice

© SmartICE (2)

Andrew Arreak, a regional operations lead for SmartICE, has spent more than a year digitizing and analyzing more than 4,000 satellite images of Pond Inlet sea ice to create a sea ice atlas. The images include a series of 230 maps, 10 for each year for two decades of data. The imagery is interpreted using Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit. 

The project includes the documentation of sea ice terminology to help travellers navigate around dangerous sea ice areas. 

The project culminated in the creation of two useful posters for those preparing to travel on sea ice and for travelling on it. Posters include reminders about weather conditions and lunar tides, communication, navigation, shelter and protection, and ways to check for ice strength. 

Although this project is specific to Pond Inlet, SmartICE believes it would be a useful model for other communities that can be customized to suit the needs of different communities. 

Sikumiut, a group of Inuit elders, search and rescue members, hunters and other community representatives, help manage and guide the program. Katherine Wilson, a PhD candidate with Memorial University of Newfoundland and chief of strategic policy and planning at the Canadian Ice Service, was also involved with the project.