The town of Come By Chance wants an explanation from Transport Canada as to why tug boats operating out of Placentia Bay for North Atlantic Refining Limited can operate with just two people onboard.
On April 28, federal Transportation Minister John Baird announced changes to tug boat regulations in Placentia Bay.
According to reports, tug boats in the bay were supposed to have four-person crews, but the North Atlantic Oil Refinery pressured Baird to allow crews of only two.
Baird relaxed the rules allowing each boat to operate with just a captain and an engineer.
In a news release, the town says that with Placentia Bay being a high-traffic area and prone to fog and high tides, the move is a major safety issue for the residents.
"These tugs are guiding tugs for tankers and also operate as fire and emergency vessels," the release states. "We find the timing of this, give the spill in the Gulf of Mexico, extremely disturbing."