The History of the LABRADOR

CCGS Labrador was a Wind-class icebreaker. First commissioned on July 8, 1954 as HMCS Labrador under the auspices of the Royal Canadian Navy, she was transferred to the Department of Transport on November 22, 1957. She was among the DOT fleet assigned to the nascent Canadian Coast Guard when that organization was formed in 1962. Labrador's career marked the beginning of the CCG's icebreaker operations which continue to this day.

She extensively charted and documented the Canadian Arctic, and was the first ship to circumnavigate North America in a single voyage, in 1954, transiting the Northwest Passage and back to Halifax through the Panama Canal.

Labrador was also involved in considerable work on the Distant Early Warning Line project. From June to September 1955, she led a task group of 14 Canadian and American ships delivering thousands of tons of supplies for DEW Line sites under construction in the Foxe Basin area of the eastern Arctic, and in following years continued to provide icebreaking and operational support.

Labrador was transferred to civilian control in 1957, and operated under the auspices of the Department of Transport during the four years before the Canadian Coast Guard was formally established. She continued to serve the CCG for 29 years, before being sold for scrap in 1987.

LABRADOR Statistical Data

  • Pendant: 50
  • Type: Icebreaker
  • Class: Wind
  • Displacement: 6,490 (Fully loaded) tonnes
  • Length: 269 ft
  • Width: 63 ft
  • Draught: 26.66 ft
  • Speed: 11 kts
  • Compliment: 224 total crew Officers and Crew
  • Arms: None fitted.
  • Keel Laid: 18-Nov-49
  • Date Launched: 14-Dec-51
  • Date Commissioned: 08-Jul-54
  • Paid off: 22-Nov-57


Transferred to the Coast Guard 22 Nov 57.

Keywords: HMCS LABRADOR, Royal Canadian Navy Ship, Icebreaker, Wind Class