Transport Canada has issued a $6,000 penalty to the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Sir William Alexander for an alleged non-compliance with the temporary mandatory slow-down to protect whales in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

"Our Government is determined to promote the safe coexistence of ship traffic and the marine environment in the Gulf of St. Lawrence,” said Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau. “We are committed to ensuring that all vessels meet the temporary speed limit, and we will continue to take all appropriate action to ensure the safety of the whales."

Last month, Transport Canada implemented a temporary mandatory slow-down of vessels 20-metres or more to a maximum of 10 knots.

The speed restriction applies to vessels travelling in the western Gulf of St. Lawrence, between the Quebec north shore and just north of Prince Edward Island.

Transport Canada says the owner of the vessel will now have 30 days to pay the penalty or ask the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada to review the facts of the violation or the amount of the penalty.