Icebreaker smashes through ice off northeast coast of N.B. to help North Atlantic right whales

A coast guard icebreaker is smashing through pack ice off the northeast coast of New Brunswick in an unusual bid to help critically endangered North Atlantic right whales.
    
The goal is to allow local crab fishermen to complete their work in the Gulf of St. Lawrence earlier than usual, which should reduce the number of ship strikes and entanglements.
    
The federal government's decision to move up the start date for the season was announced last month.
    
The coast guard confirmed Wednesday that a light icebreaker has already helped clear ice from Shippagan harbour, on the north side the Acadian Peninsula.