Coast Guard announces waterway restrictions for Macy’s 4th of July fireworks display

Fireworks burst above the Coast Guard Cutter Harry Claiborne (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Bill Colclough)

Fireworks burst above the Coast Guard Cutter Harry Claiborne (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Bill Colclough)

NEW YORK – The U.S. Coast Guard will establish and will strictly enforce regulated areas on the East River for the annual Macy’s Fourth of July fireworks display, Monday.

A section of the river, south of the Queensboro Bridge and north of the Manhattan Bridge will be closed to all traffic from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.

All spectator vessels may enter the designated viewing areas as early as 7:30 p.m., and must do so no later than 8:30 p.m., Monday. Fireworks are scheduled to begin at approximately 9:20 p.m. Vessels shall be required to hold position, not at anchor and not depart the section until released by the on-scene Coast Guard Patrol Commander. This information will be broadcasted via VHF-FM Channel 13 and 16.

All vessels shall maintain a 100-yard distance from any Coast Guard vessel at all times.

The regulated area will be divided into the following five sections:

1. ALPHA Section (Northernmost viewing area): This section is designated as a spectator area limited to vessels greater than or equal to 20 meters in length (65.6 feet). All navigable waters of the East River south of a line drawn from position 40°45’20″N, 073°57’21″W (57th Street, New York, to 43rd Ave, Long Island City, New York) to a line drawn from position 40°44’58″N, 073°57’41″W (47th Street, New York, NY to N Basin Rd, Long Island City, NY) between the east shore of Manhattan and west shore of Roosevelt Island. Commercial passenger vessels must pass as close to the pier head line as possible and must transit through the zone no later than 7:30 p.m. Vessels must operate at the minimum speed necessary to maintain safe course while crossing through the Alpha Section and take all direction that may be provided by the Coast Guard.

2. BRAVO Section (Northernmost viewing area): This section is designated as a spectator area limited to vessels less than or equal to 20 meters in length (65.6 feet). All navigable waters of the East River south of a line drawn from position 40°45’20″N, 073°57’21″W (57th Street, New York, to 43rd Ave, Long Island City, New York) to a line drawn from position 40°44’58″N, 073°57’41″W (47th Street, New York, NY to N Basin Rd, Long Island City, NY) between the east shore of Roosevelt Island and west shore of Long Island City.

3. INTERIOR DIVISION/CHARLIE Section (Barge Display area): No vessel movements are authorized in this section after 6:00 p.m., without permission from the U.S. Coast Guard. This section is intended to accommodate fireworks display barges and accompanying tugs only. All navigable waters of the East River bound by a line drawn from position 40°44’58″N, 073°57’41″W (47th Street, New York, NY to N Basin Rd, Long Island City, NY), south along the East River to position 40°43’40″N, 073°57’59″W (15th Street, New York, NY to Noble Street, Brooklyn, NY) (See chartlet below). Commercial passenger vessels that need to transit through the Charlie Section en route to their designated viewing areas must receive authorization from the Coast Guard Patrol Commander via VHF Ch 13. Commercial passenger vessels must pass as close to the pier head line as possible and must transit through the zone no later than 7:30 p.m. Vessels must operate at the minimum speed necessary to maintain safe course while crossing through the Charlie Section and take all direction that may be provided by the Coast Guard.

4. DELTA Section (Viewing area): This section is designated as a spectator area limited to vessels less than or equal to 20 meters in length (65.6 feet). This zone is adjacent to the Interior Division/Charlie Section (See chartlet below). All vessels less than 65 feet in length may view the fireworks on all waters of this designated This zone is defined by a line drawn from position 40°43’40″N, 073°57’59″W (15th Street, New York, NY to Noble Street, Brooklyn, NY), south to a line drawn from position 40°43’06″N, 073°58’25″W (Houston Street, New York, NY to Grand Street, Brooklyn, NY

5. ECHO Section (Western viewing area): This section is designated as a spectator area limited to vessels greater than or equal to 20 meters in length (65.6 feet). All vessels over 65 feet in length may view the fireworks on all waters of this designated This zone is defined by a line drawn from position 40°43’06″N, 073°58’25″W (Houston Street, New York, NY to Grand Street, Brooklyn, NY), south to position 40°42′ 20″ N, 073°59’05″W (Montgomery Street, New York, NY to Bridge Street, Brooklyn, NY).
Tugboats, towboats and commercial vessels not observing the fireworks must be outside of the regulated area no later than 6:00 p.m.

“The Coast Guard wants everyone to enjoy the July 4th holiday,” said U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Michael Day, commander Coast Guard Sector New York. “But we want them to do so responsibly, especially if they’re out on the water. Boating under the influence is dangerous at any time of the year but even more so when the waterways are crowded with recreational vessels and fireworks barges. We urge you to never go out unless your boat has the proper safety equipment and encourage that you always wear a life jacket when you’re on the water. So, have fun but live to tell the tale.”

Additional details regarding this event are available on the Macy’s Marine Hot Line at (212) 494-5243 or the Macy’s Annual Events Hot Line at (212) 494-4495.

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