WILMINGTON, N.C. — The Coast Guard set Port Condition Whiskey Wednesday for all navigable waters in the North Carolina Captain of the Port Zone in preparation for the anticipated weather impact of Hurricane Joaquin.
Gale-force winds of 39 mph are predicted to reach Frying Pan Shoals Lighted Buoy 16 (LLNR 8355) within 72 hours, and pleasure craft are advised to seek safe harbor. To enter, transit or remain within this Captain of the Port Zone, vessels must comply with the following requirements.
1) All self-propelled, oceangoing vessels more than 500 tons, all oceangoing barges and their supporting tugs, and all tank barges more than 200 tons desiring to remain in port must arrange safe mooring and shall complete and submit in writing, within 24 hours to the Captain of the Port, an application to remain in port for approval.
2) All self-propelled oceangoing vessels more than 500 tons, all oceangoing barges and their supporting tugs, and all tank barges more than 200 tons departing the port, must depart no later than 24 hours prior to the arrival of gale-force winds at Frying Pan Shoals Lighted Buoy 16.
3) Vessels bound for these ports that are unable to depart 24 hours prior to the arrival of gale force winds at Frying Pan Shoals Lighted Buoy 16 are advised to seek an alternate destination.
Mariners are also advised drawbridges will remain closed when wind speeds are at or more than 39 mph, or once evacuations begin. Due to uncertainty of weather movements and related bridge closures, mariners are urged to seek passage through drawbridges in advance of the arrival of gale-force winds.
Boaters are also encouraged to remove any electronic position indicating radio beacons (EPIRBs), life jackets and life rings from their boat when the boat is moored and unoccupied. EPIRBs and loose gear often trigger false alerts with the Coast Guard and ties up resources that could be used for real search and rescue cases.
For guidance on specific issues or to obtain a vessel application to remain in port, contact the Coast Guard Sector North Carolina Command Center at 910-362-4015. A vessel-remaining-in-port checklist may be obtained at http://ift.tt/1qqwYqP. Select North Carolina in the port directory. The checklist is located under the Local Contingency Plans header.