PORTSMOUTH, Va. – Due to continued shoaling in the Queens Creek Channel, which is located in Mathews County off the Piankatank River, the Coast Guard is preparing to change the aids to navigation marking this federal navigation project to warning daybeacons.
Numerous changes in the location and types of aids-to-navigation have assisted in keeping the waterway open for the past several years. A condition survey conducted in November 2007 indicated a least depth of 1.7 feet. Coast Guard Aids to Navigation Team Milford Haven, based in Hudgins, Va., attempted to relocate aids to mark best water, but can no longer safely mark the channel.
As a result the Coast Guard will remove two buoys and change ten additional lateral aids to navigation to non-lateral warning day beacons in order to warn the waterway users of the shoaling in the waterway. Advance notice of these changes has been published in the Local Notice to Mariners.
Under the United States Code of Federal Regulations (14 USC 2), the Coast Guard shall develop, maintain, establish, and operate, with due regard for the requirements of national defense, aids to maritime navigation for promotion of safety on and over the high seas and waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
In addition, C.F.R. (14 USC 81), states that in order to aid navigation and prevent disasters, collisions, or wrecks, the Coast Guard may establish, maintain, and operate aids to maritime navigation required to serve the needs of the Armed Forces or of the commerce of the United States.