New commercial fishing vessel safety requirement to take effect Tuesday

Southeastern Coast Guard NewsJACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Coast Guard urges commercial fishing vessel owners and operators to take advantage of voluntary dockside safety examinations prior to the enforcement of a new requirement Tuesday.

The new requirement mandates that all commercial fishing, fish tender and fish processing vessels that operate or transit more than three nautical miles offshore  demonstrate full compliance with all existing commercial fishing vessel safety regulations during a dockside safety examination.

To demonstrate compliance with this new requirement, commercial fishing vessel owners and operators are encouraged to contact Coast Guard fishing vessel safety examiners to schedule an exam and obtain a commercial fishing vessel safety decal. Additionally, fishing vessel owners and operators are encouraged to use the interactive Commercial Fishing Vessel Checklist Generator to find out what equipment is required for issue of the decal. The checklist generator is available at http://www.uscg.mil/d13/cfvs/DocksideExams/vFinal.swf

The examination requirement is one of several new mandates established by the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010.  The act requires a mandatory safety examination for fishing vessels that operate beyond three nautical miles of the baseline regardless of whether the vessel is state-registered or federally documented.  More information about this change and methods for achieving compliance can be viewed at www.fishsafe.info.

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