Coast Guard halts illegal charter near Baker’s Haulover Inlet

33-foot Special Purpose Craft-Law Enforcement

33-foot Special Purpose Craft-Law Enforcement

MIAMI — The Coast Guard terminated the voyage of two pleasure crafts operating as illegal charters Saturday near Baker’s Haulover Inlet.

A Coast Guard Station Fort Lauderdale 33-foot Special Purpose Craft-Law Enforcement boat crew conducted the boardings of the pleasure crafts, Roe Boat and Colleen Marie, each with 10 people aboard, and discovered the following violations:

  1. Violation of 46 C.F.R. 176.100A for not having a valid Certificate of Inspection.
  2. Violation of 46 C.F.R. 16.201 for failure to have a drug and alcohol program.
  3. Violation of 46 C.F.R. 170.120 for failure to have a valid stability letter.
  4. Violation of 46 C.F.R. 67.7 for a vessel of greater than 5 gross tons not having a certificate of documentation with appropriate endorsement.

“If you are planning to charter a vessel, always ask the vessel captain to see his or her credentials and a certificate of inspection, it’s your right, before you depart the dock,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Alexander Cornelius, a boarding officer with Station Fort Lauderdale. “Especially this weekend and the week prior to Super Bowl LIV, we want you to enjoy yourselves on the water safely. We remind you to have a designated boater, as boating under the influence is just as dangerous as drinking and driving a motor vehicle, and just as illegal.”

Owners and operators of illegal charter vessels can face maximum civil penalties of $59,000 for illegal passenger-for-hire-operations and over. Charters that violate a Captain of the Port Order can face over $94,000 in penalties. Some potential fines for illegally operating a charter vessel are:

  • Up to $7,710 for failure of operators to be enrolled in a chemical testing program.
  • Up to $4,803 for failure to provide a Coast Guard Certificate of Inspection for vessels carrying more than six passengers.
  • Up to $16,398 for failure to produce a valid Certificate of Documentation for vessels over 5 gross tons.
  • Up to $12,007 for failure to have been issued a valid Stability Letter prior to placing vessel in service with more than six passengers.
  • Up to $94,219 for every day of failure to comply with a Captain of the Port Order.

“If you are visiting Miami this weekend and throughout next week, be extremely careful with who and how you book a trip on the water,” said Lt. Cmdr. Jason Neiman, District 7 public affairs officer. “Illegal charters are dangerous, the operators only care about your money, and not your safety. If you are celebrating the Super Bowl on the water, double check that your operator has the credentials to be your Captain.”

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