Coast Guard, partner agencies to enforce safety for Gasparilla Parade

A graphic depicts the safety zone during the Jose Gasparilla Pirate Invasion in Tampa Bay, Florida, Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020. The Coast Guard is partnering with multiple local agencies to ensure the safety and security of boaters during the event. (U.S. Coast Guard graphic provided by Sector St. Petersburg)

A graphic depicts the safety zone during the Jose Gasparilla Pirate Invasion in Tampa Bay, Florida. (U.S. Coast Guard graphic provided by Sector St. Petersburg)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary and partner agencies will be enforcing a safety zone for the Gasparilla Parade in Tampa Bay from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., January 25, 2020.

All boaters must stay 50-feet from parade vessels, stay out of restricted areas, and observe all “no wake” zones.

Additionally, jet skis and vessels without mechanical propulsion are prohibited from the parade route. All northbound vessels in excess of 65-feet without prior mooring arrangements and not officially entered in the Gasparilla parade must use the alternate route through Sparkman Channel.

All boaters are advised to monitor channel 16 and contact the Coast Guard or other nearby agency partners in the event of an emergency on the water.

The Coast Guard advises the public to check for a captains license before paying to ride on a boat.

“Charter vessels operating illegally pose a significant hazard to life, property and the environment and can face maximum civil penalties of over $50,000, said Capt. Matthew Thompson, Commander of Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg. “The Coast Guard urges all paid passengers to verify the operator’s credentialing and ask to see the Merchant Mariner Credential. It may save your life.”

All spectators are reminded that it is against Florida law to throw any items into Tampa Bay or coastal waterways of the state- including beads thrown from boats during the parade.

Partner agencies for law enforcement include the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, Tampa Police Department and Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.


If you have any problems viewing this article, please report it here.

Related Posts

Comments are closed.