Coast Guard seeks public comment on shallow draft waterway navigation system

SEATTLE — The Coast Guard is conducting a Waterways Analysis and Management System Study on the Shallow Draft System, which applies to waters less than 12 feet deep, to update its policies and make navigable waterways of the United States safer and more efficient.

Our waterways have become increasingly congested and complex. While the number and size of the vessels traveling through the U.S. Marine Transportation System has increased, the number and in some cases size of U.S. navigation corridors has not. The recreational boating industry has also seen steady growth over the last decade further congesting the waterways.

To address these changes and determine navigation requirements for the Shallow Draft Waterway System, the Coast Guard will consider feedback from local maritime partners and stakeholders that operate on the affected waterways.

The study’s purpose is to determine the navigational needs and requirements of vessels operating in shallow draft navigable waterways throughout the country. The study will focus on the existing shallow water Aids to Navigation system, future development projects, waterborne commerce transiting these waters and marine casualty information.

Waterway users, interested parties, and stakeholders are invited to provide comments or feedback via the tool posted here. This link will remain available until Nov. 1, 2020.

Additional questions or comments may be emailed to CGNAV@uscg.mil using the subject line: “Shallow Draft WAMS.”

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