Coast Guard Terminates Vessels Voyage for Safety and Narcotics Violations

NEW SMRYNA, Fla. – The Coast Guard terminated the voyage of a 57-foot fishing vessel yesterday at 6:45 p.m. after citing the crew with 10 separate safety violations and finding a small amount of narcotics aboard the vessel.

Douglas Meagley, 45, of Ormond Beach, Fla., was piloting the commercial fishing vessel Beau owned by King’s Seafood in Port Orange, Fla., with one crewmember when a law enforcement team from Coast Guard Station Ponce Inlet, Fla., conducted a routine inspection of their vessel on the Indian River near Ponce de Leon Inlet.

The crew found numerous safety violations making the vessel a danger to the crew aboard. Some of the safety violations included improper maintenance and inspection for lifesaving equipment, discrepancies with the vessel’s life raft, expired registration for the vessel’s emergency position indicating radio beacon, expired personal marker lights on the ship’s lifejackets and the high-water bilge alarm in the ship’s engine room did not function just to name a few.

Coast Guard crews called Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission after they realized the crew was using sharks as bait. FWC issued a citation against Meagley.

Also during their inspection, the Coast Guard law enforcement team found a small amount of marijuana under 20 grams and a bag containing cocaine residue in one of common areas aboard the vessel. None of the crewmembers claimed responsibility for the narcotics. FWC is investigating the origin of the narcotics.

The Coast Guard captain of the port ordered the Beau back to Port Orange where it has to remain until all of the safety violations are corrected and the vessel has passed a Coast Guard vessel safety inspection.

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