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Old 03-24-2014, 01:37 AM   #21
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USCG Aux inspection stickers really mean very little in many places...knowing what I know about USCGAux inspections...I used to tell my boarding crews to totally ignore them...but it does depend on where and whom is doing the boarding.

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So is an Aux inspection, a waste of time in your opinion?

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Old 03-24-2014, 02:27 AM   #22
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So is an Aux inspection, a waste of time in your opinion?

MB
Well, an aux inspection will probably help bring your boat into compliance so when you actually get boarded by the real coast guard, you'll have a much better experience.
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Old 03-24-2014, 05:43 AM   #23
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HopCar, We thought the wording on the original post was asking how to get boarded also. We're not from Miami, but we thought your reply was funny!
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Old 03-24-2014, 05:51 AM   #24
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The inspection sticker does help, but remember ... the USCG is there to protect us. Be sure your safety equipment is up to snuff and you'll be okay. Any responsible boater would want to have (at minimum) the USCG required equipment.
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Old 03-24-2014, 06:04 AM   #25
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So is an Aux inspection, a waste of time in your opinion?

MB
Depends on you...

If you aren't really up on the different areas of safety gear then it's a maybe because there are some really good ones, some that know the routine well enough but then there are those that overstep and tell you all kinds of things that just aren't true...whether they have anything to do with the inspection or not.

I spent 23 years in the USCG and have had boats all my life...never had a USCGAux inspection.

Waste of time? Hard to say but if you have never seen their checklist...go online and google USCGAux checklist and see how you do. If not sure about some things....even where something should be located...then it may be a good idea. But then follow up to make sure you got the straight tuff
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Old 03-24-2014, 06:27 AM   #26
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Why not just be in compliance? Anything geared towards safety should be welcomed. A random safety and documentation check shouldn't be considered a big deal. If you know your vessel is compliant, your stress level will be greatly reduced. when they give you a copy of the 4100 form, you have a keeper for your doc book.It may get you a pass in the near future.
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Old 03-24-2014, 06:51 AM   #27
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Old 03-24-2014, 07:42 AM   #28
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I have never been boarded but once down in the FL Thousand Is chain (Everglades) we came close. We were departing an overnight anchorage early one morning just getting out into the FL straights (very remote area) when a FL Marine Patrol boat come upon us from the opposite direction. I saw him veer closer to us and I was expecting a stop. He saw both the admiral and I were wearing our inflatable PFD's and suddenly turned away. Can't say the PFD's had anything to do with it though.

It seems the higher up the food chain the more professional they are. CG most professional, local LEO's least so.

I recall two stories in either the Cruisers Net or the Cruising and Sailing Forum of two separate boardings in different areas of FL, both by local LEO's.
The first occurred on the east coast on a 40 something sailboat on the AICW. The Capt. was down below making lunch when suddenly he hears a commotion looks up and see's a local LEO pointing a gun at him and telling him to freeze. They had been boarded w/o permission and before his wife could tell him what was happening. The purpose of the stop was a potty inspection.

The second was on the FL GICW when a local LEO requested and then according to the Capt of the sailboat demanded that the boat stop immediately. According to the Capt and writer of the article he was approaching a bridge in a narrow channel and told the LEO that he would have to wait to board until the boat was in a safe position to do so. He safely secured the boat w/o intervention by the LEO but according to the Capt the LEO's were rude and didn't seem to know the boats limitations or understand the situation.
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Old 03-24-2014, 07:52 AM   #29
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But the crew doing the boarding, while polite and professional, they did not understand some basics- like if you want me to show you something in the engine room while idling on AP, could you get your cohort to keep a watch??? I can either steer the boat or go in the engine room, not both!! No, the boat is under your command, we can't help in that regard, but we do need you to show us some stuff in the engine room. Ok, current is running, shoals nearby, I really need to keep in the channel. If he could just scream if I get shallow, that's fine. They talked for a while, no straight answer, so I just left it on AP and did a quick dive in the ER. Once in there, the guy was pretty dang quick!!!

.
Seems consistent with what I've read. I would probably just tell them I will anchor and they will have to wait until it is safe to do so.

Were the LEO's that stopped you local, state, or GG?
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Old 03-24-2014, 07:56 AM   #30
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I have been boarded a couple of times. Once for a random inspection as I was making the initial cruise from winter storage area to summer slip. Was at the mouth of the Ct River just as I was entering the breakwater to go into LI Sound.
No big deal, two officers came aboard, wife had all the paperwork in order. They asked a couple of questions, I blew the horn for them, and they printed out a "receipt" of sorts.
Didn't really cost me any time.
The second time was at my request as I called for assistance. Once again they were very polite.
On two other occasions when there was a submarine in the area (I boat near Groton, Ct), they came up in their inflatable and asked me to change course once and once to "turn the boat 180 and wait until the sub goes by". So we complied and that was all there was to it.
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Old 03-24-2014, 08:57 AM   #31
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That Coast Guard Auxiliary sticker only means the boat was compliant at the time of the inspection. My slip neighbor asked to borrow my flares for his inspection. He gave them back after he got his sticker.

When they did my boat they were training an inspector. She asked me to turn on my bilge blower and when I told her I didn't have one she started to get indignant. I explained to her that I had a diesel engine and wasn't required to have a bilge blower. The guy training her agreed with me and I guess she learned something that day.

The local Coast Guard Auxiliary patrols the water here in a member's private boat. The registration numbers are italic, not block, and non-compliant. One of these days I'll point that out to them.

As for "real" boardings, we have somehow lost our constitutional rights here but as someone else pointed out anything but cooperation is likely to make an inconvenience into something much bigger.
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Old 03-24-2014, 09:34 AM   #32
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USCG Aux inspection stickers really mean very little in many places...knowing what I know about USCGAux inspections...I used to tell my boarding crews to totally ignore them...but it does depend on where and whom is doing the boarding.

Usually if everything is in order and you have everything handy including things like your waste management plan if over 40ft...and everything is neat and organized...plan on 15-30 minutes tops and it's usually painless.
It is interesting that no one would tolerate a 15-30 stop in their car in this country.
Just saying.
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Old 03-24-2014, 09:54 AM   #33
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CG does not seem to be too aggressive on the northern Gulf Coast. If they board, it's the typical lifejackets, fire extinguishers, flares, bell, stickers, Y valves, etc. They will want to know if you are armed before they board and will hold your firearms while they are on board.

Make sure the entire crew knows where the safety gear is. They might pick someone other than the skipper to show them the gear.

Also, there are new go-fast US Customs and US Border Control boats zipping around the Mississippi Sound. They tend to pass by close and look at you trying to guess your national origin. Go figure.

I know someone who put on one of those pointy Vietnam straw hats when the US Boarder Control boat came by. Apparently, they saw no humor in that.
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Old 03-24-2014, 09:57 AM   #34
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It is interesting that no one would tolerate a 15-30 stop in their car in this country.
Just saying.
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Old 03-24-2014, 10:11 AM   #35
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Went 27 years without a boarding then a couple years ago was boarded, no big deal, in an open area and calm, they were young and with that comes limited experience, just smile and say thank you and all is well. Personally I think they should stop the increase in boardings and focus their energies else where, but that's just me.
I get the Aux inspection every year, but based on the person its questionable process, most appear to want the most inspections in a day award.
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Old 03-24-2014, 11:00 AM   #36
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The value of the "sticker" in terms of avoiding a subsequent boarding probably depends in part on where you are. On the Great Lakes, pleasure boating safety is obviously the primary function for many of the small boat stations. My experience has been that Coast Guard crews specifically look for the sticker. They have circled our boat on several occasions to get to the port side where the sticker resides. When they spot it they have moved on....every time. Last Spring I was pulling into the channel of our home port on Lake Michigan...cold windy day and I had not seen a single boat or ship in 11 hours. Sitting at the far end of the channel was a USCG small boat fairly dripping with Coasties. These folks were clearly looking for business. They motored down the port side, spotted the current sticker and nodded as I cruised by. Now, if they had stopped me, I'd have been on the phone to the Sector Field Office to ask some very pointed questions as to why anyone should bother with the Auxiliary Inspection, and why the Coast Guard supports this program. The District and Headquarters would be next. Yes, they're courteous and helpful....no you don't have to put up with harassment.
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Old 03-24-2014, 11:07 AM   #37
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Seems consistent with what I've read. I would probably just tell them I will anchor and they will have to wait until it is safe to do so.

Were the LEO's that stopped you local, state, or GG?
USCG.

In my experience USCG have been a good bit more professional and polite than local LEO's, as others have posted. Some real horror stories with the locals!!! Fortunately in NC, the locals tend to avoid messing with documented vessels unless doing something obvious. I don't know if that is an actual policy or what. Probably means I am not carrying enough bikinis on display!!!
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Old 03-24-2014, 11:58 AM   #38
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Well, an aux inspection will probably help bring your boat into compliance so when you actually get boarded by the real coast guard, you'll have a much better experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
Depends on you...

If you aren't really up on the different areas of safety gear then it's a maybe because there are some really good ones, some that know the routine well enough but then there are those that overstep and tell you all kinds of things that just aren't true...whether they have anything to do with the inspection or not.

I spent 23 years in the USCG and have had boats all my life...never had a USCGAux inspection.

Waste of time? Hard to say but if you have never seen their checklist...go online and google USCGAux checklist and see how you do. If not sure about some things....even where something should be located...then it may be a good idea. But then follow up to make sure you got the straight tuff

Makes good sense, thanks.
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Old 03-24-2014, 12:00 PM   #39
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Early last summer in Cape May, there must have been a new standing order to check every moving boat. 3 CG boats with multiple crews were buzzing about boarding everyone for about 2 weeks. After the 3rd boarding in 2 days, I moved north to fish in Wildwood. The first boarding took about 15 minutes and were very polite. I kept the yellow inspection slip handy so the subsequent stops were less than a minute.
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Old 03-24-2014, 12:11 PM   #40
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It is interesting that no one would tolerate a 15-30 stop in their car in this country.
Just saying.
Not 15 minutes, but I have been stopped in my vehicle for random safety checks or license and registration checks by the CT state and local police in the past.
I think there is not a choice other than to tolerate it.

I suppose you could try to outrun them, let us know how that works out as I've never tried that.
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