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Old 10-05-2016, 02:58 PM   #1
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Crossed Restricted Bar, Received CG Citation

Yesterday we failed to call the Coast Guard before crossing the Quileute River bar into La Push, Washington. The bar had been restricted earlier and we missed that CG VHF broadcast. Once inside the marina, CG arrived and inspected the boat, and we received a citation for crossing a restricted bar. We posted a video of the stormy ocean and our bar crossing at m/v WILD BLUE Cruising Blog. I expect we will be fined. Alex
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Old 10-05-2016, 04:32 PM   #2
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What a bummer! We pulled into La Push a few weeks back ourselves. Guess I better check all bar crossing on next years trip up north. Hope the fine isn't too bad, good luck.
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Old 10-05-2016, 04:35 PM   #3
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looks like you did very well but had to get close to those rocks. Is it a very narrow opening? How fast were you going?
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Old 10-05-2016, 04:35 PM   #4
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Glad you made it into Port safely. Sorry about the confusion with the bar closing. Watching the videos it is pretty impressive at how effective your stabilizers are.
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:14 PM   #5
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On Tuesday we were cruising down Chesapeake Bay to Norfolk, VA following the route we have used for years. I received a phone call and turned the volume on the VHF way down. About a half hour later we were chased down by a navy patrol boat. They pulled alongside and asked if I had a VHF. I said of course. They said they had been calling me and I had ignored their broadcasts about a military security zone comprised of a 6 mile X 6 mile area. I said I never heard them. They asked what channel was I on and I said 16/13.

They then instructed me to follow them. I did. I then discovered that I had never raised the VHF volume after my phone call. They then passed me off to a second patrol boat and instructed me to follow them. They escorted me out of the security zone. Then they instructed me to stay on a heading of 210 degrees to the Annapolis ship channel. They were courteous at all times and wished me a safe trip.

Now that my radio was back on I heard them contact another boat. They were told to head towards shore as they were 3 miles into the security zone. They were told to proceed at top speed for the safety of themselves and their vessel as a bomb was to be dropped shortly. Holy crap.
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:29 PM   #6
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I have gotten into the habit of calling the CG before crossing. I also wait on weather so I don't run into these issues.


Howard, there is a place in Canada called WG or Whiskey Gulf in which military exercises are held and if you violate it they are not as nice as they were to you.


We also had a sub surface in the middle of Juan De Fuca and the CG were professional, yet not nice when a sail boat sailed into the restricted area. They got real close to boarding and sailing the boat out themselves.
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:41 PM   #7
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Do to never having a bar crossing what does "Voyage Terminated Due to Restricted Bar Crossing" at the end of your blog mean?
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:57 PM   #8
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Was the bar closed, or was the fine for failing to check with the CG?
The conditions don't seem all that bad.
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Old 10-05-2016, 06:38 PM   #9
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Great videos! Thanks for sharing. I subsequently shared your crossing video on our Facebook page.
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Old 10-05-2016, 07:00 PM   #10
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Acquiring the knowledge the bar is "restricted" seems somewhat haphazard. Are there are rules obliging you to check status before each crossing,and a designated way to do it?
Acquiring local knowledge, be it CG or otherwise, before crossing, would be valuable.
I`m thinking of the bar into Lake Macquarie here in NSW. It is immediately seawards of an opening road bridge,there is a channel through the bar,and the channel is known to relocate itself. You can imagine how useful local info could be. I`ve viewed the bar being crossed, but only from land,usually while stuck in traffic at the opening bridge. It looks scary.
Some well used coastal bars here are displayed online by fixed cameras. There are rules for bar crossings, like mandatory wearing of lifejackets.
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Old 10-05-2016, 07:30 PM   #11
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I crossed a bar last night too but it was no big deal, after two pints I needed to go, the pool players didn't mind and the washrooms were clean.

I've never heard of a restricted bar, is it because of conditions or the CG is having their tea?

Area WG openings are broadcast on the weather channel so if you call the CG on channel 16 to ask if it's open you are broadcasting to the world that you haven't listened to the w/x. If you call on 83a nobody except CG listens to that one so fewer fellow Boater's will think you're feckless.
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Old 10-05-2016, 07:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BruceK View Post
Acquiring the knowledge the bar is "restricted" seems somewhat haphazard. Are there are rules obliging you to check status before each crossing,and a designated way to do it?
Acquiring local knowledge, be it CG or otherwise, before crossing, would be valuable.
I`m thinking of the bar into Lake Macquarie here in NSW. It is immediately seawards of an opening road bridge,there is a channel through the bar,and the channel is known to relocate itself. You can imagine how useful local info could be. I`ve viewed the bar being crossed, but only from land,usually while stuck in traffic at the opening bridge. It looks scary.
Some well used coastal bars here are displayed online by fixed cameras. There are rules for bar crossings, like mandatory wearing of lifejackets.
Bruce the Lake Maquarie bar is actually not to bad. We have crossed it a couple of times. It used to be monitored by Swansea Marine Rescue but last time we were there they had consolidated with Lake Maquarie VMR.

The bars further north at Yamba and Ballina can be sporty given the right weather. We do call the Coast Gaurd or VMR before crossing and have heard them issue cautions but I don't know if they can close them.

Alex what does a "restricts bar" actually mean? Do you have to get authorisation to cross it and why was it restricted?

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Old 10-05-2016, 09:26 PM   #13
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Looks as though 33 CFR part 165 applies. They apparently can authorize on a case by case basis, and are suppose to broadcast a Notice to Mariners on 22A.

Might suggest it was worse outside....

www.uscg.mil/d13/cfvs/PDFs/RNABars1.pdf
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Old 10-05-2016, 11:48 PM   #14
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Responses to Questions on Restricted Bar Crossing

Here are responses to questions:

Bayview: The entrance is quite narrow. During the crossing we were varying our rpm from 1100-1500, or 6 to 9 knots, and using generous rudder to help control the boats direction in the big chop.

Dhays: Didn't realize how much the stabilizers were dampening the roll until they automatically disengaged as our speed slowed to 4 knots upon climbing a big swell. Without them the roll was deep and dramatic. We promptly re-engaged in manual mode so they couldn't disengage. The admiral, who is not aboard for this cruise, never allows the stabilizers to be disengaged, even for research purposes, so we learned from this experience.

Mike on RochePoint: "Voyage Terminated Due to Restricted Bar Crossing" is written in the summary section of the citation. Rule 33CFR177 is cited. The CG Officer told me our voyage was terminated until the bar reopens.

Ausan: The bar was closed to all commercial and pleasure traffic. The conditions did not seem bad, especially for a 60-foot trawler. The Officer did not mention a fine. However the fisherman on the boat next to us said a local crossed a restricted bar and received a $1000 fine. That's the basis for us expecting to be fined.

Brett on Jetstream; MRRiley: The officer cited 33CFR177 and said we were supposed to contact the CG for permission to cross.

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Old 10-06-2016, 12:41 AM   #15
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Conditions were pretty good there actually. I used to cross over that bar regularly with my dad on smaller boats than that, salmon trollers. Ever find out why it was restricted or closed? Shouldn't have been on account of conditions I wouldn't think. Pretty nice ocean really judging from your videos.
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Old 10-09-2016, 10:01 PM   #16
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Folks I have been on the Columbia River Bar when it was very rough. You don't mess with it unless you and your crew wants to die. If the bar is restricted, then stay off of it. Follow the USCG instructions.................
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Old 10-10-2016, 12:00 AM   #17
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Folks I have been on the Columbia River Bar when it was very rough. You don't mess with it unless you and your crew wants to die. If the bar is restricted, then stay off of it. Follow the USCG instructions.................
Not on Sea-Duction I hope! Boats like ours don't usually survive the Columbia bar when its very rough.
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Old 10-10-2016, 12:38 AM   #18
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All the bars of the PNW were new to us a couple of years ago. Fortunately we were told to always clear with the CG or be 100% of the status. For instance, when exiting with five fishing charters in front of you, don't need to contact, but traveling alone, always. Now, we were told the restrictions came about not just because of danger to you, but when situations were such that a rescue operation would put CG lives in danger. I have a feeling if you confirm you're not from there and that you didn't know, you'll have a chance to get a greatly reduced fine.
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Old 10-10-2016, 01:01 PM   #19
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I glanced at the CFR (posted above) and recall there was a formula involved that compared wave height and vessel length and freeboard (don't have it in front of me, now). So a bar might be closed to a 30' vessel but not to a 100' one. That might be the "case-by-case."
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Old 10-11-2016, 01:35 PM   #20
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Not on Sea-Duction I hope! Boats like ours don't usually survive the Columbia bar when its very rough.
Now that I have some experience under my belt the Columbia Bar is no big deal if you do it right and under the right conditions.

This was our first experience just after we bought ASD and brought her up from S.F. Yes we just about bought the farm when a hugh wave put us broadside to the waves in the middle of the Bar and it was still open as others up and down the coast were closing.

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