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Old 05-11-2015, 08:41 AM   #1
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Question head lock out

Recently had a survey done on our boat. The surveyor states that I need a lock out device on the tank discharge. Not sure what he's meaning. Say's it could be a USCG violation.
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:55 AM   #2
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Recently had a survey done on our boat. The surveyor states that I need a lock out device on the tank discharge. Not sure what he's meaning. Say's it could be a USCG violation.
I take it you mean black water sewage holding tank?

If so... do you have "Y" valve with positions for free discharge or discharge "lock out" as the surveyor terms it? If so, there should be two holes that line up in its lock out position. A pad lock or some other secure device is required in most water locations unless miles off the coast in ocean waters.

If you have no valve from toilet to holding tank and/or the free discharge - they are available and depending on location in your boat may be fairly easy to install.
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:09 AM   #3
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Many different ways sanitation systems can be set up...without y-valves and even with leaving the thru hull open in all but some waters.

USCG regs/US Law might be less stringent than local or regional rules. Check what they are and or ask the surveyor what way would the simplest solution for your setup might be.
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:45 AM   #4
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Title 33 - Navigation and Navigable Waters
Volume: 2
Date: 2001-07-01
Original Date: 2001-07-01
Title: Section 159.7 - Requirements for vessel operators.
Context: Title 33 - Navigation and Navigable Waters. CHAPTER I - COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (CONTINUED). SUBCHAPTER O - POLLUTION. PART 159 - MARINE SANITATION DEVICES. Subpart A - General.
§ 159.7Requirements for vessel operators.
(a) No person may operate any vessel equipped with installed toilet facilities unless it is equipped with:
(1) An operable Type II or III device that has a label on it under § 159.16 or that is certified under § 159.12 or § 159.12a; or
(2) An operable Type I device that has a label on it under § 159.16 or that is certified under § 159.12, if the vessel is 19.7 meters (65 feet) or less in length.
(b) When operating a vessel on a body of water where the discharge of treated or untreated sewage is prohibited by the Environmental Protection Agency under 40 CFR 140.3 or 140.4, the operator must secure each Type I or Type II device in a manner which prevents discharge of treated or untreated sewage. Acceptable methods of securing the device include—
(1) Closing the seacock and removing the handle;
(2) Padlocking the seacock in the closed position;
(3) Using a non-releasable wire-tie to hold the seacock in the closed position; or
(4) Locking the door to the space enclosing the toilets with a padlock or door handle key lock.
(c) When operating a vessel on a body of water where the discharge of untreated sewage is prohibited by the Environmental Protection Agency under 40 CFR 140.3, the operator must secure each Type III device in a manner which prevents discharge of sewage. Acceptable methods of securing the device include—
(1) Closing each valve leading to an overboard discharge and removing the handle;
(2) Padlocking each valve leading to an overboard discharge in the closed position; or
(3) Using a non-releasable wire-tie to hold each valve leading to an overboard discharge in the closed position.
[CGH 95-028, 62 FR 51194, Sept. 30, 1997]
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:04 AM   #5
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Recently had a survey done on our boat. The surveyor states that I need a lock out device on the tank discharge. Not sure what he's meaning. Say's it could be a USCG violation.
USCG and also many localities. Actually EPA manages the list. The most common items for authorities to check are safety equipment and discharge.

Here is a link to EPA's list of no discharge zones.

No Discharge Zones by State | Vessel Water Discharge | US EPA

And to add to that, the EPA just approved the largest zone yet, a 1,624 mile long zone. They approved making the entire coast of California a no discharge zone to vessels over 300 Tons. Clearly aimed toward cruise lines and large commercial ships and not the small pleasure boat group.

In general, California, New York and Massachusetts have the most no discharge zones. 27 states have at least one zone.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:32 AM   #6
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Ok, being a newbie boater, I'm confused. Does "no discharge" mean grey water also? Example. I'll be in a marina in Clear Lake, Tx which according to that list is a "no discharge zone". When I take a shower, wash dishes or whatever, grey water goes overboard....how is this impacted by "no discharge", and what do I do about it?
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:23 AM   #7
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"No discharge" does not apply to greywater on recreational vessels. A "no discharge" area is primarily intended to regulate Type I and Type II MSDs. Your marina may prohibit the discharge of greywater, but it is unlikely.

Assuming you have a Type III MSD, all you really need to do is close the holding tank discharge thru hull or put the Y valve in the holding tank position. Secure it with a cable tie so the handle can't be moved and you will be fine.

I remember a Maryland environmental group that proposed to make any discharge of water to include run off from washing your boat illegal. Didn't go very far.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:30 AM   #8
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I just use a tie wrap on my valve. Some also use a key lock on the circuit going to the macerator.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:40 AM   #9
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"No discharge" does not apply to greywater on recreational vessels. A "no discharge" area is primarily intended to regulate Type I and Type II MSDs. Your marina may prohibit the discharge of greywater, but it is unlikely.

Assuming you have a Type III MSD, all you really need to do is close the holding tank discharge thru hull or put the Y valve in the holding tank position. Secure it with a cable tie so the handle can't be moved and you will be fine.

I remember a Maryland environmental group that proposed to make any discharge of water to include run off from washing your boat illegal. Didn't go very far.
Here's similarity "BS armchair doings" - to your last paragraph... but in a different arena. Late 1980's CA mandated that all buckets above 2 gallons could not be manufactured without permanent holes in their bottom. This was to protect infant drowning deaths (sorrowfully, one baby evidently had been found in a filled bucket head first - the rest is history) That mandate only lasted for short time... when it became apparent that all sorts of industry was severely affected regarding projects and their completions... especially construction and restaurants!
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:41 AM   #10
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BlueYonder, thanks! That also answers my next question regarding fresh water washdowns. I plan on using a eco friendly "soap" for for outside maintenance and was wondering about the requirements on that. Again, thanks. Also, I'll check with my marina for any site specific rules.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:46 AM   #11
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BlueYonder, thanks! That also answers my next question regarding fresh water washdowns. I plan on using a eco friendly "soap" for for outside maintenance and was wondering about the requirements on that. Again, thanks. Also, I'll check with my marina for any site specific rules.
Although always wanting to do the correct things for environmental and boating neighbor reasons... the whisper word shush at times needs to come into play. It seems we're all fairly conscientious boaters, we're all trying to act correctly. However, for some items there may be a slip twixt cup and the lip! Thus... whisper!
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:49 AM   #12
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shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh is the word of the day.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:56 AM   #13
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shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh is the word of the day.
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Old 05-11-2015, 12:17 PM   #14
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Recreational boats were exempted from the EPA runoff rules....BoatUS was a major factor in exempting rec boats as well as support from a few boat owning legislators.

It wasn't just a Maryland issue.
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Old 05-11-2015, 01:03 PM   #15
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For the second year when I have my USCG inspection done, the individual doing the inspection was more interested that I had the macerator switch safety wired off than he was on the position of the "y" valve. Never asked to see it.
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Old 05-11-2015, 07:46 PM   #16
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I plan on using a eco friendly "soap" for for outside maintenance and was wondering about the requirements on that. Again, thanks. Also, I'll check with my marina for any site specific rules.
I use the gallon jugs of car wash soap. It's way cheaper, Eco friendly, and designed to not strip the wax.
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:56 PM   #17
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I use the gallon jugs of car wash soap. It's way cheaper, Eco friendly, and designed to not strip the wax.
You mean as sold in NAPA and other auto stores?

I use mild solution of Simple Green.
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Old 05-12-2015, 06:38 AM   #18
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"For the second year when I have my USCG inspection done, the individual doing the inspection was more interested that I had the macerator switch safety wired off than he was on the position of the "y" valve. Never asked to see it."

If this will keep he poop police happy remember aircraft use switch guards that can be safety wired easily.

http://www.ebay.com/bhp/toggle-switch-guard

The red ones


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Old 05-12-2015, 09:46 AM   #19
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For the second year when I have my USCG inspection done, the individual doing the inspection was more interested that I had the macerator switch safety wired off than he was on the position of the "y" valve. Never asked to see it.
I'm curious about the existence of a regulatory requirement to safety wire the macerator switch.

Was this an inspection by the Coast Guard or the Coast Guard Auxiliary? Did the inspector tell you that there was a regulatory requirement to safety wire the macerator switch? Would you have failed inspection if you had the thru hull or Y valve locked shut instead?

I've been boarded and inspected twice in the last three years by the Coast Guard. They checked to see that my holding tank thru hull was locked closed. I have never been asked to show that the macerator pump switch was safety wired off.
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Old 05-12-2015, 10:08 AM   #20
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I frequently move between areas where discharge is and is not allowed. For example, inside the San Francisco Bay I cannot discharge untreated sewage, but when I go out of the Golden Gate and down to Half Moon Bay or beyond, I will be outside 3 miles and able to use my macerator. That means snipping and reinstalling the zip-tie every time I want to discharge. It's not that hard to do - which makes a bit of a mockery of the whole thing. I guess the zip tie is a reminder to think about where you are, and shows the CG you understand you're not allowed to discharge.

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