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Old 01-22-2012, 02:40 PM   #21
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Ordered to raise anchor

The USCG and all marine law enforcement have LIMITED authority.* USCG and most can board for safety inspections only unless probable cause.* They are limited to where they can look and only stuff that's in plain view unless they have probable cause.

A traffic stop for DUI is WAY more of an unconstitutional search because they are looking for SPECIFIC evidence without a warrant...not so with water stops looking for "safety" not criminal stuff (unless in plain view same as on land).* But the courts have upheld traffic stops for certain specific purposes.

The only guys that I know of that can look in small closed spaces/lockers, coolers are Fish and Game guys...but are limited in what they are actually looking for...unless you are dumb enough to keep your*drug or illegal*weapon*stash in cooler.

So no...I'm not outraged at the strong enforcement authority given to water cops as they usually are less abusive of power than shoreside LE and the resutls hopefully outweigh the occasional stop.

In 45 years of boating in heavily populated with coaties and boats in general...none of my boats (both personal and commercial) have ever been stopped by the USCG.* I had one stop by a marine policeman because a friends 5 year old bolted from the cabin without a PFD right in front of him.* I put a jacket on him and he asked a couple*more questions and left with a smile.

So if you get stopped a lot...my suggestion is change something... **



-- Edited by psneeld on Sunday 22nd of January 2012 03:42:05 PM


-- Edited by psneeld on Sunday 22nd of January 2012 03:42:46 PM
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:42 AM   #22
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Ordered to raise anchor

I have been boarded by the CG once for a random safety check. They werre working the channel entrance to the Ct River and just finished a sailboat in front of me. I just knew we would be hit next but I had no place to go.

They annonced they were going to board and to keep my present course and speed (if you call 6 knots "speed" LOL).*2 came aboard. They were more than polite. First mate had all the paperwork in one neat folder, knew where the flares and PFDs were, they were impressed with that. The entire inspection took about 5 to 10 minutes. They printed me a "receipt" of sorts saying to present that if we got stopped again that season and the crew would not board (for a safety inspection).

They came aboard another time when I called for assistance when I shut down for air in the lines of my new to me Albin, smack dab in the middle of the Harlem River. . I wad anchored and had just got the engine fired up when they arrived. Again they were more than polite, very concerned as my finger was wrapped in a bloody paper towel (skinned/pinched finger while trying to coax the Lehman to life). Once they saw it was no big deal they departed and*followed me at my request until I turned*E at Hell gate with the engine still running. Then they waved and ran off.


-- Edited by jleonard on Monday 23rd of January 2012 11:42:50 AM
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:17 AM   #23
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

The USCG has unlimted rights on the water to board any boat, and do any kind of search they feel is warranted. This comes from their origins and the primary mission to stop smuggling. Even though I live on my boat, I don't have the protections afforded people in dirt houses, because I am on a method of transportation.
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:48 AM   #24
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

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Keith wrote:
The USCG has unlimted rights on the water to board any boat, and do any kind of search they feel is warranted. This comes from their origins and the primary mission to stop smuggling. Even though I live on my boat, I don't have the protections afforded people in dirt houses, because I am on a method of transportation.

And that relates to the post I made above.* You lose many of your rights when you step onto a boat.* They can wake you up in the middle of the night and search your house.* On land, they would need probable cause and a search warrant signed by a judge.
*
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:55 AM   #25
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

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Keith wrote:
The USCG has unlimted rights on the water to board any boat, and do any kind of search they feel is warranted. This comes from their origins and the primary mission to stop smuggling. Even though I live on my boat, I don't have the protections afforded people in dirt houses, because I am on a method of transportation.
*Absolutely not...refer to my previous post.* Even the statement about smuggling being their primary mission is incorrect.

Most courts have ordered that liveaboards DO have the same protections.* The only difference being if underway the maritime LE guy CAN stop (read not search anything smaller than a man sized space) for safety.* Not so sure that if your house is suspect of health/safety violations that the city inspectors don't have similar powers.* If they do need a warrant that's only because your house will be there tomorrow when they show up with a warrant where your boat might be at a different marina/anchorage.
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Old 01-25-2012, 04:44 PM   #26
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

Sorry Scott, I don't know where you get your ideas.

From the Coast Guard web site: "Section 89 of Title 14 of the United States Code authorizes the Coast Guard to board vessels subject to the jurisdiction of the U.S., anytime upon the high seas and upon waters over which the United States has jurisdiction, to make inquiries, examinations, inspections, searches, seizures and arrests." Please note, that not only does this basically mean "anytime", it also means almost anywhere. If you are not in another country's territorial waters, and you have a US flagged vessel, you can be boarded by the USCG. http://www.uscgboating.org/safety/fedreqs/law_board.htm.

You also don't seem to know the history of the USCG. You can read up on it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History...es_Coast_Guard

"In 1794, the Revenue Cutter Service was given the mission of preventing trading in slaves from Africa to the United States. Between 1794 and 1865, the Service captured approximately 500 slave ships. In 1808, the Service was responsible for enforcing President Thomas Jefferson's embargo closing U.S. ports to European trade."*
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:18 PM   #27
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Ordered to raise anchor

Quote:
Keith wrote:
Sorry Scott, I don't know where you get your ideas.

From the Coast Guard web site: "Section 89 of Title 14 of the United States Code authorizes the Coast Guard to board vessels subject to the jurisdiction of the U.S., anytime upon the high seas and upon waters over which the United States has jurisdiction, to make inquiries, examinations, inspections, searches, seizures and arrests." Please note, that not only does this basically mean "anytime", it also means almost anywhere. If you are not in another country's territorial waters, and you have a US flagged vessel, you can be boarded by the USCG. http://www.uscgboating.org/safety/fedreqs/law_board.htm.

You also don't seem to know the history of the USCG. You can read up on it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History...es_Coast_Guard

"In 1794, the Revenue Cutter Service was given the mission of preventing trading in slaves from Africa to the United States. Between 1794 and 1865, the Service captured approximately 500 slave ships. In 1808, the Service was responsible for enforcing President Thomas Jefferson's embargo closing U.S. ports to European trade."*
*I guess the 23 years of being a USCG officer and retiring a full Commander was a waste of my brain power.

Just because USC grants the authority to do so...the legal proceedure isn't all that simple.* A safety boarding anytime yes...same law applies at sea as ashore..if you need a warrant*ashore for a specific search...the same would apply at sea.* A safety stop doen't grant unlimited search authority.

Feel free to contact a maritime lawyer if you want...I know what I'm talking about... so have at it.* At sea I witnessed or participated in boardings from Alaska's Bearing Sea/North pacific, vast North Atlantic, Carribean, Panama, Costa Rico and*Mexico.* All pretty much under the same rules and orders for 20 years.

As for their history...I had to recite it between hundreds of pushups at OCS for 4 months.

Read up a little more on the whole history and see where all the USCG history comes from and what has been the most overwhelming mission for the last 50 years...then even as it changed for homeland security.* Lecturing me on USCG history is almost comical.



-- Edited by psneeld on Wednesday 25th of January 2012 06:20:45 PM



-- Edited by psneeld on Wednesday 25th of January 2012 06:21:59 PM


-- Edited by psneeld on Wednesday 25th of January 2012 06:31:48 PM
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Old 01-26-2012, 06:04 AM   #28
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

OK, I'll print your response to hand to the next USCG personnel who come on my boat, so they'll know their limitations.
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Old 01-26-2012, 02:44 PM   #29
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

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OK, I'll print your response to hand to the next USCG personnel who come on my boat, so they'll know their limitations.
*Cute...but in reality they know their limitations, I know their limitations...you just don't.*

Sure they can board...but their powers ARE limited..not unlimited.
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Old 01-26-2012, 06:14 PM   #30
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

Quote:
psneeld wrote:
The USCG and all marine law enforcement have LIMITED authority.* USCG and most can board for safety inspections only unless probable cause.* They are limited to where they can look and only stuff that's in plain view unless they have probable cause.

*Question:* Can they look in the E/R or other areas to check that the holding tank and head*valves are set up and*secured in the proper positions etc?

Also:* when I first bought my boat there was a time when I honestly didn't know where those valves were located.* Would/Should they have given me a ticket if I had been stopped?

Now I'm legal, but when I first delivered our boat the macerator pump was set to pump overboard and was tied down in that position!* Ouch!
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Old 01-26-2012, 06:47 PM   #31
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

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Egregious wrote:psneeld wrote:
The USCG and all marine law enforcement have LIMITED authority.* USCG and most can board for safety inspections only unless probable cause.* They are limited to where they can look and only stuff that's in plain view unless they have probable cause.

*
*Question:* Can they look in the E/R or other areas to check that the holding tank and head*valves are set up and*secured in the proper positions etc?

Also:* when I first bought my boat there was a time when I honestly didn't know where those valves were located.* Would/Should they have given me a ticket if I had been stopped?

Now I'm legal, but when I first delivered our boat the macerator pump was set to pump overboard and was tied down in that position!* Ouch!

*Yes to the engine room and most bilge spaces...the legal description for areas they could/can go into or look into were always called "man sized spaces"...another description would be public or manned spaces...however bilge spaces are supject to inspection for too much water or pollution in the bilge.* What they are NOT allowed to look into without warrant or permission would be drawers, lockers, under seats/berths...etc...etc because they aren't really part of a safety inspection.

As far your holding/head discharge*handles...yep could have been fined but from what I've been told...it's a rarity in most places.

*
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Old 01-27-2012, 05:05 AM   #32
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

Yes when I was boarded they asked to see the holding tank. However since I was in a river in a place where I could not leave the helm, my wife was below showing the documents. She*was not*really able*to move furnature and lift hatches, so they did not inspect in there. I believe that since all of our documentation was very organized in one binder *and all in order they figured the rest of the boat was as well.

Like I said, the crew was more than polite and considerate.
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Old 01-27-2012, 06:11 AM   #33
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

What documents, other than the CG (Homeland Security) Certificate of Documentation, and State registration/tax sticker if applicable, does the CG want to see?
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Old 01-27-2012, 06:27 AM   #34
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

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dwhatty wrote:
What documents, other than the CG (Homeland Security) Certificate of Documentation, and State registration/tax sticker if applicable, does the CG want to see?
*Depends on what waters you are on but in general here's a recent article* written by an active duty coastie....a good idea is to get the USCGAUX examination decal (not that it's necessarily a great inspection or the Auxiliarist doing it knows anything other than their opinion and other only somewhat useful info...some are great tho!)...because often if the decal is clearly seen...they will leave you alone if in busy US waters.

In the event, you have neither a recent CME decal or CG Boarding Report, the boarding officer will inspect your boat. The boarding officer will first ask to see a Certificate of Registration or a Certificate of Documentation. In most cases, boaters carry a state registration. The registration must be current and it must be an original. Also, a state drivers licence (not mandatory) will be requested to confirm ownership on the registration. Unfortunately, too often, many boaters carry a current registration decal on the boat hull, but fail to carry the original registration certificate aboard. In that event, the boarding officer must call in to confirm ownership. Registration checks sometimes can take longer than the inspection.

So, make sure you carry a current registration aboard. By the way, the information on the registration- like year built, hull identification number, address, etc. are required on the 4100 form. In addition, the 4100 form contains a list of equipment and safety items required on aboard recreational boats. This list varies according to the boat size. Lack of safety equipment will draw a violation, or a warning may be issued depending on the discrepancy. If theres no offenses, the boater will be issued a good as gold 4100 yellow copy.

In the event, a violation is noted, a copy of the 4100 form will be mailed to a CG hearing officer who will then make a judgment on the violation. First time offenders normally are directed to correct the discrepancy and to show proof. If cited again for the same violation, expect a fine.

Obviously, the best way to avoid violations is to be squared away. Thats why were passing the word now at the season start so you can make your boat as good as gold. How do you do that? Get your hands on The Federal Requirements and Safety Tips for Recreational Boats pamphlet. This excellent user friendly, all you-need-to-know hand-size brochure is your ticket to passing a Coast Guard boarding, but better yet its a sure ticket to a safe boating season. You can obtain one at your local Coast Guard Station or call the Coast Guard Boating Safety Infoline at 800-368-5647 (Alexander Virginia) to have one mailed.
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Old 01-27-2012, 12:19 PM   #35
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Ordered to raise anchor

Quote:
dwhatty wrote:
What documents, other than the CG (Homeland Security) Certificate of Documentation, and State registration/tax sticker if applicable, does the CG want to see?
*Like everything to do with enforcement folks--- customs, immigration, police, USCG, etc--- a lot depends on the individuals doing the inspections or processing the paperwork.* This is as true in China or Norway or ______ as it is here.

We have been boarded twice by the USCG so far.* In each case we were asked if the boat was documented* which it is (which I suspect they already knew), at which point they wanted to see the documentation papers. They were not interested in our state registration or whether or not we had a current state registration decal on display.* And at some point during their boat inspection they wanted to see the documentation number on the boat itself, which in our case is in on the inside of the transom in the lazarette courtesy of a previous owner.

I suspect had we not been a documented boat they would have wanted to see the state registration as that's the other thing on the boat that shows who owns it.

They did not ask us for personal identification.* At least I don't remember them asking us for it.* I was at the wheel both times and I don't recall having to get my wallet out to show them my Washington license.

They did not ask to see proof of insurance although we have it on board.* They did not ask if we had a current customs sticker.* They did not ask to see the dog's vaccination papers (which we have on board).* They did want to see the "don't dispose of crap overboard" placards.* On one occasion they wanted to see our carbon monoxide warning sticker.

None of this means they won't ask you for any of the things our two boarding parties didn't ask us for--- the potential is always there so Scott's recomendation to have all your bases covered is a smart one.

PS--- A great example of how all this is at the whim of the officials on the scene occured when our current dog, Albi, was just a puppy.* We were heading back to port across Bellingham Bay and Albi indicated that he wanted to go out on deck NOW.* So my wife took the helm and I took Albi out.** He went to the foredeck where he lifted his leg against the side of the forecabin and peed forever as dogs sometimes do.* I stood there facing forward watching him and as he finished there was a roar right beside me.

I turned around to see one of Immigration's big gray, triple-engined SAFE boats doing a full power 180 right beside us and it accelerated away across the bay.* I took Albi back inside and asked my wife what the deal was.* She said the Immigration boat had approached from our starboard quarter with it's lights flashing.* As they got up beside us they had spotted Albi peeing on the foredeck and they all started laughing.* My wife gestured to them "do you want me to slow down" and they continued laughing and waved an "okay" and roared off which is when I became aware of their presence.

Note to drug and human traffic smugglers--- Always have a puppy on board who has to pee.


-- Edited by Marin on Friday 27th of January 2012 01:34:39 PM
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Old 03-15-2012, 12:47 PM   #36
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

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FlyWright wrote:
Last June, I was approaching Port Chicago while a large ship was being loaded with munitions.* I was approached by the USCG and very politely and almost apologetically directed to follow a secondary channel further from the loading dock.* I found the CG personnel to be extremely professional and pleasant.* No complaints here.* They're just doing their jobs and I'm glad they are there.
We've had*a similar*experience in the same place.* Smiling young men with large guns.* very professional.* Can't complain.
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Old 03-16-2012, 04:25 AM   #37
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RE: Ordered to raise anchor

It has been my understanding that the only people that can have you stopped and perform an "EVERYWHERE" inspection (usually they are in a USCG little boat) are the agriculture and insect folks.

In Fl the "Land of Bugs and Drugs" this is more common for cruising boats near the better deeper inlets .
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