View the newsletter for theAKI Hatchery below
The purpose of this Bulletin is to remind the commercial fishing industry about safety and equipment requirements established by the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010 and the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2012 as well as other applicable laws. These new requirements are scheduled to go into effect by the date(s) set forth under the law.
Mandatory Dockside Safety Examinations: Both Acts mentioned above directed that both State-registered and Federally-documented vessels that meet the following criteria, receive a safety examination no later than October 15, 2015, the date this requirement is scheduled to take effect. The criteria includes: operating beyond 3 nautical miles of the baseline of the U.S. territorial sea or the coastline of the Great Lakes and operating anywhere with more than 16 individuals on board (either inside 3 miles of the baseline or beyond 3 miles of the baseline). These vessels will need to complete this dockside safety examination at least once every 5 years, however, some vessels, depending on their operation or areas of service, may be subject to a more frequent examination schedule.
If you have had your vessel examined recently, the safety decal will remain valid until its expiration and you will be considered in complaince. If you do not have a valid safety decal after October 15, 2015, you could be subject to a civil penalty or operational controls that may affect your ability to fish. To help alleviate last minute exam scheduling backlogs, do not wait until the last minute to request an examination.
Survival Craft: The Acts also deleted the words “lifeboats or liferafts,” and replaced them with, “a survival craft that ensures that no part of an individual is immersed in water…” This means that all commercial fishing industry vessels operating beyond 3 nautical miles of the base line or the coastline of the Great Lakes will be required to carry a survival craft that keeps you out of the water (i.e., a lifeboat, inflatable liferaft, or inflatable buoyant apparatus) in the event of an abandon ship need. Current life floats and buoyant apparatus are not designed to keep an individual out of the water when used in an emergency. This requirement for a survival craft, such as a lifeboat, inflatable liferaft, or inflatable buoyant apparatus that keeps one out of the water, is scheduled to go into effect on February 16, 2016.
AIS: Effective March 2, 2016 all comercial vessels including fishing vessels over 65 feet will be required to carry either a Class A or Class B Automatic Indentification System (AIS). The AIS is a shipboard broadcast system that acts like a transponder, operating in the VHF maritime band. Picture a
shipboard radar or an electronic chart display that includes a symbol for every significant ship within radio range, each as desired with a velocity vector (indicating speed and heading). Each ship “symbol” can reflect the actual size of the ship, with position to GPS or differential GPS accuracy. By “clicking” on a ship symbol, you can learn the ship name, course and speed, classification, call sign, registration number, MMSI, and other information.
Questions regarding these requirements should be forwarded to the First District Office at 617-223-8315 or to your local Sector Vessel Examiner. The examiners and other information can be found on the web site, www.fishsafe.info. Click on local examiners on the left side drop down menu. This bulletin was published for informational purposes only.
At the spring RPT meeting, one of the duties is to review the enhanced salmon allocation plan. Here are some of the slides presented at the meeting.
ADF&G announced the Anita Bay Terminal Harvest Fisheries Announcement today
The USCG has issued for the SE inside waters an exemption from the mandatory dockside examination requirement for commercial fishing vessels fishing outside of three miles. ( SEE MAP for better explanation of waters this exemption pertains to.) This exemption does not waive the necessity of having safety equipment required outside of three miles on-board, it only pertains to the coast guard exam.
The Dept is allowing GKC fishermen an opportunity to review for the next couple of days the draft GHL for the 2015 season. They are accepting feedback over the next couple of days and will finalize the GHL as soon as the Board of Fish meeting is done in Wrangell. Please call the SEAFA office 907-586-6652 or better yet email us firstname.lastname@example.org since we are also at the BOF meeting with your comments and thoughts and we will discuss them with the Dept.
The NMFS 2nd edition of the Black Cod Almanac is now available
Sitka. . . The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced today the following information concerning the 2015 Southeast Alaska gillnet sac roe herring fisheries:
Seymour Canal (Section 11-D): There will be no commercial fishery. The spawning biomass is forecasted to be 1,666 tons which is below the threshold of 3,000 tons necessary to conduct a fishery.
Hobart Bay/Port Houghton (District 10): There will be no commercial fishery. The spawning biomass is forecasted to be 110 tons which is below the threshold of 2,000 tons necessary to conduct a fishery.
Kah Shakes/Cat Island (Section 1-F): There will be no commercial fishery. No significant spawn event occurred in the Kah Shakes/Cat Island area in 2014 to warrant biomass assessment.
West Behm Canal (Sections 1-E and 1-F): There will be no commercial fishery. The spawning biomass is forecasted to be 3,849 tons which is below the threshold of 6,000 tons necessary to conduct a fishery.
The Southeast Alaska Pot Shrimp Fishery Task Force will meet on Tuesday, January 20, 2015 from 7:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. at the Wrangell Fire Hall. Individuals who wish to participate in this meeting via teleconference should contact Dan Gray (747-6688) or Scott Kelley (465-4258) for instructions. Handout materials will be distributed at the meeting and will also be available at the Southeast Alaska Fishermen’s Alliance (SEAFA) website at www.seafa.org prior to the meeting.
Topics for discussion at this meeting will include: 1) a review of the 2014 season; 2) a review of stock status for 2015; 3) a review of experimental strategies in districts 6, 7, and 11; and 4) discussion of regulatory proposals for the 2015 Alaska Board of Fisheries shellfish meeting in Wrangell. Additional discussion items include regional management and economics of the fishery.
Documents will be posted as soon as available
The various Coast Guard re-authorization acts have additional regulations that are being phased in. At the end of this post is a link to the USCG Marine Safety Information Bulletin that we summarized this information from. Some new regulations to pay attention to are:
- Mandatory Dockside Safety Examinations: By October 15, 2015 if you fish outside of 3 miles of the baseline territorial seas (remember there are new lines in many areas for the territorial seas) at least once every five years. If you fall in this category you must have the first exam by Oct. 15th.
- Survival Craft: As of February 16, 2016 the regulation for survival craft will read “a survival craft that ensures that no part of an individual is immersed in water . . . ” if you operate beyond 3 nautical miles of the boundary line.
For the following three categories, click on the link and view the information bulletin.
- Newly Built Vessels
- Load Lines
- Alternate Safety Program