Wednesday, November 02, 2011
The 3-minute nationwide test will kick off at 1400 EST and run concurrently across all time zones. This is the first such test to broadcast a simultaneous message to the entire American public.
Local police and emergency management officials want to eliminate undue public anxiety and urge you to share this information with family and friends so they are aware of the test. The TV test message might not indicate that it is just a test, which could cause people to panic.
Please see the following websites for more information regarding this test:
FEMA: Nationwide EAS Test Information
A National Dialogue On The Emergency Alert System (EAS)
Monday, October 31, 2011
BoatUS urges local and traveling boaters to speak up about how this anchoring restriction might affect them. Current mooring fees for visiting (non-resident) boaters in St. Augustine are $20 daily and $120 weekly. Written comments can be filed online before Sunday, 6 Nov., at www.myfwc.com/boating/anchoring-mooring/public-comment.
St. Augustine is one of five cities in the state’s mooring and anchoring pilot project, which allows municipalities to develop ordinances that limit nearby anchoring. For more background information on anchoring laws in Florida, see the new BoatUS information sheet.
Monday, October 24, 2011
Global Search and Rescue - EPIRBs, PLBs and Related Locator Devises
*The webinar will be recorded and available to watch if you were not able to attend the live session, or if you just want to watch again.
- Unique link to attend the webinar session on November 15
- Informative handout to go with the subjects
- Credit to your USPS University Certificate for attending the entire session
- Click “Register Now” below to register to attend.
- After submitting the registration form, you will be forwarded to PayPal to pay the registration fee. *A PayPal account is NOT required to make a payment, just a major credit card.
- You will receive a confirmation email from us and from PayPal.
- A few weeks prior to the live webinar broadcast, you will receive another email with your unique link to attend the webinar, along with the electronic materials that go along with the topics, and instructions on how to attend.
Thursday, September 08, 2011
Power Squadron Spit (N 34.6226 W -076.524) appears on the Cape Lookout map at the National Park Service website http://www.nps.gov/calo/index.htm and nautical chart 11545.
Under the Cooperative Charting Program, conducted in coordination with the Marine Chart Division of the National Ocean Service, USPS members compare chart information to actual water depths, navigational aids and topography so corrections may be made to improve mariners’ safety. Members also supply data on range status and tidal current surveys and report damaged or misplaced Aids to Navigation. According to NOAA, the Cooperative Charting Program is recognized as the most effective Federal user-participation program.
A commemorative plaque honoring the squadrons for their efforts was originally affixed to Cape Lookout Lighthouse, then owned and operated by the U.S. Coast Guard. The plaque was later moved to the U.S. National Park Service headquarters for Cape Lookout National Seashore on Harkers Island.
A delegation of squadron members from Winston-Salem, N.C., originally presented the plaque to President Richard Nixon in 1972. Afterward Ronald C. Rau and Don Soefker departed for the Cannon House Office Building with the plaque; they were joined by Chief Commander Walter Cosdon and National Ocean Service officers. The party proceeded to the office of North Carolina Rep. Wilmer Mizell. The plaque was subsequently installed at Cape Lookout Lighthouse.
In the summer of 2002, Cdr. Dean Lee, commanding officer of the U.S. Coast Guard group at Fort Macon, advised Ken Link that he would remove the plaque from Cape Lookout Lighthouse in preparation for turning over the property to the U.S. National Park Service. The beacon is one of many Atlantic Coast lighthouses that have come under the management of the National Park Service. Lee asked that Fort Macon Power Squadron keep the plaque during the transition.
On 15 May 2004, USPS members visited Cape Lookout to rededicate themselves to Cooperative Charting. Headed by District 27 Commander L. Stephen Puckett, 30 members attended the ceremony, including USPS National Executive Officer Ernest G. Marshburn. Also present were North Carolina Rep. Jean Preston and Bob Vogel, Superintendent of Cape Lookout National Seashore.
On 30 March 2006, Fort Macon Sail & Power Squadron members presented the plaque to Cherry Payne, acting superintendent of the U.S. National Park Service Cape Lookout National Seashore, at the headquarters on Harkers Island. The plaque was installed in the Light Keeper’s Quarters Museum.
Fort Macon Sail & Power Squadron will host the 40th Anniversary celebration of the naming of Power Squadron Spit on 10 Sept. 2011 at 1400 at the Lighthouse Keeper’s Quarters Museum at Cape Lookout National Seashore. Bruce Brill is in charge of the event (252-726-3119), and D/27 Commander Michael McCulley will speak. Cape Lookout National Seashore Superintendent Patrick M. Kenney and his staff will attend.
Squadron members will be able to climb the Cape Lookout Lighthouse from 1230 to 1330 to view Power Squadron Spit.
Press may contact Dick McKeon at 252-463-0208 to see if lighthouse tickets are available and should bring lunch, water, sunscreen and insect repellent. For press corps transportation to Cape Lookout to cover this event, see the list of ferry services at http://www.nps.gov/calo/planyourvisit/ferry.htm or contact JB Bagby (703-507-1745) for assignment to a Fort Macon Sail & Power Squadron vessel, departure locations and times. –Kenneth D. Link and JB Bagby
Monday, August 29, 2011
USPS and the Coast Guard Auxiliary are committed to improving boating safety through increased boater education, vessel examinations and public awareness events.
“With this cooperative effort we will reach out to the growing population of recreational boaters providing needed training and vessel exams to keep them safe on the water,” said Jim Vass, Auxiliary National Commodore.
"The USPS is proud to continue our partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary as we continually strive to improve the boating experience for recreational boaters,” noted Frank Dvorak, USPS Chief Commander.
Monday, August 22, 2011
Perhaps you have heard some of the strange and extreme stories of boaters who sustain damage to their vessels on the water. Last season, a couple day-sailing encountered a forty ton whale which crash landed on (and totaled) their boat. In the Bahamas, some US college students on spring break helped rescue a grounded 50 foot yacht, and then claimed “salvage” rights to the vessel when the captain took his crew ashore by life raft. Yet while most boaters’ sense of boating risk involves physical damage from causes ranging from collisions to lightning strikes, the big dollar claim settlements are often not about the value of the hull or damage to property. The greatest financial exposure that boaters face on the water is liability claims arising from bodily injuries to others.
Last year the US Coast Guard responded to 736 boating fatalities and 3,358 injuries on the water*. In the Northeast, the fatality rate exceeded 7.5 deaths per 100,000 registered vessels. While the hull damage in those accidents totaled $36 million, the unpublished value of the medical expenses and the law suits arising from these accidents will dwarf the property payout. Rising health care and litigation costs, and the protracted nature of valuing personal injuries and establishing liability will only amplify the ultimate settlement costs. In a single accident on the Connecticut River last year three fatalities and the permanent impairment of a young man will set a new bar for the monetary and emotional damages sustained in a recreational boating accident. And while the Coast Guard reports operator inattention, inexperience, excessive speed, improper lookout and alcohol as the top five contributing factors in accidents, it is often not the owner of the boat who is operating the vessel at the time of an accident. It is the boat owner however, whose assets are exposed when a boating accident leads to severe bodily injury.
The implications for smart boaters are two-fold.
1. First, through attention to safety, severe injuries can be avoided altogether. Only 14% percent of deaths occurred on boats where the operator had received safety instruction. Conversely, 84% percent of drowning victims were reported not to be wearing a life jacket. Clearly, proactive attention to safety prevents severe injury on the water.
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Tuesday, August 09, 2011
The Alliance for Safe Navigation, of which USPS is a founding member, asks all recreational boaters to complete a brief survey designed to gauge their awareness of navigational tool updates and accuracy. This year’s survey also gathers data on groundings and their relationship to a lack of accurate navigational tools.
While most boaters use GPS, electronic charts and paper charts, a 2010 survey of 7,570 boaters revealed that most respondents do not routinely purchase current charts that reflect the U.S. Coast Guard’s weekly updates. Local Notice to Mariners updates contain critical information such as shifting shoals, moved buoys and newly submerged obstructions.
“Significant and frequent changes on—and under—the water happen, and boaters need to remain aware of these changes to ensure their safety,” said David Enabnit, technical director at NOAA’s Office of Coast Survey. “The Alliance for Safe Navigation strongly suggests that updated navigational tools are the best approach to safe navigation.”
To see the latest USCG Notice to Mariners for your location, visit Notice to Mariners. For more information or to find out how many changes have been made to your charts, go to www.allianceforsafenavigation.org.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
The award recognizes those in the boating education field who go above and beyond to engage new and current boaters, raise awareness and make boating education initiatives relevant, thorough and exciting.
Florida’s boating law administrator and NASBLA representative, FWC Capt. Richard Moore worked with a committee that unanimously selected Hugli for his passion for safe boating, use of innovative education techniques, delivery of risk-based education and active support of state boating safety goals.
A 21-year member of USPS’ Fort Walton Sail & Power Squadron, Hugli has written four boating safety seminars and a student manual for new boaters.
“Many people have busy lifestyles and a limited ability to commit to traditional classes,” Moore said. “Dr. Hugli has pioneered creative solutions to address this.
“He is thoroughly involved with boating safety education and training at all levels and truly understands the goal of educating the public--reducing risk and ultimately saving lives.”
Hugli will now compete with nominees from other states at both the regional and national level. The three regional winners will win a trip to the NASBLA Annual Conference, where the national winner will be announced.
Monday, July 25, 2011
Sweet, Pam Dillon and Joseph Connolly II have been chosen to represent public interests on the new Education Standards Panel. Anthony Cardoza (N.H.), Ed Huntsman (Ariz.), Jeff Johnson (Alaska), MariAnn Koloszar (Ore.) and Betsy Woods (Tenn.) will represent state interests.
Representing federal boating agency interests are John Malatak (U.S. Coast Guard) and Robin Freeman (U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary).
Cindy Kalkomey (BoatEd) and Kerry Moher (BoaterExam) represent commercial interests, and John Adey (American Boat & Yacht Council), Joe Gatfield (Canadian Power & Sail Squadrons) and Terry Leitz (National Marine Manufacturers Association) represent nonprofit interests.
The panel will review the National Boating Education Standards on a five-year basis beginning with the most currently approved version. After the panel organizes its work, an initial call for proposed revisions to the standards will be announced along with instructions for submissions. The standards document up for review and other resource items will be made available on the NASBLA website.
To learn more about the Education Standards Panel, its rules and the appointees, please visit http://www.nasbla.org.
Wednesday, May 04, 2011
National Boating Safety Advisory Council 87
Appropriate Regulations for Life Jacket Wear by Recreational Boaters
United States Power Squadrons Position Paper
In more than a decade of boating accidents leading to fatalities, it is clear that 80 percent of deaths were due to drowning. Of those, the United States Coast Guard determined that more than 80 percent of victims would have survived had they been wearing a life jacket. In spite of more states and territories adopting various mandatory boating safety education requirements, there has not been a significant decrease in the annual accident, injury and fatality rates. Both Congress and the Administration have made it clear to the Coast Guard that this is a priority.
In 2010, the United States Coast Guard Office of Boating Safety brought a request to the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC) to evaluate whether the Coast Guard should pursue legislative measures to establish mandatory wear of life jackets for boats under 18 feet or to come up with any other recommendations regarding boat type or activity. There followed in a series of meetings of a specially appointed subcommittee presentation, analysis and discussion of data based on 11 years of boating accident statistics.
The widely debated issue was brought to the full National Boating Safety Advisory Council and a vote taken to pass on a Resolution to the Coast Guard for action which passed by a majority vote on 2 April 2011. The Board of Directors for the United States Power Squadrons has voted unanimously to endorse this resolution by conducting surveys, engaging with the public and lobbying Congress. This will include support to the U.S. Coast Guard Office of Boating Safety as appropriate with instituting draft legislation, public comment periods, passage of the bill and implementation. Following are some of the factors leading to the decision to support:
1. The Coast Guard through the grant program has funded many different outreach and educational programs, for at least the past 15 years, all aimed at getting boaters to wear life jackets.
2. Most states and territories have partnered with the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and the National Safe Boating Council (NSBC) to hold outreach programs emphasizing the need to wear life jackets while boating. Most notable was the recent “Wear It!” campaign conducted in several states.
3. Many advertisement from the National Marine Manufacturers Association now show people wearing life jackets.
4. For years the United States Power Squadrons training courses have emphasized the need for wearing life jackets, especially on small open boats. The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary training courses have also emphasized the wearing of life jackets.
5. Many other organization involved in recreational boating have also carried the message of the importance of wearing life jackets.
6. The U.S. Coast Guard contracted with JCI to survey life jacket wear in states with large numbers of registered boats, heavy numbers of accidents or both. The result during the last 11 years is that the wear rate for adult boaters in open boats has ranged between 5 percent and 6 percent.
7. Congress and the Office of Management and Budget are starting to pressure the Coast Guard to deliver better results for the money spent on promoting life jacket wear.
8. With millions of dollars in outreach, advertising and education having been spent with no measurable results in increased life jacket wear, the majority of the members of the National Boating Safety Advisory Council saw the need to seek out other means to achieve positive results.
9. In focusing on open boats under 18 feet, the NBSAC was told that it would cover approximately 83 percent of boaters at highest risk of unexpectedly entering the water without a life jacket and drowning.
10. During the past three years, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers worked on establishing mandatory life jacket wear policies on two lakes near the Mississippi River. One lake received signage, radio and television ads. The other lake received only minimal attention and enforcement. On the lake with heavy outreach the wear rate for life jackets exceeded 70 percent for the last two years. In the minds of many of the NBSAC members, the results bolster the case for mandatory life jacket wear.
11. The NBSAC Life Jacket Subcommittee will be reconvened to deal with issues including which types of boats and or activities would be exempted from the mandatory wear requirements such as sponsored events, races and regattas.
Thursday, April 07, 2011
If you think nothing changes in your boating area, think again. Each week, the Coast Guard issues hundreds of changes for your boating area via the Local Notice to Mariners bulletin, and these changes are all included in the C-MAP by Jeppesen 2011 chart library.
USPS members new to Club Jeppesen are eligible for a reduced membership fee of just $69 and a 25 percent discount on all products.
Club Jeppesen members are entitled to receive updated charts each year.
Visit Club Jeppesen or call 800-424-2627, option 1. Just identify yourself as a USPS member and have your membership number ready to start saving immediately.
The Spring 2011 chart library release includes new fishing information, more coverage areas and new detailed marina charts in addition to updated navigation chart data.
Wednesday, March 02, 2011
Piracy off the Coast of Somalia and Eastern Africa
WARNING TO: U.S. Registered Yachts and Sailing Vessels
The U.S. Coast Guard strongly advises against all operation of and travel by U.S. yachts and sailing craft, or by U.S. citizens on foreign-registered yachts and sailing craft, on the Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Somali Basin and the western parts of the Indian Ocean. A U.S.-registered sailing vessel was hijacked by pirates in February 2011 off the southern coast of Oman in the northern Arabian Sea and all of its crew were tragically killed. This case is a stark reminder of the grave dangers of operating in these high-risk waters, especially by recreational vessels.
All mariners already in these waters are urged to register with the Maritime Security Centre (Horn of Africa)
Piracy is a significant threat in the Gulf of Aden and the northwest Indian Ocean and has occurred in excess of 1000 nautical miles from the coast of Somalia. Up-to-date information about attacks and pirated vessels can be referenced from the EU Naval Force Somalia web site at http://www.eunavfor.eu
Participants in yacht races and rallies in these high-risk areas are at great risk of attack. These events are often publicized and could draw attention from pirates, despite the security and safety measures that might be put in place. The U.S. Coast Guard strongly advises mariners not to participate in events that will require transit through high-risk waters.
Requirements and amplifying guidance promulgated by the U.S. Coast Guard for commercial vessels intending to transit high-risk waters are unaffected by this advisory.
The UK Maritime Trade Organization (UKMTO)
Maritime Security Centre Horn of Africa (MSCHOA)
The NATO Shipping Centre (NSC)
The Maritime Liaison Office (MARLO)
The International Sailing Federation (ISAF)
Monday, February 21, 2011
At the BWI awards ceremony held during the Miami International Boat Show, Bree won third-place in the Boating Adventures category for “Escape From the Island of Doom” (The Ensign Winter 2010). The award includes a trophy and check.
The actual Island of Doom—Talbot Island—lies off Lake Superior’s Canadian north shore. The well-deserved site of Canada’s first Lake Superior lighthouse, the island got its name from the haunting tragedies that have befallen its light keepers and ships.
Sailing alone in his homebuilt wooden sailboat, Persistence, Bree encountered a storm rolling in off Superior’s open waters as he neared the island, and he soon came to realize firsthand the danger and power behind the legends.
The Ensign’s nonfiction article, which provides both a spellbinding adventure and a learning experience for mariners, was adapted from an original chapter in Bree’s nonfiction book, Wake of the Green Storm: A Survivor’s Tale.
Bree’s articles in The Ensign have won many awards for both the writer and United States Power Squadrons. He is the only writer in BWI history to have won the BWI Grand Prize twice—both for articles published in The Ensign.
You can read his story on page 18 of The Ensign’s Winter 2010 online issue.
Monday, February 14, 2011
Brunswick’s Dusty McCoy Receives NASBLA Award; Challenges United States Power Squadrons at USPS Annual Meeting
During his keynote address (listen to the speech) to the more than 700 delegates to the USPS annual meeting, McCoy challenged USPS members to reach out and attract new boaters. McCoy presented a compelling case (view the presentation) for such an effort, which he said only could be accomplished by an organization like USPS and its 45,000 members across the country. Boating, at its essence, is a social and family activity that is enjoyed by all ages. McCoy cited his own experience, when in his teens, a family friend asked him to go boating. From then on, he was hooked, and to this day, enjoys boating.
McCoy’s story underscored one of the main points of his presentation. He pointed to such acts of sharing and camaraderie as among the best ways to expand boating to attract new boaters, by allowing people to experience the joy of boating firsthand. In short, McCoy urged delegates to take someone aboard their boat the next time they are on the water; especially a youth, to plant the water seed at an early age.
Working together to build safe boating
In 2010, Brunswick launched a partnership with the USPS to conduct boater education through participating Brunswick boat brand dealerships across the United States. Such an effort was aimed at supporting the USPS and its more than 45,000 members to fulfill its charter of making boating safer and more enjoyable by conducting courses in seamanship, navigation and more.
Classes and seminars range from beginner to expert levels covering a wide variety of topics including navigation, “Rules of the Road,” knot tying, electronics, trailering and more. Qualified Power Squadrons personnel conduct the courses using facilities provided by participating Brunswick dealers.
Brunswick has long been in the forefront of supporting boater education. For example, Veronica Floyd, Brunswick’s legislative consultant, has played a major role in promoting and advancing efforts in this area by the National Safe Boating Council, with the U.S. Coast Guard, to promote the WEAR IT! campaign. This ongoing effort encourages all who participate in activities on the water to be safe and responsible. It includes wearing a life jacket, always being alert and aware while operating any type of vessel, taking an approved boater education course and being informed on what to do in case of an accident.
Further, Brunswick has advocated that adults and children should be educated about life jackets. Indeed, while Brunswick has long believed that adult boaters can best determine if their boating situation warrants the use of a life jacket, the company does back mandatory usage in certain situations. For example, Brunswick has supported state and federal mandates requiring children aged 12 and under to wear life jackets while on board and on deck a vessel that is underway. The company also supports mandated life jacket usage for those riding personal watercraft, due to the unique nature of that boating experience.
USPS Chief Commander Frank Dvorak indicated that such a partnership with
Brunswick is groundbreaking and positive for boating.
"We need to reach boaters at all levels and at every location where they boat," he said, "and where better to do that, than at a boat dealership? We value the USPS’ growing relationship with such a top-notch company. Dusty received a well-deserved standing ovation for his message, and we accept his challenge to do all we can to spread the word about safe boating and make sure that all on the water are well prepared and educated."
Headquartered in Lake Forest, Ill., Brunswick Corporation endeavors to instill "Genuine Ingenuity"(TM) in all its leading consumer brands, including Mercury and Mariner outboard engines; Mercury MerCruiser sterndrives and inboard engines; MotorGuide trolling motors; Attwood marine parts and accessories; Land 'N' Sea, Kellogg Marine, and Diversified Marine parts and accessories distributors; Arvor, Bayliner, Boston Whaler, Cabo Yachts, Crestliner, Cypress Cay, Harris FloteBote, Hatteras, Lowe, Lund, Meridian, Princecraft, Quicksilver, Rayglass, Sea Ray, Sealine, Suncruiser, Triton Aluminum, Trophy, Uttern and Valiant boats; Life Fitness and Hammer Strength fitness equipment; Brunswick bowling centers, equipment and consumer products; Brunswick billiards tables and foosball tables. For more information, visit http://www.brunswick.com.