Skip to main content

USCG/NMFS : No decal means no observer. No observer means no fishing. (halibut and sablefish)


March 19, 2013
District 17 Public Affairs Detachment Kodiak

Coast Guard encourages fishing vessel safety examinations for the 2013 halibut and sablefish fisheries in Alaska

JUNEAU, Alaska — The Coast Guard is encouraging fishermen to get their commercial fishing vessel safety exams in advance of the upcoming halibut and sablefish fisheries in Alaska.

Mariners can improve their preparedness by getting a free commercial fishing vessel safety exam to ensure they are in compliance with current regulations before the fisheries open on Saturday.

“The Coast Guard strongly encourages fishing vessel owners to complete an exam and get their decal,” said Ken Lawrenson, the Coast Guard 17th District commercial fishing vessel safety coordinator.  “Some vessels, including halibut individual fishing quota fishermen, are now required by the National Marine Fisheries Service to have a valid decal prior to carrying a mandatory observer aboard.  No decal means no observer. No observer means no fishing.”

In October, it was stated that fishermen operating beyond three nautical miles of the territorial sea baseline were required to have certified Coast Guard safety examinations prior to the start of their respective fishing seasons. This latest round of amendments to the act however, delayed implementation of these mandatory examinations until 2015.

Lawrenson explained that even though these Coast Guard examinations are not yet implemented, it is strongly encouraged that fishermen still get their vessels examined prior to the 2015 cutoff date.

“The Coast Guard strongly encourages fishing vessel owners to complete an exam and get their decal,” said Lawrenson.  “Some vessels, including halibut individual fishing quota fishermen, are now required by the National Marine Fisheries Service to have a valid decal prior to carrying a mandatory observer aboard.  No decal means no observer. No observer means no fishing.”

Lawrenson stated that fortunately, most of the fishing industry is aware of these requirements.

“We are anecdotally seeing the pools of observed vessels having 80 percent or higher decal compliance,” Lawrenson said.  “As always in Alaska, the difficulty in delivering services, such as dockside exams, is distance and accessibility. We are strongly encouraging vessels in remote areas to get their decals at the first opportunity, because there may not be access to an examiner if folks wait to the last minute, especially in these times of budget restrictions.”

Fishermen are also encouraged to visit fishsafe.info and click the link to the checklist generator. This application takes input on the fishing vessel, such as length, persons aboard, where it operates, etc., and generates a list of requirements that apply to that specific fishing vessel. This allows owners to know exactly what the Coast Guard dockside examiner is going to look at before their official examination.

“The whole idea is to minimize the number of visits to a fishing vessel in order to get them into compliance,” said Lawrenson.

For more specific information on the Coast Guard and Marine Transportation Act of 2012 visit: www.fishsafe.info.

To contact local examiners in your area contact:

Juneau: Mr. Scott Wilwert – 907-463-2248
Sitka: Mr. Steven Ramp – 907-966-5620
Ketchikan: Mr. Jim Paul – 907-225-4496 Ext. 233
Valdez: Chief Machinery Technician Steven Blythe – 907-835-7225
Anchorage: Chief Boatswain’s Mate Jon-Michael Jones – 907-271-1954
Kodiak: Petty Officer 2nd Class Aaron Jessup – 907-486-5918
Dutch Harbor:  Lt. Jim Fothergill – 907-581-3466
Homer/Kenai: Lt. Sarah Geoffrion – 907-235-3292

Popular posts from this blog

Crabbers get a boost in bairdi Tanner quotas

LAINE WELCH Image via Wikipedia FISHERIES Published: November 7th, 2009 10:10 PM Last Modified: November 7th, 2009 10:12 PM KODIAK -- Kodiak and Alaska Peninsula crabbers got some good news last week -- bigger catch quotas for bairdi Tanner crab, a mid-January fishery important to local economies. Bairdi are the larger cousins of the better-known opilio Tanners, or snow crab. The bairdi boost stems from a big pulse of new crab recruits that biologists have been tracking for years. "That is what's fueling the increase in the harvest this year. We're just getting the very beginning of that year class," said......... http://www.adn.com/money/welch/story/1004091.html

#01-14-2014 - ComFish News Roundup

Chinook Conservation, Trawling and Permit-Stacking Addressed by BoF Jan 13, 2014 View of Kodiak from Pillar Mountain (Photo credit: Wikipedia ) Jay Barrett/KMXT The Alaska Board of Fisheries wrapped up its Kodiak area meetings on Friday afternoon at the Harbor Convention Center. KMXT’s Jay Barrett spoke with board Chairman Karl Johnstone about some of the decisions that came out of the meeting, and how the meeting schedule may change in the future..... http://www.kmxt.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=5374 3:32 PM MON JANUARY 13, 2014 The Dillingham City Council Opposes Passage of House Bill 77 By MIKE MASON The Dillingham City Council has come out in opposition to a bill that is expected to be a major focus of attention during the next session of the Alaska Legislature. KDLG’s Mike Mason has the details..... http://kdlg.org/post/dillingham-city-council-opposes-passage-house-bill-77 PORT STUDY Corps draft feasibility study on ports due in March

Danish commandos 'monitoring hippies' on Arctic offshore rig #artcticloons

Image by Steve Rhodes via Flickr Alaska Dispatch | May 31, 2011 Armed Danish commandos have (possibly) been summoned to monitor Earth-loving "hippies" clinging to the underbelly of an Arctic deepwater oil rig  off the coast of Greenland , sources say. The environmental non-governmental group  Greenpeace  has published  statements and  video  showing its activists aboard two ships that are attempting to "interfere" with oil exploration going on in the Davis Strait, 100 miles west of Greenland. This business has in turn prompted the Kingdom of Denmark to launch two ships and a few helicopters to monitor the Greenpeace interference. The  Leiv Eriksson  is the source of all this Arctic bait and switch. British oil company  Cairn Energy  is attempting to drill four wells at depths of at least 5,000 feet this summer in "iceberg-strewn sea" with the 53,000-ton offshore oil rig, which has made its way to Arctic waters after a month of failed attempts by Green