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FishSafeWest.info

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Fish like there is a tomorrow - fish safe.

A web site for the Commercial Fishing Vessel Industry

Commercial fishing vessels that operate on the ocean, Great Lakes, or the Puget Sound beyond 3 miles from shore must get a mandatory exam.

Generate a checklist for your particular fishing vessel using our checklist generator and pass your exam on our first visit.

Quick links

Disrict 13 YouTube channel
Coast Guard Districts Map
GMDSS compliance date extended (this only applies to Commercial Fishing vessels greater than 300 Gross Tons)
FV DESTINATION Accident Investigation Report
Findings of Concern - "Impacts of Modifications, Alterations and Weight Creep on Stability"
Fishing Safety Training and Fishing Safety Research Grant programs
Link to the new Coast Guard Headquarters Fishing Vessel Safety Website www.dco.uscg.mil/fishsafe
Marine Safety Alert Oct. 6, 2017 - Vessel Stability - Remain upright by fully understanding vessel stability.
Voluntary Inititives and Good Marine Practices
Marine Safety Alert Aug. 17, 2016 - Coast Guard releases reminder to trawlers and other vessel that work the ocean floor about discarded munitions.
Marine Safety Alert Aug. 9, 2016 - Reminder about hazardous atmospheres in holds
Marine Safety Information Bulletin July 20, 2016 - Suspends development of Alternate Safety Complaince Program (ASCPs) for voluntary safety guidelines.
NOAA equipment in the Puget Sound and Straight of Juan de Fuca could cause gear entanglement.
Latest info on Engineers License Requirements
Asst Engineers extended deadline... again
New construction requirements
An end to 2182 kHz monitoring by the USCG
Surviving falls overboard
Fatigue is deadly - How to manage it.
Updated rules for pumping fuel as cargo (Processors)
Oil Spill Response Plans requirements vsls > 400GT

Marine Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB) 01-21 - Improving Fishing Vessel Stability

It has been three years since the release of USCG Marine Safety Alert (MSA) 11-17. Since then, additional commercial crab fishing vessels have sunk, resulting in losses of life due to stability related conditions. In addition to the information communicated in MSA 11-17, this bulletin is intended to be informational to assist mariners in identifying ways to improve their stability awareness.

(Click here to view MSIB )

 

News Release - ASTORIA, Ore. --- The Coast Guard issued a warning to mariners and commercial fisherman about the dangers and legal consequences of disabling a vessel's Automated Identification System (AIS).

This warning applies to commercial fishing vessels 65 feet and greater operating inside 12 nautical miles from shore. (Click here to view the news release)

 

Coast Guard releases an update of the Federal Requirements for Commercial Fishing Vessels pamphlet

(Click here to view the pamplet)

 

The U.S. Coast Guard is Seeking Information Related to the Accident of the F/V SCANDIES ROSE

The Marine Board of Investigation has released a flyer asking for information about the vessel (Click here to view the flyer)

The Coast Guard Releases Guidance on Improving Safety by Ensuring Vessels Maintain a Valid Decal.

A commercial fishing vessel that has an expired decal (2 years from issue date) and was ...

1) built before July 1, 2013,

2) are at least 50 feet overall in length, and

3) operate beyond 3 nautical miles from the baseline from which the territorial seas of the United States is measured or beyond 3 nautical miles from the coastline of the Great Lakes.

Are considered a High Risk Vessel. These vessels should get and maintain a valid decal. (Click here to read the guidance)

The 13th Coast Guard District in Seattle WA released a Marine Safety Information Bulletin on crossing hazardous bars in the Pacific Northwest.

Recent marine casualties highlight the challenges of attempting to cross the bars in the Pacific Northwest in heavy weather and at night. The marine casualty of a commercial fishing vessel on the Coos Bay bar resulted in loss of a vessel, but miraculously all three crewmembers were saved. Unfortunately, in a similar marine casualty on the Yaquina Bay bar, the crew was not as fortunate which resulted in the loss of all three members of the crew and the vessel. (Click here)

Coast Guard releases the latest guidance (work instruction) for 3rd party organizations authorized to conduct commercial fishing vessel safety examination.

This work instruction (WI) clarifies and consolidates existing Coast Guard Commercial Fishing Vessel Safety (CFVS) Program requirements related to dockside safety examinations and Third Parties that conduct such examinations. (Click here)

 

The FCC has released an Enforcement Advisory to users and sellers of Automatic Identification System (AIS) for fishing gear.

Anyone advertising or selling noncompliant AIS for fishing net buoys or other noncompliant AIS devices should stop immediately, and anyone owning such devices should not use them. Sellers, advertisers, and operators of noncompliant AIS equipment may be subject to substantial monetary penalties. ... See FCC Enforcement Advisory

Oily bilge water management - The practice of decanting / skimming is prohibited.

Decanting or skimming is the practice of pumping bilge water from below any perceived oil or sheen on the bilge water's surface. This bulletin describes the law of both the Clean Water Act and the Act to Prevent Pollution from ships (APPS). MSIB 03-18.

 

Falling overboard is the 2nd leading cause of death among commercial fishermen.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) released a video telling the story of Stan, an Oregon Dungeness crab fishermen, who fell overboard and survived, crediting his survival to the life jacket he was wearing. https://www.cdc.gov/niosh//docs/video/2018-107d/...

KIDDE FIRE EXTINGUISHER WITH PLASTIC HANDLE, RECALL - Enforcement, examination, and inspection procedures..

The US Coast Guard distributed internal guidance for enforcement, examination, and inspection procedures for the Kidde fire extinguisher recall. Read guidance...

 

Fatigue - it'll bite you.

The Washington State, Department of Ecology has just released their website on the dangers of fatigue and commercial fishing vessel operations.

Listen to a real story of how fatigue cost a commercial fishermen his boat and nearly his life, and get tips for reducing fatigue and helping prevent oil spills.

Fire Extinguisher recall.

This marine safety alert provides information related to Kidde brand fire extinguishers. Nearly 40 Million extinguishers involving 134 different models have been recalled. These fire extinguishers were manufactured between January 1, 1973 and August 15, 2017, including models that were previously recalled in March 2009 and February 2015. The extinguishers were sold in red, white, and silver cylinder colors and are rated as either ABC or B.

Fishing Vessels chartered by the NMFS as an oceanographic research vessel.

There has been a lot of concern that the Coast Guard is changing the rules for fishing vessels chartered to do research work. The official word from our headquarter office is that there is no change. Read more...

2016 new requirement for VHF Radios with Direct Selective Calling (DSC)


By January 20th 2016, all commercial fishing vessels 300GT and greater must replace existing VHF radios with VHF radios with (DSC) capability. View Public Notice.

Vessel operating only in Alaska waters are exempt from this requirement (see the Public Notice to learn more about this requirement)

The DSC radio must be programmed with the Maritime Mobile Service Identity (MMSI) number and vessel information. When connected to a GPS these new radios can send the vessels location automatically. Vessels that are not required to have a GPS are not mandated to have one in order to make that feature on the radio functional. Many vessels do have a GPS or plotting system and it is recommended that the proper connection to the DSC be made if possible.

When is my vessel a commercial fishing vessel?

Whether your vessel is US documented or state registered, if you catch fish with the intent to sell your catch, you are operating a commecial fishing vessel. Commercial fishing vessels are required to comply with the commercial fishing vessel safety regulations. These requirments are different from those for a recreational vessel. Documented (not state registered) vessels must have documentation paperwork that has a "Fisheries endorsement".

Click here to visit the Dockside Examinations page and use the "Checklist Generator" to obtain a checklist for your particular vessel and operations.