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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation M-05-010
Details
Synopsis: On June 14, 2003, the small passenger vessel Taki-Tooo, a U.S. charter fishing vessel with 2 crewmen and 17 passengers on board, was en route from Garibaldi, Oregon, to the Pacific Ocean for a day of fishing. A small craft advisory was in effect for the northern Oregon and southern Washington coasts, and personnel at U.S. Coast Guard Station Tillamook Bay, after assessing the hazardous conditions at the inlet, had activated the rough bar warning signs, restricting any transit attempts across the bar by recreational boats and uninspected passenger vessels. The restriction, however, did not apply to inspected small passenger vessels such as charter boats like the Taki-Tooo.
Recommendation: TO THE U.S. COAST GUARD: Revise your regulations to require that small passenger vessels operating in Coast Guard-designated surf stations and regulated boating areas on the West Coast have all passengers and crew wear lifejackets while the vessels transit inlets where rough bar warnings are in effect.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Marine
Location: Pacific Ocean, OR, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA03MM035
Accident Reports:
Capsizing of U.S. Small Passenger Vessel Taki-Tooo
Report #: MAR-05-02
Accident Date: 6/14/2003
Issue Date: 7/21/2005
Date Closed: 2/24/2010
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: USCG (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: USCG
Date: 2/24/2010
Response: NMC# 103378: The NTSB has reviewed the final rule published at 74 Federal Register 59098 on November 17, 2009, establishing regulated navigation areas (RNA) for bars along the coasts of Oregon and Washington under 33 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 165. The NTSB is pleased that the final rule, which became effective on December 17, 2009, requires owners and operators of small passenger vessels that cross bars and inlets in regulated boating areas and Coast Guard designated Washington and Oregon coast ports with rough bars to develop and implement written go/no-go policies. The final rule further requires that the master or operator of any small passenger vessel ensure that all persons located in any unenclosed areas of the vessel are wearing lifejackets and that lifejackets are immediately available for/to all persons located in any enclosed areas of the vessel: (a) when crossing the bar and a bar restriction exists for recreational vessels or uninspected passenger vessels of the same length or (b) whenever their vessel is being towed or escorted across the bar by the Coast Guard. An exemption exists for small passenger vessels with a bar crossing plan reviewed and accepted by the Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection, from the safety requirements so long as the master or operator ensures that all persons on the vessel wear lifejackets in accordance with the bar crossing plan. If the vessel’s bar crossing plan does not specify when the persons on the vessel must wear lifejackets, however, then the master or operator must comply with the safety requirements provided in the RNA regulations. The NTSB further notes that the Coast Guard has established channel 22A VHF radio as the checking-in frequency (as opposed to channel 16 VHF) for vessels operating in these areas. The final rule fully satisfies Safety Recommendations M-05-9 and -10; accordingly, these recommendations are classified Closed Acceptable Action.

From: NTSB
To: USCG
Date: 6/26/2009
Response: The NTSB notes that the February 2009 NPRM proposes regulations for the RNAs, requiring that the master or operator of any small passenger vessel ensure that all persons located in any unenclosed areas of the vessel wear lifejackets and that lifejackets are immediately available for/to all persons located in any enclosed areas of the vessel (a) when crossing the bar during a bar restriction for recreational vessels or uninspected passenger vessels of the same length as the small passenger vessel or (b) whenever their vessel is being towed or escorted across the bar by the Coast Guard. The NTSB further notes that the NPRM proposes exempting from the safety requirements any small passenger vessel with a bar-crossing plan reviewed and accepted by the Officer-in-Charge, Marine Inspection, so long as the master or operator ensures that all persons on the vessel wear lifejackets in accordance with the operator’s bar-crossing plan. If the vessel’s bar-crossing plan does not specify when persons on the vessel must wear lifejackets, however, then the master or operator must comply with the safety requirements provided in the proposed RNA regulations. Because this requirement, when final, will satisfy the recommendation, Safety Recommendation M-05-10 is classified Open Acceptable Response.

From: USCG
To: NTSB
Date: 2/17/2009
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 2/20/2009 11:16:05 AM MC# 2090085 - From Walter D. Rabe, United States Coast Guard: In a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) (74 FK 7022) published on February 12, 2009, we propose Regulated Navigation Areas (RNA) for bars along the Coasts of Oregon and Washington under 33 CFR Part 165. The NPRM proposes regulations for the KNAs requiring that thc master or operator of any small passenger vessel ensure that all persons located in any unenclosed areas of the vessel are wearing lifejackets and that lifejackets are immediately available for/to all persons located in any enclosed areas of the vessel: (a) when crossing thc bar and a bar restriction exists for recreational vessels or uninspected passenger vessels of the same lcngth or (b) whenever their vessel is being towed or escorted across the bar by the Coast Guard. It also proposes exempting any small passenger vessel with a bar crossing plan reviewed and accepted by the Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection, (OCMI) from the safety requirements so long as the master or operator ensures that all persons on their vcssel wear lifejackcts in accordance with their bar crossing plan. If the vessel’s bar crossing plan does not specify when the persons on their vessel must wear lifejackets, however, then the master or operator must comply with the safety requirements provided in the proposed RNA regulations. We will keep the Board informed of our progress on this recommendation.

From: NTSB
To: USCG
Date: 2/15/2006
Response: The Safety Board remains concerned with the issue of passengers and crew donning personal flotation devices (PFDs) when crossing hazardous bars, given the September 19, 2005, sinking of the uninspected small passenger vessel Sydney Mae II while attempting to cross the Umpqua River Bar near Florence, Oregon, where three passengers, not wearing PFDs, drowned. While the Coast Guard has not committed to revising 46 CFR 185.508 to include such a mandate, it has acknowledged the shortcomings of the present regulations and has initiated an industry working group to study the matter. The Coast Guard will develop policy and guidance based on risk-management principles to clarify how to determine when conditions warrant the wearing of lifejackets on small passenger vessels. Further, the Coast Guard has informed the Board that resulting policy will be considered, in conjunction with the development of go/no-go policy requirements, in determining whether, and to what extent, revisions to 46 CFR Subchapter T are necessary to improve safety on small passenger vessels. The Safety Board reminds the Coast Guard to consider the shortcomings of the present regulations and the numerous deaths that have occurred when it is left up to the master's discretion whether to require passengers to wear PFDs when vessels are crossing hazardous bars. Pending receipt of further information from the Coast Guard on its efforts to revise the current regulations as requested, Safety Recommendation M-05-10 is classified OPEN -- ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: USCG
To: NTSB
Date: 10/17/2005
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 10/19/2005 9:19:54 AM MC# 2050487 10-17-05 - From T.H. Gilmour, Rear Admiral, Assistant Commandant for Marine Safety, Security and Environmental Protection: We concur with the intent of this recommendation. We acknowledge the need to ensure that Masters of small passenger vessels comply with the requirements currently in 46 CFR 185.508, specifically that they require passengers to don lifejackets when possible hazardous conditions exist, including, but not limited to transiting hazardous bars and inlets. We are engaged through our partnerships with representatives from the passenger vessel industry in a Natural Working Group (NWG) to develop policy and guidance, based on risk management principles, to clarify how to determine when conditions warrant the wearing of lifejackets on small passenger vessels. Industry representation in this NWG includes the Passenger Vessel Association, the Sportfishing Association of California, the National Association of Charterboat Operators, the National Party Boat Owners and the National Marine Charter Association. The resulting policy will be considered, in conjunction with the development of go/no-go policy requirements, in determining if, and to what extent, revisions to 46 CFR Subchapter T are necessary to improve safety on small passenger vessels through compliance with 46 CFR 185.508. We will keep the Board informed of our progress on this recommendation.