TITLE 46—SHIPPING

This title was enacted by Pub. L. 98–89, §1, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 500; Pub. L. 99–509, title V, subtitle B, §5101, Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1913; Pub. L. 100–424, §6, Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1591; and Pub. L. 100–710, Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4735

Subtitle
Sec.
I.
GENERAL
101
II.
VESSELS AND SEAMEN
2101
III.
MARITIME LIABILITY
30101
 
[BALANCE OF TITLE RESERVED]

        

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–710, title I, §102(b), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4738, amended title analysis generally, substituting “GENERAL” for “[Reserved—general]” in item I and adding item III.

Table Showing Disposition of All Sections of Former Title 46
[Former sections of Title 46 that are not included in Title 46, Shipping, as enacted by Pub. L. 98–89, subtitle B of title V of Pub. L. 99–509, section 6 of Pub. L. 100–424, and Pub. L. 100–710 are set out in the Appendix to Title 46 and retain the same section numbers.]
Title 46

Former Sections

Title 46

New Sections

1 Rep.
2 2103
3 Rep.
4 2105
5, 6 Rep.
7 2107
8 2108
9 (less (c)) 3316
9(c) 46 App.
11, 12 Rep.
13, 14 46 App.
15–41 Rep.
42 46 App.
43–56 Rep.
57 46 App.
58 Rep.
59 46 App.
60–63 Rep.
65(1) 2101(10)
65(2) 2101(11)
65(3) 2101(34)
65a 12113
65b 12102
65c 12114
65d 12115
65e 12103
65f 12116
65g 12104
65h 12105
65i 12106
65j 12107
65k 12108
65l 12109
65m 12110
65n 12122
65o 12111
65p 12112
65q 12117
65r 12118
65s 12119
65t 12120
65u 2107, 12122(a)
65v(1) 2104
65v(2) 12121
65w 12101
71 12102, 14102, 14104, 14501, 14502, 14504, 14511, 14521, 14522
72 14503
73, 74 Rep.
75 14512
76 Rep.
77 14502, 14512
78, 79 Rep.
80 (See former 660–1)
81 14306
82 3101
83 14502, 14513
83a–83g 14513
83h 14102
83i 14702
83j 14701
83k 2107
85–85g Rep.
86 5114, 5115
86a 5101
86b 5102
86c 5102, 5103, 5104, 5106
86d 5107
86e 5108
86f 5109
86g 5112
86h 5113
86i 5116
88 5102
88a 5104, 5108
88b 5103, 5107
88c 5112
88d 5109
88e 5112
88f 5113
88g 5116
88h, 88i Rep.
91 46 App.
91a–96 Rep.
97, 98 46 App.
99 Rep.
100 46 App.
101, 102 Rep.
103 Rep.
104 46 App.
105–110 Rep.
111 46 App.
112, 113 Rep.
121–125 46 App.
126, 127 Rep.
128, 129 46 App.
130, 131 Rep.
132–135 46 App.
141–146 46 App.
151–162 Rep.
163 46 App.
170 3306(a)(5), Rep. in part
170(14) 2106
170a, 170b Rep.
171–175 Rep.
178, 179 Rep.
181–183 46 App.
183a Rep.
183b–196 46 App.
201 11301
202 11302
203 11303
211 8501(a)
212 8501(b)
213 8501(c), (e)
214 7101
214(c) 7106
215 8501(d), 8502
216(a) 9301(2)
216(b) 2101(34)
216(c) 9301(3)
216(d) 9301(1)
216(e), (f) Rep.
216a 9302(a), (b), (d)
216b(a)–(c) 9303
216b(d) 9305
216b(e) 9304
216c 9303
216d 9305
216e(a)–(c) 9308
216e(d) 2107
216e(e) 2106
216f 9302(c)
216g 9306
216h 9307
216i Rep.
221 8103
222 8101
223 8301
224 7101, 8101
224a 8303, 8304
224a(2) 7111
225 7106, 7109, 7113
226 7101, 7106, 7703
227 Rep.
228 7101, 7106, 7703
229 7101, 7106, 7703
229a 7101, 7103
229b 7101, 7103
229c 7106, 7108, 7318
229d Rep.
229e 7105
229f 7110
229g 7103, 7318
229h Rep.
230 7112
231 7105
232 7110
233 7109
234 3315
235 8104
236 8103
237, 238 Rep.
239 6101, 6301, 7703
239(d) 6303
239(e) 6304, 7705
239(f) 6304
239(g) 6305, 7701
239(i) 6306
239(j) 6301, 6307
239(k) 6305
239a(a) 7503(a), 7704(a)
239a(b) 2101(34)
239a(c) 7302
239b(a) 7503(b)
239b(b) 7704(b), (c)
240 7703
241 8304
242 7101, 7102, 8302(a)–(d)
243 7101, 7104, 7107, 7108
244 7101, 7105
245 8302(g), (h)
246(a) 8302(a)–(d)
246(b) Rep.
246(c) 7703
247 7101
248 8302
249–249c Rep.
251–251b 46 App.
252–261 Rep.
262 46 App.
263–276 Rep.
277 46 App.
278–288 Rep.
289–292 46 App.
293–293b Rep.
294–315 Rep.
316 46 App.
317, 318 Rep.
319–324 46 App.
325 Rep.
326–328 46 App.
329, 330 Rep.
331 2110
332–335 Rep.
336 46 App.
351–353 Rep.
354, 355 46 App.
361 2101(16), (37)
362 2109, 3301(9), 3314
362(a) 3303
362(b) 3504
362(c) 3505
363 2109
364 8502
365 Rep.
366 3306
367 2101(16), (33), 2303, 3301(7), 3302
369 3305, 3306, 3316
369(b) 3503
369(e) 3318
371 Rep.
372 2103
373–374a Rep.
375 3306
376–382a–1 Rep.
382b 2104, 2111, 2112
382b–1 3317(b)
382c–385 Rep.
390 3302, 3304
390(a) 2101(21)(B)
390(b) 2101(35)
390(d) 2101(34)
390(e) 2101(13)
390(f) 2101(27)
390(g) 2101(30)
390(h) 2101(28)
390(i) 2101(29)
390a 3301(4), (5), (8), 3305
390a(a) 3307(2)
390a(b) 3317(a), 7114
390b 3306, 8901, 8902
390c 3303(a), 3309, 3311
390c(b), (c) 3313
390d 2106, 3318(a), 8906
390e–390g Rep.
391 3301(1), (4), (9), 3304, 3305
391(b) 3307(3)
391(c) 2101(22), 3307(1)
391(e) 3302
391a 3301(10), 3702, 8502
391a(2)(A) 2101(9)
391a(2)(B) 2101(12)
391a(2)(C) 2101(14)
391a(2)(D) 2101(15)
391a(2)(E) 2101(20)
391a(2)(F) 3701(4)
391a(2)(G) 2101(24)
391a(2)(H) 2101(5)
391a(2)(I) 2101(34)
391a(2)(J) 3701(5)
391a(2)(K) 3701(6)
391a(2)(L) 2101(46)
391a(2)(M) 2101(38)
391a(2)(N) 2101(8)
391a(2)(O) 2101(23)
391a(2)(P) 3701(2)
391a(2)(Q) 3701(3)
391a(2)(R) 3701(1)
391a(2)(S) 2101(7)
391a(3) 2101(39), 2301, 3303, 3702(a)
391a(4) 2109
391a(4)(B) 8703(c)
391a(5) 3702
391a(6) 3703
391a(7) 3704–3709
391a(8) 3309, 3313
391a(8)(A) 3710, 3712
391a(8)(B) 3711, 3712
391a(8)(C) 3711
391a(8)(D) 3710
391a(8)(E) 3710, 3711
391a(9) 9102
391a(10)(A) 8703(a)
391a(10)(B) 9101(b)
391a(10)(C) 7317, 8703(b)
391a(10)(D) Rep. See 7701 et seq.
391a(11) 9101(a)
391a(12) 3703
391a(13) 3713
391a(14) 2107, 3718
391a(14)(C) 2106
391a(15) 3714
391a(16) 3717
391a(17) 3715
391a(18) 3716
391b Rep.
392 3304–3306
392(b) 3307(3)
393, 394 Rep.
395 3301(6), 3305, 3311
395(d) 3309
395(e) 2101(32)
396, 397 Rep.
398 3318
399 3309, 3311, 3314
400 3312
401, 402 Rep.
403 3318
404 2101(13), (16), (17), 3301(1), 3302, 3306, 3307
404–1 3301(3), 3305, 3501
404–1(1) 2101(19)
404–1(4) 2101(21)(C)
404–1(6) 3307(2), (3)
404–1(8) 8301
404a Rep.
405 2101(40), 3301(9), 3305
405(b) 8104
405(b)(1)(A) 2101(34)
405(b)(2) 8904
405(b)(3) 8905(b)
406 3305
407 3305, 3318
408 3305, 3306, 3318
409 Rep.
410 3318
411, 412 3306
413 3318
414 3310, 7502
415 Rep.
416 2104, 3306
417 (See former 416)
418, 419 Rep.
420 3302, 3306
431–434 Rep.
435 3308, 3313
436 2106, 3318
437–440 Rep.
441 46 App.
441(1) 2101(18)
441(2) 2101(31)
442 3302
443 46 App.
444 8701
444 46 App.
445 2113, 3306
446–446c 46 App.
446d 8101
451 3501
452 3501(b), (c)
453 2113
454–457 T. 33 §§1233–1236
458 Rep.
459 3306
460, 460a, 461 3502
462 2106, 3501, 3502
463, 463a, 464 Rep.
465 (See former 170)
466 Rep.
466a 3901
466b 3902
467–469 Rep.
470, 471 8102
472 Rep.
473 3306
474–476 Rep.
477–479 3306
480 2301
481 2106, 3306
481(a) 2101(34)
481(c) 2106
481(d) 3318
482, 483 3306
484–488 Rep.
489 3306
490 Rep.
491 46 App.
492 3506
493–496 Rep.
497 2106, 3318, 8502
498 Rep.
511–522 Rep.
526 2101(43)
526a–526d Rep.
526e 4102(b)
526f Rep.
526g 4102(a)
526h 4103
526i 4102(c)
526j 4102(d)
526k–526n Rep.
526o 2106, 2107, 4106
526p 2107, 3306, 4104
526q–526t Rep.
526u 4101
527–527h Rep.
531 10601
532 Rep. See 11501
533, 534 10602
541–542a Rep.
543 2104
544, 545 Rep.
546 10102
547–549 Rep.
561, 562 Rep.
563 11110
564 10301, 10302
565 10305
566 10301
567, 568 10321
569 10309
570 10308
571 10321
572, 573 Rep.
574 10301, 10501, 10502
575 10508
576 10509
577 10307
578 11107
579 Rep.
591 10313(a)
592 10313(b)
593 10313(b)
594 10313(c)
595 10313(d)
596 10313(e)–(i), 10504
597 2101(12), 10313(e)–(i), 10504
598 10313(e), 10504(a), (d), 10505(d)
599 2101(12), 10314, 10315, 10505, 10506
599(g) 10316
600 10317
601 11108, 11109
602 11111
603–608, 611 Rep.
621 10701, 10702
622 10703
623 10711
624 10704, 10705
625 10706
626 10707
627 10709
628 10708, 10710
641, 642 10310
643 8701, 8702, 10102(c), 10311, 10503
643(a) 7302, 7303, 7318
643(b) 7304
643(c) 7302, 10306
643(e) 10311
643(f) 7319, 7502
643(h) 7501
643(l) 7316, 10103
643a 8701
643b Rep.
644 10312(a), (b), (d)–(f)
645, 646, 651 Rep.
652 10312(c)
653 10901, 10902(a), 10907
654 10901, 10903(a), (b)
655 10901, 10904
656 10901, 10905
657 10905
658 10901, 10906, 10908
659 10903(c)
660 10903(d)
660–1 11101
660a 3305, 3308
660b 3308
661 10321
662 10902(b)
663 Rep.
664 10907
665 10321, 11106(b)–(d)
666 11102(a)
667 11102(b)
668, 669 Rep.
670, 671 11103
672 8701, 8702
672(a) 2101(34)
672(b) 7306
672(b)(1) 7307
672(b)(2) 7308
672(b)(3) 7309, 7310
672(b)(4) 7311
672(c) 7301, 7315
672(d) 8702(d)
672(e) 8702(b), (c)
672(f) 7312
672(g) 7313, 7314
672(h) 8103
672(i) 7302
672(j) 2106, 8702(e)
672–1, 672–2 Rep.
672a 8103
672b, 672b–1, 672c Rep.
673 8104
674–677 Rep.
678 11104(a)
679 11104(b)–(d)
680, 681 Rep.
682 10318, 10507
683 10318, 10507
684 11105
685 11106(a)
686, 687 Rep.
688 46 App.
689 2103, 2104
690 8103
691 Sec. 2(f) of Pub. L. 98–89
692 Rep.
701 11501
702 11502
703 11503
704 T. 18 §2196
705 11504
706 11505
707 10319
708 T. 18 §2279
709 Rep.
710 11506
710a Rep.
710b (See former 239a)
710c (See former 239b)
711 Rep.
712 11507
713 10101, 10303, 10304
721–727 46 App.
728 2304
729–731 46 App.
732–735 Rep.
738, 738a 46 App.
738b Rep.
738c 46 App.
738d Rep.
740–752 46 App.
761, 762 46 App.
763 Rep.
763a–768 46 App.
781–790 46 App.
791–799 Rep.
801–803 46 App.
804 Rep.
804a 46 App.
805–807 Rep.
808 46 App.
808(4th par.) 31328
809–810a Rep.
811 46 App.
812–817c Rep.
817d, 817e 46 App.
818–832 Rep.
833 46 App.
833a Rep.
834–837 46 App.
838 31306
839 46 App.
840–841c Rep.
842 46 App.
843–848 Rep.
861 46 App.
862–864 Rep.
864, 864b 46 App.
865–869 46 App.
870–870d Rep.
871, 872 46 App.
873, 874 Rep.
875–877 46 App.
878–880 Rep.
881 3305, 3316, 12119
882 3304
883–885 46 App.
886 Rep.
887–889 46 App.
891 46 App.
891a Rep.
891b, 891c 46 App.
891d–891r Rep.
891s, 891t Rep.
891u–891x 46 App.
891y Rep.
911(1), (2) 30101(1)
911(3) Rep.
911(4) 30101(1)
911(5) 31301(3)
921 31321(a)(1), (e)
922(a), (b) 31322(a)(1)
922(b) 31301(6)(A)
922(c), (d) Rep.
922(e), (f) 31322(c)
923 31324
924 31323(a), (b)
925 31343
925(b) 31321(f), (h)
926(a), (b) 31321(b)
926(c) Rep.
926(d) 31322(b)
927 31302(1), (2)
941(a) Rep.
941(b) (1st sentence) 31330(a), (c)
941(b) (last sentence) 31323(c)
941(c) 31304
951 (1st par.) 31325(a), (b)(1), (c), (d)
951 (2d par. less proviso) 31301(6)(B)
951 (2d par. proviso) 31326(b)(2)
952 (1st, 2d sentences) 31325(e)
952 (last sentence) 31308
953(a) 31301(5)
953(b) 31326(a), (b)(1)
954(a) 31325(b)(2)
954(b) 31303
961(a) Rep.
961(b) 31327
961(c) 31326(a)
961(d), (e) 31328
961(f) 31329
971 31342
972 31341
973 31341(a)
974 31305
975 31307
981–984 Rep.
1011 Rep.
1012 31321(a)(2)
1013, 1014 Rep.
1101 46 App.
1111–1111a 46 App.
1111b, 1111c Rep.
1112 46 App.
1113 Rep.
1114–1119 46 App.
1119a, 1119b Rep.
1120–1125a 46 App.
1126 Rep.
1126–1 46 App.
1126a, 1126a–1 Rep.
1126b, 1126b–1 Rep.
1126c, 1126d Rep.
1127–1128h Rep.
1131 46 App.
1132 8103
1132(a) 7102
1132(g) 8302
1141–1144 Rep.
1145 Rep.
1151–1155 46 App.
1155a Rep.
1156–1161 46 App.
1171–1181 46 App.
1182 Rep.
1183–1185 46 App.
1191–1205 46 App.
1206 Rep.
1211–1213 46 App.
1214 Rep.
1221 Rep.
1222, 1223 46 App.
1224, 1225 Rep.
1226–1228 46 App.
1241–1242 46 App.
1242–1 Rep.
1242a 46 App.
1243 Rep.
1244, 1245 46 App.
1246 Rep.
1247, 1248 46 App.
1251–1262 Rep.
1271–1275 46 App.
1276–1279 Rep.
1279a 46 App.
1279b Rep.
1279c–1295e 46 App.
1295f(a), (b) 46 App.
1295f(c) 2101(17), 3301(2), 3306, 3307(1)
1295f(d)(1) 46 App.
1295f(d)(2), (3) 3318(g)
1295g(a)–(d) 46 App.
1295g(e)(1) 2101(17)
1295g(e)(2)–(5) Rep.
1300–1315 46 App.
1331–1341 Rep.
1351–1364 Rep.
1381–1388 Rep.
1401–1413 Rep.
1451 Rep.
1452(1)(A), (B) 2101(25)
1452(1)(C) 2101(42)
1452(2) 2101(45)
1452(3) 2101(41)
1452(5) 2101(21)(D)
1452(7) 2101(26)
1452(8) 2101(1)
1452(9) 2101(34)
1452(10) 2102(2)
1452(11) 2102(1)
1452(12) 2102(4)
1452(13) 2102(5)
1452(14) 2102(3)
1453 4105, 4301
1454, 1455 4302
1456 4302(a)(3)
1457 4303
1458 4305
1459 4306
1460 4304, 4306
1461(a) 4307(a)
1461(b) 4311(f)
1461(c) 4307(b)
1461(d) 2302(a), (b)
1461(e) 8903
1461(f) 8903, 8905(a)
1462 4308
1463 4309
1464 4310
1464(g) 4302
1465 2303
1466 12301
1467 12302
1468 12303
1469 12304
1470 12305
1471 12306
1472 12307
1473 12308
1474 13101
1475 13102
1476 13103
1477 13104
1478 13105
1479 13106
1479a 13107
1480 13108
1481 13109
1482 13110
1483 2302(b), 4311(a), 12309(a)
1484(a) 4311(b)
1484(b) 2106, 2302(a), (c), 4311(c), 12309(b)
1484(c) 2107
1484(d) 4311(d), 12309(c)
1485 2305, 4311(e)
1486 6101, 6102
1487 Rep.
1488 4302
1489 4311(g)
1501–1507 46 App.
1508 Rep.
1601–1605 46 App.
1606 Rep.
1607–1610 46 App.
1707a Rep.
1717 Rep.
1720 Rep.
1721 Rep.

Enacting Clauses

Pub. L. 100–710, title I, §102(a), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4738, provided that: “Certain general and permanent laws of the United States, related to definitions and maritime commercial instruments and liens, are revised, consolidated, and enacted by paragraph (3) of this subsection [probably means subsection (c) of this section] as subtitle III of title 46, United States Code, ‘Shipping’.”

Section 1 of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 500, provided in part that: “Certain general and permanent laws of the United States, related to vessels and seamen, are revised, consolidated, and enacted as title 46, United States Code, ‘Shipping’ ”.

Construction

Section 105 of Pub. L. 100–710, title I, Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4751, provided that:

“(a) A reference to a law replaced by section 102 of this Act, including a reference in a regulation, order, or other law, is deemed to refer to the corresponding provision of this Act.

“(b) An order, rule, or regulation in effect under a law replaced by section 102 of this Act continues in effect under the corresponding provision of this Act until repealed, amended, or superseded.

“(c) An action taken or an offense committed under a law replaced by section 102 of this Act is deemed to have been taken or committed under the corresponding provision of this Act.

“(d) An inference of legislative construction is not to be drawn by reason of the caption or catch line of a provision enacted by section 102 of this Act.

“(e) If a provision of this Act is held invalid, all valid provisions that are severable from the invalid provision remain in effect. If a provision of this Act is held invalid in any of its applications, the provision remains valid for all valid applications that are severable from any of the invalid applications.”

Section 5103(a)–(f) of Pub. L. 99–509, title V, subtitle B, Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1927, provided that:

“(a) Laws effective after January 1, 1986, that are inconsistent with this subtitle supersede this subtitle to the extent of the inconsistency.

“(b) A reference to a law replaced by this subtitle, including a reference in a regulation, order, or other law, is deemed to refer to the corresponding provision of this subtitle.

“(c) An order, rule, or regulation in effect under a law replaced by this subtitle continues in effect under the corresponding provision of this subtitle until repealed, amended, or superseded.

“(d) An action taken or an offense committed under a law replaced by this subtitle is deemed to have been taken or committed under the corresponding provision of this subtitle.

“(e) An inference of legislative construction is not to be drawn by reason of the caption or catch line of a provision enacted by this subtitle.

“(f) If a provision enacted by this subtitle is held invalid, all valid provisions that are severable from the invalid provision remain in effect. If a provision of this subtitle is held invalid in one or more of its applications, the provision remains in effect in all valid applications that are severable from the invalid application or applications.”

Section 2(a)–(f) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 598, provided that:

“(a) Laws effective after December 31, 1982, that are inconsistent with this Act supersede this Act to the extent of the inconsistency.

“(b) A reference to a law replaced by this Act, including a reference in a regulation, order, or other law, is deemed to refer to the corresponding provision of this Act.

“(c) An order, rule, or regulation in effect under a law replaced by this Act continues in effect under the corresponding provision of this Act until repealed, amended, or superseded.

“(d) An action taken or an offense committed under a law replaced by this Act is deemed to have been taken or committed under the corresponding provision of this Act.

“(e) An inference of legislative construction is not to be drawn by reason of the caption or catch line of a provision enacted by this Act.

“(f) If a provision enacted by this Act is held invalid, all valid provisions that are severable from the invalid provision remain in effect. If a provision of this Act is held invalid in one or more of its applications, the provision remains in effect in all valid applications that are severable from the invalid application or applications.”

Codification of Shipping and Maritime Laws by Federal Maritime Commission and Secretary of Transportation

Section 2(j) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 599, provided that: “Within 2 years after the date of enactment of this Act [Aug. 26, 1983], the Federal Maritime Commission and the Secretary of Transportation each shall submit to Congress a proposed codification of the laws within their respective jurisdictions related to shipping and maritime matters.”

Repeals and Savings Provisions

Section 106(a) of Pub. L. 100–710, title I, Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4752, provided that: “The repeal of a law by this title may not be construed as a legislative implication that the provision was or was not in effect before its repeal.”

Section 106(b) of Pub. L. 100–710, title I, Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4752, repealed specified laws relating to shipping, except for rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before the effective date of this title, which is Jan. 1, 1989, with certain exceptions and qualifications, see section 107 of Pub. L. 100–710, set out as a note under section 30101 of this title.

Section 5104(a) of Pub. L. 99–509, title V, subtitle B, Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1928, provided that: “The repeal of a law by this subtitle may not be construed as a legislative implication that the provision was or was not in effect before its repeal.”

Section 5104(b) of Pub. L. 99–509, title V, subtitle B, Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1928, repealed specified laws relating to shipping, except for rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before Oct. 21, 1986.

Section 4(a) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 599, provided that: “The repeal of a law by this Act may not be construed as a legislative implication that the provision was or was not in effect before its repeal.”

Section 4(b) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 599, repealed specified laws relating to shipping, except for rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before Aug. 26, 1983, and except as provided by section 2 of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as notes above and notes under sections 3101, 3302, 3715, and 6301 of this title.

Title Referred to in Other Sections

This title is referred to in section 1273a of Appendix to this title; title 7 section 5602; title 19 section 1609; title 26 section 415; title 33 section 59aa; title 42 section 9607.

[Subtitle I—General]

[No Present Sections]

Subtitle II—Vessels and Seamen

Part A—General Provisions

Chap.
Sec.
21.
General
2101
23.
Operation of vessels generally
2301

        

Part B—Inspection and Regulation of Vessels

31.
General
3101
32.
Management of vessels
3201
33.
Inspection generally
3301
35.
Carriage of passengers
3501
37.
Carriage of liquid bulk dangerous cargoes
3701
39.
Carriage of animals
3901
41.
Uninspected vessels generally
4101
43.
Recreational vessels
4301
45.
Fish processing vessels 1
4501

        

47.
Abandonment of barges
4701

        

Part C—Load Lines of Vessels

51.
Load lines
5101

        

Part D—Marine Casualties

61.
Reporting marine casualties
6101
63.
Investigating marine casualties
6301

        

Part E—Merchant Seamen Licenses, Certificates, and Documents

71.
Licenses and certificates of registry
7101
73.
Merchant mariners’ documents
7301
75.
General procedures for licensing, certification, and documentation
7501
77.
Suspension and revocation
7701

        

Part F—Manning of Vessels

81.
General
8101
83.
Masters and officers
8301
85.
Pilots
8501
87.
Unlicensed personnel
8701
89.
Small vessel manning
8901
91.
Tank vessel manning standards
9101
93.
Great Lakes pilotage
9301

        

Part G—Merchant Seamen Protection and Relief

101.
General
10101
103.
Foreign and intercoastal voyages
10301
105.
Coastwise voyages
10501
106.
Fishing voyages
10601
107.
Effects of deceased seamen
10701
109.
Proceedings on unseaworthiness
10901
111.
Protection and relief
11101
112.
Merchant Mariner Benefits 2
11201

        

113.
Official logbooks
11301
115.
Offenses and penalties
11501

        

Part H—Identification of Vessels

121.
Documentation of vessels
12101
123.
Numbering undocumented vessels
12301
125.
Vessel Identification System 2
12501

        

Part I—State Boating Safety Programs

131.
Recreational boating safety
13101

        

Part J—Measurement of Vessels

141.
General
14101
143.
Convention measurement
14301
145.
Regulatory measurement
14501
147.
Penalties
14701

        

Amendments

1998—Pub. L. 105–368, title IV, §402(b), Nov. 11, 1998, 112 Stat. 3337, added item 112.

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3930, added item 32.

1992—Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5304, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5083, added item 47.

1988—Pub. L. 100–710, title I, §101(b), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4738, added item 125.

Pub. L. 100–424, §6(b), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1592, added item 106.

1986—Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(1), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1913, inserted items for parts C and J.

1985—Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(A), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 67, substituted “Merchant Seamen Licenses, Certifications, and” for “Licenses, Certificates, and Merchant Mariners’ ” in heading for part E.

1984—Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(7)(A), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 446, inserted “generally” in item 41, reenacted item 43 without change, and added item 45.

Subtitle Referred to in Other Sections

This subtitle is referred to in title 33 section 59ii.

1 Chapter heading amended by Pub. L. 100–424 without corresponding amendment of subtitle analysis.

2 So in original. Only first word should be capitalized.

Part A—General Provisions

Historical and Revision Notes

Part A contains general provisions that apply throughout the subtitle and provisions that apply generally to the operation of all vessels.

Part Referred to in Other Sections

This part is referred to in section 14305 of this title.

CHAPTER 21—GENERAL

Sec.
2101.
General definitions.
2102.
Limited definitions.
2103.
Superintendence of the merchant marine.
2104.
Delegation.
2105.
Report.
2106.
Liability in rem.
2107.
Civil penalty procedures.
2108.
Refund of penalties.
2109.
Public vessels.
2110.
Fees.
2111.
Pay for overtime services.
2112.
Authority to change working hours.
2113.
Authority to exempt certain vessels.
2114.
Protection of seamen against discrimination.
2115.
Civil penalty to enforce alcohol and dangerous drug testing.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 21 contains definitions that are general in nature and applicable to all references within Subtitle II—Vessels and Seamen. The chapter provides the basic authority and responsibility for the enforcement and administration of this subtitle with appropriate delegation and reporting requirements.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §303(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3917, added item 2115.

1990—Pub. L. 101–508, title X, §10401(b), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388–398, substituted “Fees” for “Fees prohibited” in item 2110.

1984—Pub. L. 98–557, §13(b), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2864, added item 2114.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in title 16 section 1862.

§2101. General definitions

In this subtitle—

(1) “associated equipment”—

(A) means—

(i) a system, accessory, component, or appurtenance of a recreational vessel; or

(ii) a marine safety article intended for use on board a recreational vessel; but


(B) does not include radio equipment.


(2) “barge” means a non-self-propelled vessel.

(3) “Boundary Line” means a line established under section 2(b) of the Act of February 19, 1895 (33 U.S.C. 151).

(3a) “citizen of the United States” means a national of the United States as defined in section 101(a)(22) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(22)) or an individual citizen of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands who is exclusively domiciled in the Northern Mariana Islands within the meaning of section 1005(e) of the Covenant to establish a Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in Political Union with the United States of America (48 U.S.C. 1681 note).1

(4) “Coast Guard” means the organization established and continued under section 1 of title 14.

(5) “commercial service” includes any type of trade or business involving the transportation of goods or individuals, except service performed by a combatant vessel.

(5a) “consideration” means an economic benefit, inducement, right, or profit including pecuniary payment accruing to an individual, person, or entity, but not including a voluntary sharing of the actual expenses of the voyage, by monetary contribution or donation of fuel, food, beverage, or other supplies.

(6) “consular officer” means an officer or employee of the United States Government designated under regulations to grant visas.

(7) “crude oil” means a liquid hydrocarbon mixture occurring naturally in the earth, whether or not treated to render it suitable for transportation, and includes crude oil from which certain distillate fractions may have been removed, and crude oil to which certain distillate fractions may have been added.

(8) “crude oil tanker” means a tanker engaged in the trade of carrying crude oil.

(8a) “dangerous drug” means a narcotic drug, a controlled substance, or a controlled substance analog (as defined in section 102 of the Comprehensive Drug Abuse 2 and Control Act of 1970 (21 U.S.C. 802)).

(9) “discharge”, when referring to a substance discharged from a vessel, includes spilling, leaking, pumping, pouring, emitting, emptying, or dumping, however caused.

(10) “documented vessel” means a vessel for which a certificate of documentation has been issued under chapter 121 of this title.

(10a) “Exclusive Economic Zone” means the zone established by Presidential Proclamation Numbered 5030, dated March 10, 1983.

(11) “fish” means finfish, mollusks, crustaceans, and all other forms of marine animal and plant life, except marine mammals and birds.

(11a) “fishing vessel” means a vessel that commercially engages in the catching, taking, or harvesting of fish or an activity that can reasonably be expected to result in the catching, taking, or harvesting of fish.

(11b) “fish processing vessel” means a vessel that commercially prepares fish or fish products other than by gutting, decapitating, gilling, skinning, shucking, icing, freezing, or brine chilling.

(11c) “fish tender vessel” means a vessel that commercially supplies, stores, refrigerates, or transports fish, fish products, or materials directly related to fishing or the preparation of fish to or from a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel or a fish processing facility.

(12) “foreign vessel” means a vessel of foreign registry or operated under the authority of a country except the United States.

(13) “freight vessel” means a motor vessel of more than 15 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title that carries freight for hire, except an oceanographic research vessel or an offshore supply vessel.

(13a) “Great Lakes barge” means a non-self-propelled vessel of at least 3,500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title operating on the Great Lakes.

(14) “hazardous material” means a liquid material or substance that is—

(A) flammable or combustible;

(B) designated a hazardous substance under section 311(b) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1321); or

(C) designated a hazardous material under section 5103(a) of title 49;


(14a) “major conversion” means a conversion of a vessel that—

(A) substantially changes the dimensions or carrying capacity of the vessel;

(B) changes the type of the vessel;

(C) substantially prolongs the life of the vessel; or

(D) otherwise so changes the vessel that it is essentially a new vessel, as decided by the Secretary.


(15) “marine environment” means—

(A) the navigable waters of the United States and the land and resources in and under those waters;

(B) the waters and fishery resources of an area over which the United States asserts exclusive fishery management authority;

(C) the seabed and subsoil of the outer Continental Shelf of the United States, the resources of the Shelf, and the waters superjacent to the Shelf; and

(D) the recreational, economic, and scenic values of the waters and resources referred to in subclauses (A)–(C) of this clause.


(15a) “mobile offshore drilling unit” means a vessel capable of engaging in drilling operations for the exploration or exploitation of subsea resources.

(16) “motor vessel” means a vessel propelled by machinery other than steam.

(17) “nautical school vessel” means a vessel operated by or in connection with a nautical school or an educational institution under section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986.

(17a) “navigable waters of the United States” includes all waters of the territorial sea of the United States as described in Presidential Proclamation No. 5928 of December 27, 1988.

(17b) “numbered vessel” means a vessel for which a number has been issued under chapter 123 of this title.

(18) “oceanographic research vessel” means a vessel that the Secretary finds is being employed only in instruction in oceanography or limnology, or both, or only in oceanographic or limnological research, including those studies about the sea such as seismic, gravity meter, and magnetic exploration and other marine geophysical or geological surveys, atmospheric research, and biological research.

(19) “offshore supply vessel” means a motor vessel of more than 15 gross tons but less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title that regularly carries goods, supplies, individuals in addition to the crew, or equipment in support of exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral or energy resources.

(20) “oil” includes oil of any type or in any form, including petroleum, fuel oil, sludge, oil refuse, and oil mixed with wastes except dredged spoil.

(20a) “oil spill response vessel” means a vessel that is designated in its certificate of inspection as such a vessel, or that is adapted to respond to a discharge of oil or a hazardous material.

(20b) “overall in length” means—

(A) for a foreign vessel or a vessel engaged on a foreign voyage, the greater of—

(i) 96 percent of the length on a waterline at 85 percent of the least molded depth measured from the top of the keel (or on a vessel designed with a rake of keel, on a waterline parallel to the designed waterline); or

(ii) the length from the fore side of the stem to the axis of the rudder stock on that waterline; and


(B) for any other vessel, the horizontal distance of the hull between the foremost part of the stem and the aftermost part of the stern, excluding fittings and attachments.


(21) “passenger”—

(A) means an individual carried on the vessel except—

(i) the owner or an individual representative of the owner or, in the case of a vessel under charter, an individual charterer or individual representative of the charterer;

(ii) the master; or

(iii) a member of the crew engaged in the business of the vessel who has not contributed consideration for carriage and who is paid for on board services;


(B) on an offshore supply vessel, means an individual carried on the vessel except—

(i) an individual included in clause (i), (ii), or (iii) of subparagraph (A) of this paragraph;

(ii) an employee of the owner, or of a subcontractor to the owner, engaged in the business of the owner;

(iii) an employee of the charterer, or of a subcontractor to the charterer, engaged in the business of the charterer; or

(iv) an individual employed in a phase of exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral or energy resources served by the vessel;


(C) on a fishing vessel, fish processing vessel, or fish tender vessel, means an individual carried on the vessel except—

(i) an individual included in clause (i), (ii), or (iii) of subparagraph (A) of this paragraph;

(ii) a managing operator;

(iii) an employee of the owner, or of a subcontractor to the owner, engaged in the business of the owner;

(iv) an employee of the charterer, or of a subcontractor to the charterer, engaged in the business of the charterer; or

(v) an observer or sea sampler on board the vessel pursuant to a requirement of State or Federal law; or


(D) on a sailing school vessel, means an individual carried on the vessel except—

(i) an individual included in clause (i), (ii), or (iii) of subparagraph (A) of this paragraph;

(ii) an employee of the owner of the vessel engaged in the business of the owner, except when the vessel is operating under a demise charter;

(iii) an employee of the demise charterer of the vessel engaged in the business of the demise charterer; or

(iv) a sailing school instructor or sailing school student.


(21a) “passenger for hire” means a passenger for whom consideration is contributed as a condition of carriage on the vessel, whether directly or indirectly flowing to the owner, charterer, operator, agent, or any other person having an interest in the vessel.

(22) “passenger vessel” means a vessel of at least 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(A) carrying more than 12 passengers, including at least one passenger for hire;

(B) that is chartered and carrying more than 12 passengers; or

(C) that is a submersible vessel carrying at least one passenger for hire.


(23) “product carrier” means a tanker engaged in the trade of carrying oil except crude oil.

(24) “public vessel” means a vessel that—

(A) is owned, or demise chartered, and operated by the United States Government or a government of a foreign country; and

(B) is not engaged in commercial service.


(25) “recreational vessel” means a vessel—

(A) being manufactured or operated primarily for pleasure; or

(B) leased, rented, or chartered to another for the latter's pleasure.


(26) “recreational vessel manufacturer” means a person engaged in the manufacturing, construction, assembly, or importation of recreational vessels, components, or associated equipment.

(27) “sailing instruction” means teaching, research, and practical experience in operating vessels propelled primarily by sail and may include—

(A) any subject related to that operation and to the sea, including seamanship, navigation, oceanography, other nautical and marine sciences, and maritime history and literature; and

(B) only when in conjunction with a subject referred to in subclause (A) of this clause, instruction in mathematics and language arts skills to sailing school students having learning disabilities.


(28) “sailing school instructor” means an individual who is on board a sailing school vessel to provide sailing instruction, but does not include an operator or crewmember who is among those required to be on board the vessel to meet a requirement established under part F of this subtitle.

(29) “sailing school student” means an individual who is on board a sailing school vessel to receive sailing instruction.

(30) “sailing school vessel” means a vessel—

(A) that is less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title;

(B) carrying more than 6 individuals who are sailing school instructors or sailing school students;

(C) principally equipped for propulsion by sail, even if the vessel has an auxiliary means of propulsion; and

(D) owned or demise chartered, and operated by an organization described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3)) and exempt from tax under section 501(a) of that Code, or by a State or political subdivision of a State, during times that the vessel is operated by the organization, State, or political subdivision only for sailing instruction.


(31) “scientific personnel” means individuals on board an oceanographic research vessel only to engage in scientific research, or to instruct or receive instruction in oceanography or limnology.

(32) “seagoing barge” means a non-self-propelled vessel of at least 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title making voyages beyond the Boundary Line.

(33) “seagoing motor vessel” means a motor vessel of at least 300 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title making voyages beyond the Boundary Line.

(34) “Secretary”, except in part H, means the head of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating.

(35) “small passenger vessel” means a vessel of less than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(A) carrying more than 6 passengers, including at least one passenger for hire;

(B) that is chartered with the crew provided or specified by the owner or the owner's representative and carrying more than 6 passengers;

(C) that is chartered with no crew provided or specified by the owner or the owner's representative and carrying more than 12 passengers; or

(D) that is a submersible vessel carrying at least one passenger for hire.


(36) “State” means a State of the United States, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, the District of Columbia, the Northern Mariana Islands, and any other territory or possession of the United States.

(37) “steam vessel” means a vessel propelled in whole or in part by steam, except a recreational vessel of not more than 40 feet in length.

(37a) “submersible vessel” means a vessel that is capable of operating below the surface of the water.

(38) “tanker” means a self-propelled tank vessel constructed or adapted primarily to carry oil or hazardous material in bulk in the cargo spaces.

(39) “tank vessel” means a vessel that is constructed or adapted to carry, or that carries, oil or hazardous material in bulk as cargo or cargo residue, and that—

(A) is a vessel of the United States;

(B) operates on the navigable waters of the United States; or

(C) transfers oil or hazardous material in a port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.


(40) “towing vessel” means a commercial vessel engaged in or intending to engage in the service of pulling, pushing, or hauling along side, or any combination of pulling, pushing, or hauling along side.

(41) “undocumented” means not having and not required to have a document issued under chapter 121 of this title.

(42) “uninspected passenger vessel” means an uninspected vessel—

(A) of at least 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(i) carrying not more than 12 passengers, including at least one passenger for hire; or

(ii) that is chartered with the crew provided or specified by the owner or the owner's representative and carrying not more than 12 passengers; and


(B) of less than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(i) carrying not more than 6 passengers, including at least one passenger for hire; or

(ii) that is chartered with the crew provided or specified by the owner or the owner's representative and carrying not more than 6 passengers.


(43) “uninspected vessel” means a vessel not subject to inspection under section 3301 of this title that is not a recreational vessel.

(44) “United States”, when used in a geographic sense, means the States of the United States, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, the District of Columbia, the Northern Mariana Islands, and any other territory or possession of the United States.

(45) “vessel” has the same meaning given that term in section 3 of title 1.

(46) “vessel of the United States” means a vessel documented or numbered under the laws of the United States or titled under the law of a State.

(47) “vessel of war” means a vessel—

(A) belonging to the armed forces of a country;

(B) bearing the external marks distinguishing vessels of war of that country;

(C) under the command of an officer commissioned by the government of that country and whose name appears in the appropriate service list or its equivalent; and

(D) staffed by a crew under regular armed forces discipline.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 501; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(1), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 445; Pub. L. 98–454, title III, §301(a), Oct. 5, 1984, 98 Stat. 1734; Pub. L. 98–557, §34(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2876; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(1), (2), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 444; Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5102(b)(1), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1926; Pub. L. 99–514, §2, Oct. 22, 1986, 100 Stat. 2095; Pub. L. 99–640, §§10(b)(1), 11(a), 13(d), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3549–3551; Pub. L. 100–239, §6(a)(1), Jan. 11, 1988, 101 Stat. 1781; Pub. L. 100–424, §8(c)(1), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1593; Pub. L. 100–710, title I, §104(a)(1), (2), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4749; Pub. L. 101–225, title II, §209, Dec. 12, 1989, 103 Stat. 1913; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(a)(2)(A), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511; Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(1), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5208(a), Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5075; Pub. L. 103–206, title V, §§502–510, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2439–2441; Pub. L. 103–272, §5(l), July 5, 1994, 108 Stat. 1375; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §709, title XI, §1104(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3934, 3966; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §301(b)(1), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3417.)

Historical and Revision Notes

A number of definitions are provided because of the need to define jurisdictional and applicability limits of various sections to the many types and classes of vessels.

 
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2101(1) 46:1452(8)
2101(2) ..............................................
2101(3) ..............................................
2101(4) 14:1
2101(5) 46:391a(2)(H)
2101(6) ..............................................
2101(7) 46:391a(2)(S)
2101(8) 46:391a(2)(N)
2101(9) 46:391a(2)(A)
2101(10) 46:65(1)
2101(11) 46:65(2)
2101(12) 46:391a(2)(B)

46:597

46:599

2101(13) 46:404

46:390(e)

2101(14) 46:391a(2)(C)
2101(15) 46:391a(2)(D)
2101(16) 46:361

46:367

46:404

2101(17) 46:404

46:1295f(c)

46:1295g(e)(1)

2101(18) 46:441(1)
2101(19) 46:404–1(1)
2101(20) 46:391a(2)(E)
2101(21) 46:390(a)

46:404–1(4)

46:1452(5)

2101(22) 46:391(c)
2101(23) 46:391a(2)(O)
2101(24) 46:391a(2)(G)
2101(25) 46:1452(1)(A), (B)
2101(26) 46:1452(7)
2101(27) 46:390(f)
2101(28) 46:390(h)
2101(29) 46:390(i)
2101(30) 46:390(g)
2101(31) 46:441(2)
2101(32) 46:395(e)
2101(33) 46:367
2101(34) 33:151

46:216(b)

46:239a(b)

46:390(d)

46:391a(2)(I)

46:405(b)(1)(A)

46:481(a)

46:672(a)

46:1452(9)

2101(35) 46:390(b)
2101(36) ..............................................
2101(37) 46:361
2101(38) 46:391a(2)(M)
2101(39) 46:391a(3)
2101(40) 46:405
2101(41) 46:1452(3)
2101(42) 46:1452(1)(C)
2101(43) 46:526
2101(44) ..............................................
2101(45) 1:3

46:1452(2)

2101(46) 46:391a(2)(L)

Section 2101(1) defines the type of “associated equipment” that is involved in the use of recreational boats that are subject to Federal regulatory authority. This equipment is subject to a number of controls under federally established construction and performance standards. Radio equipment is exempt from these regulatory controls, since this equipment continues to be regulated by the Federal Communications Commission.

Section 2101(2) defines “barge” as a vessel that is non-self-propelled and that is often pushed ahead, towed alongside, or towed astern on a hawser by a towing vessel. It does not include a vessel that is propelled by sail only.

Section 2101(3) defines “boundary line” for the establishment of jurisdictional parameters for various maritime safety laws. Public Law 96–324, codified at 33 U.S.C. 151, permits the Secretary to establish appropriate identifiable lines dividing inland waters of the U.S. from the high seas for the purpose of determining the applicability of these laws. These laws will now be included within subtitle II of title 46—Shipping. These lines may not be located more than twelve nautical miles seaward of the baseline from which the territorial sea is measured and may differ in position for the purposes of different parts or sections of subtitle II.

Section 2101(4) defines “Coast Guard”.

Section 2101(5) provides that wherever the term “commercial service” is used it is to include all vessels except those that are primarily used for combatant purposes. This is to make sure that vessels that are engaged in the transportation of goods or individuals are subject to the applicable maritime and environmental safety laws, even if they are sovereign controlled vessels.

Section 2101(6) defines “consular officer” as one who has authority to issue visas. Traditionally this person is knowledgeable and familiar with the maritime safety and seamen's welfare laws.

Section 2101(7) defines “crude oil” because certain equipment requirements like inert gas systems, segregated ballast tanks, crude oil washing systems or special ballast arrangements are applicable only to tank vessels that carry crude oil. Crude oil is still included within the definition of “hazardous material” and “oil”.

Section 2101(8) defines a “crude oil tanker” as one engaged in carrying crude oil. The definition does not include a tank barge since a tanker is defined as a self-propelled tank vessel. See also 2101(38).

Section 2101(9) makes it clear that the term “discharge” when referring to a substance that emanates from a vessel and is related to the marine environmental laws concerning pollution by oil or hazardous substances.

Section 2101(10) defines a “documented vessel” as any vessel of the United States that has been issued a certificate of documentation that might include a register, enrollment, license, or enrollment and license for various trades.

Section 2101(11) lists what is included in the term “fisheries” for the purpose of documentation of vessels and is intended to be all-inclusive of the numerous types of fishing activities.

Section 2101(12) defines “foreign vessel” as any foreign flag or foreign operated vessel that is operated under the jurisdiction or authority of a government other than the United States.

Section 2101(13) defines a “freight vessel” as a motor vessel or any vessel propelled by diesel or other internal combustion engines and that carries freight for hire.

Section 2101(14) defines “hazardous materials” as a broad range of materials that are not only flammable or combustible but are also designated under related maritime safety and environmental laws.

Section 2101(15) defines “marine environment” as an all-inclusive term that was developed to cover land and water areas that could be affected by pollution from all vessels and not only tank vessels.

Section 2101(16) defines “motor vessel” as a vessel propelled by machinery other than steam to make it clear that these vessels are not steam vessels.

Section 2101(17) defines “nautical school vessel” as a vessel that can be a privately owned and operated as well as a publicly owned and operated school vessel.

Section 2101(18) defines “oceanographic research vessel” as a vessel employed in oceanography or limnology research or instruction. It is defined because this type of vessel, while not inspected and certified as such, is subject to a number of special statutory and regulatory requirements.

Section 2101(19) defines “offshore supply vessel” as a class of vessel that is limited by tonnage and its employment in the mineral and oil industry and while so employed it is not a small passenger vessel.

Section 2101(20) defines “oil” to include oil of any type, in any form, or in any mixture. This is the definition that originated with marine environment and pollution laws and continues the definition that was adopted by port and tanker safety laws.

Section 2101(21) defines the term “passengers” in relation to various types of vessels. Due to the complexity of existing laws with respect to the definitions of “passenger” on various categories of vessels and the need to not make any changes of a substantive nature that could be construed as controversial, four definitions of “passenger” have been included.

Section 2101(22) defines “passenger vessel” as one that is at least 100 gross tons and carries at least one passenger for hire.

Section 2101(23) defines “product carrier” as a tanker that is engaged in carrying oil. This definition when read with the definition of tanker means that it is a self-propelled vessel. A tank barge carrying oil products is a tank vessel but is not subject to the special standards or requirements for a product carrier.

Section 2101(24) defines a “public vessel” as a governmental vessel that is not in commercial service. It should be noted that a sovereign-controlled foreign-flag vessel that is engaged in commercial service is not a public vessel and is subject to maritime safety and environment laws.

Section 2101(25) defines a “recreational vessel” as a class of vessel whose primary purpose is for pleasure. These vessels while not subject to inspection are subject to certain requirements of law to improve boating safety.

Section 2101(26) defines a “recreational vessel manufacturer” as one that is involved with not only the recreational vessels themselves but also with their components or associated equipment.

Section 2101(27), (28), (29), and (30) provides a number of definitions that define the type of instruction, instructor, student, and vessel that is involved in the teaching of sailing.

Section 2101(31) defines “scientific personnel” as individuals engaged in oceanography or limnology because they are specially treated under various maritime safety requirements.

Section 2101(32) defines a “seagoing barge” as a vessel that is at least 100 gross tons making voyages to sea beyond the boundary line.

Section 2101(33) defines a “seagoing motor vessel” as a vessel that must be a motor vessel, as defined in 2101(15), of at least 300 gross tons making voyages to sea beyond the boundary line.

Section 2101(34) defines “Secretary” so that maritime safety and seamen's welfare jurisdiction remains within the Coast Guard at all times.

Section 2101(35) defines “small passenger vessel” as one that is less than 100 gross tons carrying more than six passengers as defined in section 2101(21).

Section 2101(36) defines “State” as a State, territory or possession of the United States and is used to establish jurisdictional limits for the application of the various maritime safety and environmental safety laws of this subtitle. This definition is further limited by definitions in section 2102 that relate to recreational boating safety and facility improvement programs.

Section 2101(37) defines a “steam vessel” as a vessel propelled by steam. However, steam vessels of not more than 40 feet that are used exclusively for pleasure are not included.

Section 2101(38) defines “tanker” as a self-propelled tank vessel that has been constructed or primarily adapted to carry oil or hazardous material in bulk in the cargo spaces. This vessel is a subclass of tank vessel, which is defined in section 2101(39). This subclass definition is necessary because certain statutory minimum requirements that are consistent with internationally accepted standards are solely applicable to these vessels.

Section 2101(39) defines a “tank vessel” as a vessel carrying oil or hazardous materials in bulk or residue including a tanker as defined in section 2101(38).

Section 2101(40) defines “towing vessel” as a vessel in commercial service that pushes, pulls, or tows alongside and includes what is traditionally known as a tug.

Section 2101(41) defines “undocumented” which, in part, facilitates the classification of vessels that may be numbered by the proper issuing authority in a State.

Section 2101(42) defines an “uninspected passenger vessel” as a vessel carrying six or less passengers.

Section 2101(43) defines an “uninspected vessel” as a vessel not subject to inspection and certification by the Coast Guard under section 3301. Recreational vessels and inland towing vessels are typical uninspected vessels.

Section 2101(44) defines “United States” to establish geographical boundaries for the applicability of the various maritime safety and environmental safety laws of this subtitle. This definition is further limited by definitions in section 2102 that relate to recreational boating safety and facility improvement programs.

Section 2101(45) makes it clear that “vessel” as used in this subtitle has the same meaning as is provided in section 3 of title 1, of the U.S.C.

Section 2101(46) defines “vessel of the United States” as a vessel that is documented or numbered under the laws of the United States. A documented vessel and those vessels that are numbered by a State or Federal authority are afforded the protection of the laws of the United States.

References in Text

Section 1005(e) of the Covenant to establish a Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in Political Union with the United States of America, referred to in par. (3a), is set out as a note under section 1801 of Title 48, Territories and Insular Possessions.

Presidential Proclamation Numbered 5030, referred to in par. (10a), is set out under section 1453 of Title 16, Conservation.

Section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986, referred to in par. (17), is section 13 of Pub. L. 99–640, which enacted section 484d of Title 40, Public Buildings, Property, and Works and amended sections 2101 and 3305 of this title.

Presidential Proclamation No. 5928, referred to in par. (17a), is set out under section 1331 of Title 43, Public Lands.

Amendments

1998—Pars. (17a), (17b). Pub. L. 105–383 added par. (17a) and redesignated former par. (17a) as (17b).

1996—Par. (13). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “15 gross tons”.

Par. (13a). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “3,500 gross tons”.

Par. (19). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Par. (20a). Pub. L. 104–324, §1104(a)(2), added par. (20a). Former par. (20a) redesignated (20b).

Par. (20b). Pub. L. 104–324, §1104(a)(1), redesignated par. (20a) as (20b).

Par. (22). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(4), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Par. (30)(A). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(5), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Par. (32). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(6), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Par. (33). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(7), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “300 gross tons”.

Par. (35). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(8), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Par. (42). Pub. L. 104–324, §709(9), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons” in subpars. (A) and (B).

1994—Par. (14)(C). Pub. L. 103–272 substituted “section 5103(a) of title 49” for “section 104 of the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act (49 App. U.S.C. 1803)”.

1993—Par. (5a). Pub. L. 103–206, §507, added par. (5a).

Par. (19). Pub. L. 103–206, §508, inserted “individuals in addition to the crew,” after “supplies,” and struck out “and is not a small passenger vessel” after “resources”.

Par. (21). Pub. L. 103–206, §502, amended par. (21) generally, substituting subpars. (A) to (D) defining “passenger” for former subpars. (A) to (F) defining “passenger”.

Par. (21a). Pub. L. 103–206, §506, added par. (21a).

Par. (22). Pub. L. 103–206, §503, amended par. (22) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (22) read as follows: “ ‘passenger vessel’ means a vessel of at least 100 gross tons carrying at least one passenger for hire.”

Par. (30)(B). Pub. L. 103–206, §509, substituted “more than 6” for “at least 6”.

Par. (35). Pub. L. 103–206, §504, amended par. (35) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (35) read as follows: “ ‘small passenger vessel’ means a vessel of less than 100 gross tons carrying more than 6 passengers (as defined in clause (21)(B) and (C) of this section).”

Par. (37a). Pub. L. 103–206, §510, added par. (37a).

Par. (42). Pub. L. 103–206, §505, amended par. (42) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (42) read as follows: “ ‘uninspected passenger vessel’ means an uninspected vessel carrying not more than 6 passengers.”

1992—Par. (13a). Pub. L. 102–587 added par. (13a).

1990—Par. (8a). Pub. L. 101–380 added par. (8a).

Par. (14)(C). Pub. L. 101–595 substituted “(49 App. U.S.C. 1803)” for “(49 U.S.C. 1803)”.

1989—Par. (17a). Pub. L. 101–225 added par. (17a).

1988—Par. (10a). Pub. L. 100–239 added par. (10a).

Par. (14a). Pub. L. 100–424 added par. (14a).

Par. (34). Pub. L. 100–710, §104(a)(1), inserted “, except in part H,” before “means”.

Par. (46). Pub. L. 100–710, §104(a)(2), inserted “or titled under the law of a State” before period at end.

1986—Par. (11b). Pub. L. 99–640, §10(b)(1), inserted “freezing,”.

Par. (14)(C). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(1), substituted “Materials” for “Material”.

Par. (15a). Pub. L. 99–640, §11(a), added par. (15a).

Par. (17). Pub. L. 99–640, §13(d), inserted “or an educational institution under section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986”.

Par. (20a). Pub. L. 99–509, §5102(b)(1)(A), added par. (20a).

Par. (21)(A)(ii). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(2)(A), inserted “or other individual engaged in the business of the vessel who has not contributed consideration for carriage on board the vessel” after “crewmember”.

Par. (21)(B). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(2)(D), struck out “or a sailing school vessel,” after “passenger vessel”.

Par. (21)(B)(v) to (vii). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(2)(B), added cls. (v) and (vi) and struck out former cls. (v) to (vii) which read as follows:

“(v) a guest on board a vessel that is being operated only for pleasure, or a guest on board a sailing school vessel, who has not contributed consideration for carriage on board;

“(vi) an individual on board a towing vessel of at least 50 gross tons who has not contributed consideration for carriage on board; or

“(vii) a sailing school instructor or sailing school student.”

Par. (21)(F). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(2)(C), added subpar. (F).

Par. (30)(D). Pub. L. 99–514 substituted “Internal Revenue Code of 1986” for “Internal Revenue Code of 1954”.

Par. (47). Pub. L. 99–509, §5102(b)(1)(B), added par. (47).

1984—Par. (3a). Pub. L. 98–454 added par. (3a).

Par. (11). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(1)(A), substituted “ ‘fish’ means finfish, mollusks, crustaceans, and all other forms of marine animal and plant lift, except marine mammals and birds” for “ ‘fisheries’ includes planting, cultivating, catching, taking, or harvesting fish, shellfish, marine animals, pearls, shells, or marine vegetation at a place in the fishery conservation zone established by section 101 of the Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976 (16 U.S.C. 1811)”, which is now covered in section 12101 of this title.

Pars. (11a) to (11c). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(1)(B), added pars. (11a) to (11c).

Par. (21)(B). Pub. L. 98–557, §34(a)(1), inserted reference to a sailing school vessel in provisions preceding cl. (i).

Par. (21)(E). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(1)(C), added subpar. (E).

Par. (27). Pub. L. 98–557, §34(a)(2), designated existing provisions as subpar. (A) and added subpar. (B).

Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

Section 5208(c), (d) of Pub. L. 102–587 provided that:

“(c) For Great Lakes barges placed in operation after the date of enactment of this Act [Nov. 4, 1992], the amendments made by this section [amending this section and section 3301 of this title] take effect on the date of enactment of this Act.

“(d)(1) For Great Lakes barges in operation on the date of enactment of this Act, the amendments made by this section take effect one year after the date of enactment of this Act.

“(2) The Secretary of Transportation may impose reasonable interim requirements to assure safe operation of the barges affected by paragraph (1).”

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Effective Date of 1988 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 100–710 effective Jan. 1, 1989, with certain exceptions and qualifications, see section 107 of Pub. L. 100–710, set out as an Effective Date note under section 30101 of this title.

Short Title of 1998 Amendment

Pub. L. 105–277, div. C, title II, §201, Oct. 21, 1998, 112 Stat. 2681–616, provided that: “This title [amending sections 12102, 12122, and 31322 of this title, enacting provisions set out as notes under section 12102 of this title and section 1851 of Title 16, Conservation, amending provisions set out as a note under section 1274 of the Appendix to this title, and repealing provisions set out as a note under section 12102 of this title] may be cited as the ‘American Fisheries Act’.”

Short Title of 1996 Amendment

Section 601 of title VI of Pub. L. 104–324 provided that: “This title [enacting sections 3103 and 3201 to 3205 of this title, amending sections 3306 to 3309, 3316, and 3710 of this title, and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 3201 and 3306 of this title] may be cited as the ‘Coast Guard Regulatory Reform Act of 1996’.”

Short Title of 1993 Amendment

Section 501 of title V of Pub. L. 103–206 provided that: “This title [amending this section and sections 2113, 3306, and 4105 of this title and enacting provisions set out as notes under this section and section 3306 of this title] may be cited as the ‘Passenger Vessel Safety Act of 1993’.”

Short Title of 1990 Amendment

Section 601 of title VI of Pub. L. 101–595 provided that: “This title [amending this section and sections 2102, 3302, 4502, 5102, 5114, 8103, 8104, 8702, 12109, 12501, 12503, 12505, and 31308 of this title, repealing sections 4104, 5115, 8105, and 14102 of this title, and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 4502 and 7306 of this title] may be cited as the ‘Aleutian Trade Act of 1990’.”

Short Title of 1988 Amendments

Section 1 of Pub. L. 100–424 provided that: “This Act [enacting chapter 106 and sections 4505 to 4508 and 6104 of this title, amending this section and sections 3102, 3701, 4101, 4102, 4501 to 4504, and 6103 of this title, repealing sections 531 to 534 of the Appendix to this title, and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 4501, 4502, 4508, and 7101 of this title] may be cited as the ‘Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Safety Act of 1988’.”

Section 1 of Pub. L. 100–239 provided that: “This Act [enacting section 8704 of this title, amending this section, sections 8103, 8702, 12101, 12102, 12106 to 12108 of this title, sections 251 and 883 of the Appendix to this title, and section 1802 of title 16, Conservation, and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 8103, 8704, 12102, 12105, and 12108 of this title and section 883 of the Appendix of this title] may be cited as the ‘Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Anti-Reflagging Act of 1987’.”

Short Title of 1984 Amendment

Section 401 of title IV of Pub. L. 98–364 provided that: “This title [enacting sections 4501 to 4504, and 7311a of this title, amending this section and sections 3301, 3302, 3304, 3306, 3702, 7111, 7301, 7306, 7312, 8102, 8104, 8701, 8702, 10101, 11108, 11109, and 12101 of this title and enacting provisions set out as a note under section 3302 of this title] may be cited as the ‘Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Act’.”

Termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands

For termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, see note set out preceding section 1681 of Title 48, Territories and Insular Possessions.

Fishing and Fish Tender Vessels

Section 321 of Pub. L. 103–206 provided that:

“(a) In this section, ‘fish tender vessel’, ‘fishing vessel’, and ‘tank vessel’ have the meanings given those terms under section 2101 of title 46, United States Code.

“(b) A fishing vessel or fish tender vessel of not more than 750 gross tons, when engaged only in the fishing industry, shall not be deemed to be a tank vessel for the purposes of any law.

“(c)(1) This section does not affect the authority of the Secretary of Transportation under chapter 33 of title 46, United States Code, to regulate the operation of the vessels listed in subsection (b) to ensure the safe carriage of oil and hazardous substances.

“(2) This section does not affect the requirement for fish tender vessels engaged in the Aleutian trade to comply with chapters 33, 45, 51, 81, and 87 of title 46, United States Code, as provided in the Aleutian Trade Act of 1990 (Public Law 101–595) [see Short Title of 1990 Amendment note above].”

Applicability Date for Revised Regulations

Section 513 of Pub. L. 103–206 provided that:

“(a) Applicability Date for Certain Chartered Vessels.—Revised regulations governing small passenger vessels and passenger vessels (as the definitions of those terms in section 2101 of title 46, United States Code, are amended by this Act) shall not, before the date that is 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act [Dec. 20, 1993], apply to such vessels when chartered with no crew provided.

“(b) Extension of Period.—The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall extend for up to 30 additional months or until issuance of a certificate of inspection, whichever occurs first, the period of inapplicability specified in subsection (a) if the owner of the vessel concerned carries out the provisions of subsection (c) to the satisfaction of the Secretary.

“(c) Conditions for Extension.—To receive an extension authorized by subsection (b), the owner of the vessel shall—

“(1) make application for inspection with the Coast Guard within 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act [Dec. 20, 1993];

“(2) make the vessel available for examination by the Coast Guard prior to the carriage of passengers;

“(3)(A) correct especially any hazardous conditions involving the vessel's structure, electrical system, and machinery installation, such as (i) grossly inadequate, missing, unsound, or severely deteriorated frames or major structural members; (ii) wiring systems or electrical appliances without proper grounding or overcurrent protection; and (iii) significant fuel or exhaust system leaks;

“(B) equip the vessel with lifesaving and fire fighting equipment, or the portable equivalent, required for the route and number of persons carried; and

“(C) verify through stability tests, calculations, or other practical means (which may include a history of safe operations) that the vessel's stability is satisfactory for the size, route, and number of passengers; and

“(4) develop a work plan approved by the Coast Guard to complete in a good faith effort all requirements necessary for issuance of a certificate of inspection as soon as practicable.

“(d) Operation of Vessel During Extension Period.—The owner of a vessel receiving an extension under this section shall operate the vessel under the conditions of route, service, number of passengers, manning, and equipment as may be prescribed by the Coast Guard for the extension period.”

Tank Vessel Definition Clarification

Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5209, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5076, as amended by Pub. L. 105–383, title IV, §422, Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3439, provided that:

“(a) In this section, ‘offshore supply vessel’, ‘fish tender vessel’, ‘fishing vessel’, and ‘tank vessel’ have the meanings given those terms under section 2101 of title 46, United States Code.

“(b) The following vessels are deemed not to be a tank vessel for the purposes of any law:

“(1) An offshore supply vessel.

“(2) A fishing or fish tender vessel of not more than 750 gross tons that transfers without charge to a fishing vessel owned by the same person.

“(3) A vessel—

“(A) configured, outfitted, and operated primarily for dredging operations; and

“(B) engaged in dredging operations which transfers fuel to other vessels engaged in the same dredging operations without charge.

“(c)(1) This section does not affect the authority of the Secretary of Transportation under chapter 33 of title 46, United States Code, to regulate the operation of the vessels listed in subsection (b) to ensure the safe carriage of oil and hazardous substances.

“(2) This section does not affect the requirement for fish tender vessels engaged in the Aleutian trade to comply with chapters 33, 45, 51, 81, and 87 of title 46, United States Code, as provided in the Aleutian Trade Act of 1990 ([title VI of] Public Law 101–595) [see Short Title of 1990 Amendment note above].

“(d) Current regulations governing the vessels in subsection (b) remain in effect.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 2102, 2113, 3202, 4105 of this title; sections 121, 446c, 808, 808a, 883, 1160, 1807 of Appendix to this title; title 8 section 1184; title 15 section 2052; title 16 sections 1383a, 1802; title 22 section 1980b; title 33 sections 1225, 1321, 2602, 2704, 2732; title 42 section 7511b; title 49 section 5117.

1 See References in Text note below.

2 So in original. Probably should be “Abuse Prevention”.

§2102. Limited definitions

(a) In chapters 37, 43, 51, and 123 of this title and part I of this subtitle—

(1) “eligible State” means a State that has a State recreational boating safety program accepted by the Secretary.

(2) “State” and “United States”, in addition to their meanings under section 2101(36) and (44) of this title, include the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.

(3) “State recreational boating safety program” means education, assistance, and enforcement activities conducted for marine casualty prevention, reduction, and reporting for recreational boating.


(b) In chapters 33, 45, 51, 81, and 87 of this title, “Aleutian trade” means the transportation of cargo (including fishery related products) for hire on board a fish tender vessel to or from a place in Alaska West of 153 degrees west longitude and east of 172 degrees East longitude, if that place receives weekly common carrier service by water, to or from a place in the United States (except a place in Alaska).

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 505; Pub. L. 98–369, div. A, title X, §1011(a), July 18, 1984, 98 Stat. 1013; Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5102(b)(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1926; Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §602(a), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2990.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2102 46:1452(10)–(14)

Section 2102 contains a number of definitions that are limited to recreational vessels in Chapter 43 of Part B and the numbering of these vessels in Chapter 123 of Part H.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–595 designated existing provisions as subsec. (a) and added subsec. (b).

1986—Pub. L. 99–509 inserted reference to chapters 37 and 51.

1984—Par. (1). Pub. L. 98–369, §1011(a)(1), struck out “and facilities improvement” after “recreational boating safety”.

Par. (3). Pub. L. 98–369, §1011(a)(2), (3), redesignated par. (5) as (3) and struck out former par. (3) which defined a State recreational boating facilities improvement program.

Par. (4). Pub. L. 98–369, §1011(a)(2), struck out par. (4) which defined State recreational boating safety and facilities improvement program.

Par. (5). Pub. L. 98–369, §1011(a)(3), redesignated par. (5) as (3).

Effective Date of 1984 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 98–369 effective Oct. 1, 1984, to apply with respect to fiscal years beginning after Sept. 30, 1984, see section 1013 of Pub. L. 98–369, set out as a note under section 13101 of this title.

Termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands

For termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, see note set out preceding section 1681 of Title 48, Territories and Insular Possessions.

§2103. Superintendence of the merchant marine

The Secretary has general superintendence over the merchant marine of the United States and of merchant marine personnel insofar as the enforcement of this subtitle is concerned and insofar as those vessels and personnel are not subject, under other law, to the supervision of another official of the United States Government. In the interests of marine safety and seamen's welfare, the Secretary shall enforce this subtitle and shall carry out correctly and uniformly administer this subtitle. The Secretary may prescribe regulations to carry out the provisions of this subtitle.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 506; Pub. L. 99–307, §9, May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 447.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2103 46:2

46:372

46:689

Section 2103 provides the Secretary with the authority to superintend the merchant marine and those involved personnel insofar as the vessels and personnel are not subject, under other laws, to the supervision of another official. The Secretary has the duty to enforce the laws with respect to vessels and seamen and to carry out correctly and uniformly these laws and regulations. The term “superintendence” is used to indicate the Secretary's broad responsibility for overseeing maritime safety and seamen's welfare, including employment, shipping, navigation, and protection of the marine environment.

Amendments

1986—Pub. L. 99–307 substituted “subtitle. The Secretary may prescribe regulations to carry out the provisions of this subtitle” for “subtitle and regulations prescribed under this subtitle”.

§2104. Delegation

(a) The Secretary may delegate the duties and powers conferred by this subtitle to any officer, employee, or member of the Coast Guard, and may provide for the subdelegation of those duties and powers.

(b) When this subtitle authorizes an officer or employee of the Customs Service to act in place of a Coast Guard official, the Secretary may designate that officer or employee subject to the approval of the Secretary of the Treasury.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 506.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2104 46:65v(1)

46:382b

46:416

46:543

46:689

Section 2104 provides the Secretary with authority to delegate duties and powers to others. It also contains the authority to designate an officer or employee of the United States Customs Service to act in the place of a Coast Guard official.

§2105. Report

The Secretary shall provide for the investigation of the operation of this subtitle and of all laws related to marine safety, and shall require that a report be made to the Secretary annually about those matters that may require improvement or amendment.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 506.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2105 46:4

Section 2105 requires the Secretary to investigate the operation of this subtitle and all laws related to maritime safety and requires appropriate reports to ensure that the Secretary is attentive to all the shipping laws under the Secretary's superintendence.

§2106. Liability in rem

When a vessel is made liable in rem under this subtitle, the vessel may be libeled and proceeded against in a district court of the United States in which the vessel is found.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 506.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2106 46:170(14)
  46:216e(e)
  46:390d
  46:391a(14)(C)
  46:436
  46:462
  46:481(c)
  46:497
  46:526o
  46:672(j)
  46:1484(b)

Section 2106 provides that when a vessel is made liable in rem the vessel may be libeled and proceeded against in a United States district court.

Federal Rules of Civil Procedure

Admiralty and maritime rules of practice (which included libel procedures) were superseded, and civil and admiralty procedures in United States district courts were unified, effective July 1, 1966, see rule 1 and Supplemental Rules for Certain Admiralty and Maritime Claims, Title 28, Appendix, Judiciary and Judicial Procedure.

§2107. Civil penalty procedures

(a) After notice and an opportunity for a hearing, a person found by the Secretary to have violated this subtitle or a regulation prescribed under this subtitle for which a civil penalty is provided, is liable to the United States Government for the civil penalty provided. The amount of the civil penalty shall be assessed by the Secretary by written notice. In determining the amount of the penalty, the Secretary shall consider the nature, circumstances, extent, and gravity of the prohibited acts committed and, with respect to the violator, the degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability to pay, and other matters that justice requires.

(b) The Secretary may compromise, modify, or remit, with or without consideration, a civil penalty under this subtitle until the assessment is referred to the Attorney General.

(c) If a person fails to pay an assessment of a civil penalty after it has become final, the Secretary may refer the matter to the Attorney General for collection in an appropriate district court of the United States.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 506.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2107 33:364

46:7

46:65u

46:216e(d)

46:391a(14)

46:526

o

46:526p

46:1484(c)

Section 2107 provides for standard procedures for the handling of civil penalties for infractions of law or regulation. Some changes were made to increase some antiquated and inadequate penalties.

The assessment of civil penalties under this section should not require an “on the record” hearing within the meaning of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA). It is intended that these civil penalties be assessed in a fair manner. However, the Committee recognizes that statutes passed in the last decade have involved the Coast Guard in tens of thousands of civil penalty enforcement cases and that it is necessary that the penalties be assessed efficiently. The Coast Guard's procedural regulations for assessing civil penalties ensure that the essential elements of due process, notice, and opportunity to be heard, are provided to alleged violators (see 33 CFR Subpart 1.07). The more rigid and time-consuming procedures applicable to APA adjudications are unwarranted in the case of Coast Guard civil penalty assessment procedures and would seriously hamper the orderly enforcement of these administrative penalties.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 251a, 883–1, 883a of Appendix to this title.

§2108. Refund of penalties

The Secretary may refund or remit a civil penalty collected under this subtitle if—

(1) application has been made for refund or remission of the penalty within one year from the date of payment; and

(2) the Secretary finds that the penalty was unlawfully, improperly, or excessively imposed.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 507.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2108 46:8

Section 2108 provides for the refunding of civil penalties.

§2109. Public vessels

Except as otherwise provided, this subtitle does not apply to a public vessel of the United States. However, this subtitle does apply to a vessel (except a Coast Guard or a Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation vessel) owned or operated by the Department of Transportation or by any corporation organized or controlled by the Department.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 507; Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5102(b)(3), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1927.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2109 46:362

46:363

46:391a(4)

Section 2109 exempts public vessels from the applicability of the maritime safety and seamen's welfare laws of this subtitle although some public vessels are inspected under interagency voluntary agreements.

Amendments

1986—Pub. L. 99–509 substituted “Except as otherwise provided, this” for “This”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in title 50 App. section 1744.

§2110. Fees

(a)(1) Except as otherwise provided in this title, the Secretary shall establish a fee or charge for a service or thing of value provided by the Secretary under this subtitle, in accordance with section 9701 of title 31.

(2) The Secretary may not establish a fee or charge under paragraph (1) for inspection or examination of a non-self-propelled tank vessel under part B of this title 1 that is more than $500 annually. The Secretary may not establish a fee or charge under paragraph (1) for inspection or examination of a small passenger vessel under this title that is more than $300 annually for such vessels under 65 feet in length, or more than $600 annually for such vessels 65 feet in length and greater. The Secretary may not establish a fee or charge under paragraph (1) for inspection or examination under this title for any publicly-owned ferry.

(3) The Secretary may, by regulation, adjust a fee or charge collected under this subsection to accommodate changes in the cost of providing a specific service or thing of value, but the adjusted fee or charge may not exceed the total cost of providing the service or thing of value for which the fee or charge is collected, including the cost of collecting the fee or charge.

(4) The Secretary may not collect a fee or charge under this subsection that is in conflict with the international obligations of the United States.

(5) The Secretary may not collect a fee or charge under this subsection for any search or rescue service.

(b)(1) The Secretary shall establish a fee or charge as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, and collect it annually in fiscal years 1993 and 1994, from the owner or operator of each recreational vessel to which paragraph (2) of this subsection applies.

(2) The fee or charge established under paragraph (1) of this subsection is as follows:

(A) in fiscal year 1993—

(i) for vessels of more than 21 feet in length but less than 27 feet, not more than $35;

(ii) for vessels of at least 27 feet in length but less than 40 feet, not more than $50; and

(iii) for vessels of at least 40 feet in length, not more than $100.2


(B) in fiscal year 1994—

(i) for vessels of at least 37 feet in length but less than 40 feet, not more than $50; and

(ii) for vessels of at least 40 feet in length, not more than $100.


(3) The fee or charge established under this subsection applies only to vessels operated on the navigable waters of the United States where the Coast Guard has a presence.

(4) The fee or charge established under this subsection does not apply to a—

(A) public vessel; or

(B) vessel deemed to be a public vessel under section 827 of title 14.


(5) The Secretary shall provide to each person who pays a fee or charge under this subsection a separate document on which appears, in readily discernible print, only the following statement: “The fees 3 for which this document was provided was established under the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990. Persons paying this fee can expect no increase in the quantity, quality, or variety of services the person receives from the Coast Guard as a result of that payment.”

(c) In addition to the collection of fees and charges established under subsections (a) and (b), the Secretary may recover appropriate collection and enforcement costs associated with delinquent payments of the fees and charges.

(d)(1) The Secretary may employ any Federal, State, or local agency or instrumentality, or any private enterprise or business, to collect a fee or charge established under this section. A private enterprise or business selected by the Secretary to collect fees or charges—

(A) shall be subject to reasonable terms and conditions agreed to by the Secretary and the enterprise or business;

(B) shall provide appropriate accounting to the Secretary; and

(C) may not institute litigation as part of that collection.


(2) A Federal agency shall account for the agency's costs of collecting the fee or charge under this subsection as a reimbursable expense, and the costs shall be credited to the account from which expended.

(e) A person that violates this section by failing to pay a fee or charge established under this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000 for each violation.

(f) When requested by the Secretary, the Secretary of the Treasury shall deny the clearance required by section 4197 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (46 App. U.S.C. 91) to a vessel for which a fee or charge established under this section has not been paid until the fee or charge is paid or until a bond is posted for the payment.

(g) The Secretary may exempt a person from paying a fee or charge established under this section if the Secretary determines that it is in the public interest to do so.

(h) Fees and charges collected by the Secretary under this section shall be deposited in the general fund of the Treasury as offsetting receipts of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating and ascribed to Coast Guard activities.

(i) The collection of a fee or charge under this section does not alter or expand the functions, powers, responsibilities, or liability of the United States under any law for the performance of services or the provision of a thing of value for which a fee or charge is collected under this section.

(j) The Secretary may not establish or collect a fee or charge for the inspection under part B of this subtitle of training vessels operated by state 4 maritime academies.

(k) The Secretary may not plan, implement or finalize any regulation that would promulgate any new maritime user fee which was not implemented and collected prior to January 1, 1998, including a fee or charge for any domestic icebreaking service or any other navigational assistance service. This subsection expires on September 30, 2001.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 507; Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5102(b)(4), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1927; Pub. L. 100–710, title I, §104(a)(3), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4749; Pub. L. 101–508, title X, §10401(a), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388–397; Pub. L. 102–241, §53, Dec. 19, 1991, 105 Stat. 2232; Pub. L. 102–582, title V, §501(a), Nov. 2, 1992, 106 Stat. 4909; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5207, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5075; Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1112, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3970; Pub. L. 105–383, title II, §207, Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3416.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2110 46:331

Section 2110 prevents the assessment of user fees for certain maritime safety and seamen's welfare services unless otherwise provided for by law. These include:

Measurement of tonnage and certifying the same, except that the compensation and necessary travel and subsistence expenses of the officers so measuring or certifying such vessels at the request of the owners thereof at a place other than a port of entry or a customs station shall be paid by such owners; issuing of license or granting of certificate of registry, record, or enrollment, including all indorsements on the same and oath; indorsement of change of master; certifying and receiving manifest, including master's oath and permit; granting permit to vessels licensed for the fisheries to touch and trade; granting certificate of payment of tonnage dues; recording bill of sale, mortgage, hypothecation or conveyance, or the discharge of such mortgage or hypothecation; furnishing certificate of title; furnishing the crew list; certificate of protection to seamen; bill of health; shipping or discharging of seamen; apprenticing boys to the merchant service; inspecting, examining, and licensing steam vessels, including inspection certificate and copies thereof; and licensing of master, engineer, pilot, or mate of a vessel.

References in Text

The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990, referred to in subsec. (b)(5), is Pub. L. 101–508, Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Tables.

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 105–383 added subsec. (k).

1996—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 104–324, §1112, which directed amendment of section 10401(g) of Pub. L. 101–508 by inserting “The Secretary may not establish a fee or charge under paragraph (1) for inspection or examination of a small passenger vessel under this title that is more than $300 annually for such vessels under 65 feet in length, or more than $600 annually for such vessels 65 feet in length and greater. The Secretary may not establish a fee or charge under paragraph (1) for inspection or examination under this title for any publicly-owned ferry.” after “annually.”, was executed by making insertion in subsec. (a)(2) of this section to reflect the probable intent of Congress, because section 10401(a) of Pub. L. 101–508 amended this section generally, and section 10401 of Pub. L. 101–508 did not contain a subsec. (g).

1992—Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 102–582, §501(a)(1), substituted “1993 and 1994” for “1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, and 1995” and “to which paragraph (2) of this subsection applies” for “that is greater than 16 feet in length”.

Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 102–582, §501(a)(2), amended par. (2) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (2) read as follows: “The fee or charge established under paragraph (1) of this subsection is as follows:

“(A) for vessels greater than 16 feet in length but less than 20 feet, not more than $25;

“(B) for vessels of at least 20 feet in length but less than 27 feet, not more than $35;

“(C) for vessels of at least 27 feet in length but less than 40 feet, not more than $50; and

“(D) for vessels of at least 40 feet in length, not more than $100.”

Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 102–587 added subsec. (j).

1991—Subsec. (b)(5). Pub. L. 102–241 added par. (5).

1990—Pub. L. 101–508, as amended by Pub. L. 104–324, substituted “Fees” for “Fees prohibited” as section catchline and amended text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: “Fees may not be charged or collected by the Secretary for services provided for in this subtitle related to the engagement and discharge of seamen, the inspection and examination of vessels under part B of this subtitle, and the licensing of masters, mates, pilots, and engineers, except when specifically provided for in this subtitle.” See 1996 Amendment note above.

1988—Pub. L. 100–710 substituted “and the licensing of masters, mates, pilots, and engineers” for “the licensing of masters, mates, pilots, and engineers, and the documentation of vessels”.

1986—Pub. L. 99–509 substituted “examination of vessels under part B of this subtitle” for “examination of vessels” and struck out “measurement or” before “documentation”.

Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

Section 501(b) of Pub. L. 102–582 provided that: “The amendments made by this section [amending this section] are effective October 1, 1992.”

Effective Date of 1988 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 100–710 effective Jan. 1, 1989, with certain exceptions and qualifications, see section 107 of Pub. L. 100–710, set out as an Effective Date note under section 30101 of this title.

Acceptance of Evidence of Payment of Coast Guard Fees

Section 5214 of Pub. L. 102–587 provided that: “The Secretary of Transportation may not issue a citation for failure to pay a fee or charge established under section 2110 of title 46, United States Code, to an owner or operator of a recreational vessel who provides reasonable evidence of prior payment of the fee or charge to a Coast Guard boarding officer.”

1 So in original. Probably should be “subtitle”.

2 So in original. The period probably should be “; and”.

3 So in original. Probably should be “fee”.

4 So in original. Probably should be capitalized.

§2111. Pay for overtime services

(a) The Secretary may prescribe a reasonable rate of extra pay for overtime services of civilian officers and employees of the Coast Guard required to remain on duty between 5 p.m. and 8 a.m., or on Sundays or holidays, to perform services related to—

(1) the inspection of vessels or their equipment;

(2) the engagement and discharge of crews of vessels;

(3) the measurement of vessels; and

(4) the documentation of vessels.


(b) Except for Sundays and holidays, the overtime rate provided under subsection (a) of this section is one-half day's additional pay for each 2 hours of overtime (or part of 2 hours of at least one hour). The total extra pay may be not more than 2 and one-half days’ pay for any one period from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m.

(c) The overtime rate provided under subsection (a) of this section for Sundays and holidays is 2 additional days’ pay.

(d) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel shall pay the amount of the overtime pay provided under this section to the official designated by regulation. The official shall deposit the amount paid to the Treasury as miscellaneous receipts. Payment to the officer or employee entitled to the pay shall be made from the annual appropriations for salaries and expenses of the Coast Guard.

(e) The overtime pay provided under this section shall be paid if the authorized officers and employees have been ordered to report for duty and have reported, even if services requested were not performed.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 507.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2111 46:382b

Section 2111 provides for the payment of overtime rates for work performed by civilian officers and employees of the Coast Guard for certain specified activities.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 2112 of this title; title 5 section 5549.

§2112. Authority to change working hours

In a port at which the customary working hours begin before 8 a.m. or end after 5 p.m., the Secretary may regulate the working hours of the officers and employees referred to in section 2111 of this title so that those hours conform to the prevailing working hours of the port. However—

(1) the total period for which overtime pay may be required under section 2111 of this title may not be more than 15 hours between any 2 periods of ordinary working hours on other than Sundays and holidays;

(2) the length of the working day for the officers and employees involved may not be changed; and

(3) the rate of overtime pay may not be changed.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 508.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2112 46:382b

Section 2112 provides the Secretary with the authority to regulate the working hours of civilian officers and employees of the Coast Guard to conform with the prevailing working hours of a port.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in title 5 section 5549.

§2113. Authority to exempt certain vessels

If the Secretary decides that the application of a provision of part B, C, F, or G of this subtitle is not necessary in performing the mission of the vessel engaged in excursions or an oceanographic research vessel, or not necessary for the safe operation of certain vessels carrying passengers, the Secretary by regulation may—

(1) for a vessel, issue a special permit specifying the conditions of operation and equipment;

(2) exempt an oceanographic research vessel from that provision under conditions the Secretary may specify;

(3) establish different operating and equipment requirements for vessels defined in section 2101(42)(A) of this title;

(4) establish different structural fire protection, manning, operating, and equipment requirements for vessels of at least 100 gross tons but less than 300 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title carrying not more than 150 passengers on domestic voyages if the owner of the vessel—

(A) makes application for inspection to the Coast Guard within 6 months of the date of enactment of the Passenger Vessel Safety Act of 1993; and

(B) provides satisfactory documentation that the vessel was chartered at least once within the previous 12 months prior to the date of enactment of that Act; and


(5) establish different structural fire protection, manning, operating, and equipment requirements for former public vessels of the United States of at least 100 gross tons but less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title, carrying not more than 150 passengers on domestic voyages, if the owner of the vessel—

(A) makes application for inspection to the Coast Guard within 6 months of the date of enactment of the Passenger Vessel Safety Act of 1993; and

(B) provides satisfactory documentation that the vessel was chartered at least once within the previous 12 months prior to the date of enactment of that Act.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 508; Pub. L. 103–206, title V, §511(a), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2441; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §710, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3935.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2113 46:445

46:453

Section 2113 provides the Secretary with the authority to exempt certain vessels from the inspection and manning requirements of law when vessels are engaged in excursions or oceanographic research. This is the authority of the issuance of excursion permits when special circumstances justify the waiver of certain maritime safety and seamen's welfare laws for a short period of time. It also contains flexible exemption authority for regulation of oceanographic research vessels.

References in Text

The date of enactment of the Passenger Vessel Safety Act of 1993, referred to in pars. (4) and (5), is the date of the enactment of Pub. L. 103–206, which was approved Dec. 20, 1993.

Amendments

1996—Par. (4). Pub. L. 104–324, §710(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “less than 300 gross tons”.

Par. (5). Pub. L. 104–324, §710(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “less than 500 gross tons”.

1993—Pub. L. 103–206 amended section catchline and text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: “If the Secretary decides that the application of a provision of part B or F of this subtitle is not necessary in performing the mission of a vessel engaged in excursions or an oceanographic research vessel, the Secretary by regulation may—

“(1) for an excursion vessel, issue a special permit specifying the conditions of operation and equipment; and

“(2) exempt the oceanographic research vessel from that provision under conditions the Secretary may specify.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3306 of this title.

§2114. Protection of seamen against discrimination

(a) An owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel may not discharge or in any manner discriminate against a seaman because the seaman in good faith has reported or is about to report to the Coast Guard that the seaman believes that a violation of this subtitle, or a regulation issued under this subtitle, has occurred.

(b) A seaman discharged or otherwise discriminated against in violation of this section may bring an action in an appropriate district court of the United States. In that action, the court may order any appropriate relief, including—

(1) restraining violations of this section; and

(2) reinstatement to the seaman's former position with back pay.

(Added Pub. L. 98–557, §13(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2863.)

§2115. Civil penalty to enforce alcohol and dangerous drug testing

Any person who fails to implement or conduct, or who otherwise fails to comply with the requirements prescribed by the Secretary for, chemical testing for dangerous drugs or for evidence of alcohol use, as prescribed under this subtitle or a regulation prescribed by the Secretary to carry out the provisions of this subtitle, is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000 for each violation. Each day of a continuing violation shall constitute a separate violation.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §303(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3917; amended Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §304(b), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3419.)

Amendments

1998—Pub. L. 105–383 substituted “$5,000” for “$1,000”.

CHAPTER 23—OPERATION OF VESSELS GENERALLY

Sec.
2301.
Application.
2302.
Penalties for negligent operations and interfering with safe operation.
2303.
Duties related to marine casualty assistance and information.
2303a.
Post serious marine casualty alcohol testing.
2304.
Duty to provide assistance at sea.
2305.
Injunctions.
2306.
Vessel reporting requirements.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 23 lists requirements that relate to the general operation of all vessels. These include penalties and injunctive relief for negligent operation of a vessel. It also provides penalties for failure to render assistance.

Amendments

1998—Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §§302(b), 304(d)(2), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3418, 3420, added item 2302, struck out former item 2302 “Penalties for negligent operations”, and added item 2303a.

1984—Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §212(a)(1), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2305, added item 2306.

§2301. Application

Except as provided in section 2306 of this title, this chapter applies to a vessel operated on waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States (including the territorial sea of the United States as described in Presidential Proclamation No. 5928 of December 27, 1988) and, for a vessel owned in the United States, on the high seas.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 508; Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §212(a)(2), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2305; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §301(b)(2), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3417.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2301 46:480

Section 2301 provides that this chapter is applicable to all vessels, including foreign flag vessels, when operating on waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. Any vessel owned in the United States while operating on the high seas would be included. By ownership the Committee means those vessels that are documented or numbered under United States laws and those other vessels that are neither documented or numbered but are of national origin and are not documented under the laws of a foreign nation. This chapter is applicable to a foreign flag vessel that is in innocent passage through territorial waters of the United States, presently 3 miles seaward, whether or not it is bound to or from a port subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

References in Text

Presidential Proclamation No. 5928, referred to in text, is set out under section 1331 of Title 43, Public Lands.

Amendments

1998—Pub. L. 105–383 inserted “(including the territorial sea of the United States as described in Presidential Proclamation No. 5928 of December 27, 1988)” after “of the United States”.

1984—Pub. L. 98–498 substituted “Except as provided in section 2306 of this title, this chapter” for “This chapter”.

Effective Date of 1984 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 98–498 effective 180 days after Oct. 19, 1984, see section 214 of Pub. L. 98–498, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2306 of this title.

§2302. Penalties for negligent operations and interfering with safe operation

(a) A person operating a vessel in a negligent manner or interfering with the safe operation of a vessel, so as to endanger the life, limb, or property of a person is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $1,000.

(b) A person operating a vessel in a grossly negligent manner that endangers the life, limb, or property of a person commits a class A misdemeanor.

(c) An individual who is under the influence of alcohol, or a dangerous drug in violation of a law of the United States when operating a vessel, as determined under standards prescribed by the Secretary by regulation—

(1) is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000; or

(2) commits a class A misdemeanor.


(d) For a penalty imposed under this section, the vessel also is liable in rem unless the vessel is—

(1) owned by a State or a political subdivision of a State;

(2) operated principally for governmental purposes; and

(3) identified clearly as a vessel of that State or subdivision.


(e)(1) A vessel may not transport Government-impelled cargoes if—

(A) the vessel has been detained and determined to be substandard by the Secretary for violation of an international safety convention to which the United States is a party, and the Secretary has published notice of that detention and determination in an electronic form, including the name of the owner of the vessel; or

(B) the operator of the vessel has on more than one occasion had a vessel detained and determined to be substandard by the Secretary for violation of an international safety convention to which the United States is a party, and the Secretary has published notice of that detention and determination in an electronic form, including the name of the owner of the vessel.


(2) The prohibition in paragraph (1) expires for a vessel on the earlier of—

(A) 1 year after the date of the publication in electronic form on which the prohibition is based; or

(B) any date on which the owner or operator of the vessel prevails in an appeal of the violation of the relevant international convention on which the detention is based.


(3) As used in this subsection, the term “Government-impelled cargo” means cargo for which a Federal agency contracts directly for shipping by water or for which (or the freight of which) a Federal agency provides financing, including financing by grant, loan, or loan guarantee, resulting in shipment of the cargo by water.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 508; Pub. L. 98–557, §7(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2862; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §§4105(b)(2), 4302(a), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 513, 537; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5102, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5071; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §§302(a), 304(c), title IV, §408(a), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3417, 3419, 3430.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2302(a) 46:1461(d)

46:1484(b)

2302(b) 46:1461(d)

46:1483

2302(c) 46:1484(b)

Section 2302 states that the negligent operation of a vessel is prohibited. These acts are subject to civil and criminal penalties and the involved vessel is subject to an in rem action. The negligent operation provisions have their genesis in the Act of April 25, 1940, 54 Stat. 167, when Congress prescribed that no person shall operate any motorboat or any vessel in a reckless or negligent manner. This provision was directed at all vessels and not those solely engaged in recreational boating. When the Federal Boat Safety Act of 1971, P.L. 92–75, 85 Stat. 217 (46 U.S.C. 1461) was enacted it adopted the reckless or negligent operation provisions of the 1940 Act. It adopted for the first time a provision for assessing civil penalties in addition to criminal penalties. It dropped the word “reckless” because of redundancy. It also combined the two classes of vessels; “any motorboat or any vessel” into one class by using the word “vessel” and defined vessel as including every description of watercraft.

Amendments

1998—Pub. L. 105–383, §302(a)(1), substituted “Penalties for negligent operations and interfering with safe operation” for “Penalties for negligent operations” in section catchline.

Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 105–383, §302(a)(2), substituted “or interfering with the safe operation of a vessel, so as to endanger” for “that endangers”.

Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 105–383, §304(c), substituted “$5,000; or” for “$1,000 for a first violation and not more than $5,000 for a subsequent violation; or”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 105–383, §408(a), added subsec. (e).

1992—Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 102–587 substituted “$1,000 for a first violation and not more than $5,000 for a subsequent violation” for “$1,000”.

1990—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(a)(1), substituted “commits a class A misdemeanor” for “shall be fined not more than $5,000, imprisoned for not more than one year, or both”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 101–380, §§4105(b)(2), 4302(a)(2)(A), substituted “under the influence of alcohol, or a dangerous drug in violation of a law of the United States” for “intoxicated” and struck out “, shall be” after “by the Secretary by regulation”.

Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(a)(2)(B), substituted “is liable” for “liable”.

Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(a)(2)(C), amended par. (2) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (2) read as follows: “fined not more than $5,000, imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.”

1984—Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 98–557 added subsec. (c) and redesignated former subsec. (c) as (d).

Effective Date of 1998 Amendment

Pub. L. 105–383, title IV, §408(b), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3431, provided that: “The amendment made by subsection (a) [amending this section] takes effect January 1, 1999.”

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§2303. Duties related to marine casualty assistance and information

(a) The master or individual in charge of a vessel involved in a marine casualty shall—

(1) render necessary assistance to each individual affected to save that affected individual from danger caused by the marine casualty, so far as the master or individual in charge can do so without serious danger to the master's or individual's vessel or to individuals on board; and

(2) give the master's or individual's name and address and identification of the vessel to the master or individual in charge of any other vessel involved in the casualty, to any individual injured, and to the owner of any property damaged.


(b) An individual violating this section or a regulation prescribed under this section shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned for not more than 2 years. The vessel also is liable in rem to the United States Government for the fine.

(c) An individual complying with subsection (a) of this section or gratuitously and in good faith rendering assistance at the scene of a marine casualty without objection by an individual assisted, is not liable for damages as a result of rendering assistance or for an act or omission in providing or arranging salvage, towage, medical treatment, or other assistance when the individual acts as an ordinary, reasonable, and prudent individual would have acted under the circumstances.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 509.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2303(a) 33:367

46:1465(a)

2303(b) 33:368
2303(c) 46:1465(b)

Section 2303 requires a master or anyone in charge of a vessel to provide assistance and render aid to those involved in a marine casualty and to exchange information in a manner similar to automobile accident cases. It also includes a “Good Samaritan” clause that exonerates anyone from liability when rendering assistance in an ordinary, reasonable, or prudent manner.

§2303a. Post serious marine casualty alcohol testing

(a) The Secretary shall establish procedures to ensure that after a serious marine casualty occurs, alcohol testing of crew members or other persons responsible for the operation or other safety-sensitive functions of the vessel or vessels involved in such casualty is conducted no later than 2 hours after the casualty occurs, unless such testing cannot be completed within that time due to safety concerns directly related to the casualty.

(b) The procedures in subsection (a) shall require that if alcohol testing cannot be completed within 2 hours of the occurrence of the casualty, such testing shall be conducted as soon thereafter as the safety concerns in subsection (a) have been adequately addressed to permit such testing, except that such testing may not be required more than 8 hours after the casualty occurs.

(Added Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §304(d)(1), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3419.)

§2304. Duty to provide assistance at sea

(a) A master or individual in charge of a vessel shall render assistance to any individual found at sea in danger of being lost, so far as the master or individual in charge can do so without serious danger to the master's or individual's vessel or individuals on board.

(b) A master or individual violating this section shall be fined not more than $1,000, imprisoned for not more than 2 years, or both.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 509.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2304 46:728

Section 2304 requires a master or individual in charge of a vessel to render assistance to those in danger at sea if able to do so without seriously endangering the vessel or crew.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3304 of this title; section 731 of Appendix to this title.

§2305. Injunctions

(a) The district courts of the United States have jurisdiction to enjoin the negligent operation of vessels prohibited by this chapter on the petition of the Attorney General for the United States Government.

(b) When practicable, the Secretary shall—

(1) give notice to any person against whom an action for injunctive relief is considered under this section an opportunity to present that person's views; and

(2) except for a knowing and willful violation, give the person a reasonable opportunity to achieve compliance.


(c) The failure to give notice and opportunity to present views under subsection (b) of this section does not preclude the court from granting appropriate relief.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 509.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
2305 46:1485

Section 2305 provides injunctive authority to enjoin the negligent operation of vessels. This authority can also be used to enjoin the operation of foreign or domestic vessels on our waters when they are unsuitable for the voyage intended.

§2306. Vessel reporting requirements

(a)(1) An owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent of a vessel of the United States, having reason to believe (because of lack of communication with or nonappearance of a vessel or any other incident) that the vessel may have been lost or imperiled, immediately shall—

(A) notify the Coast Guard; and

(B) use all available means to determine the status of the vessel.


(2) When more than 48 hours have passed since the owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent of a vessel required to report to the United States Flag Merchant Vessel Location Filing System under authority of section 212(A) of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936 (46 App. U.S.C. 1122a), has received a communication from the vessel, the owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent immediately shall—

(A) notify the Coast Guard; and

(B) use all available means to determine the status of the vessel.


(3) A person notifying the Coast Guard under paragraph (1) or (2) of this subsection shall provide the name and identification number of the vessel, the names of individuals on board, and other information that may be requested by the Coast Guard. The owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent also shall submit written confirmation to the Coast Guard within 24 hours after nonwritten notification to the Coast Guard under those paragraphs.

(4) An owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent violating this subsection is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000 for each day during which the violation occurs.

(b)(1) The master of a vessel of the United States required to report to the System shall report to the owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent at least once every 48 hours.

(2) A master violating this subsection is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $1,000 for each day during which the violation occurs.

(c) The Secretary may prescribe regulations to carry out this section.

(Added Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §212(a)(3), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2305.)

Effective Date

Section 214 of Pub. L. 98–498 provided that: “Sections 211(a) and 212 of this subtitle [enacting this section and amending sections 2302, 3309, 6101, and 6103 of this title] are effective one hundred and eighty days after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 19, 1984].”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 2301 of this title.

Part B—Inspection and Regulation of Vessels

Historical and Revision Notes

Part B provides authority and responsibility for the inspection and regulation of vessels by the Coast Guard. This part specifies those vessels subject to inspection, those that are specifically exempt from inspection, and related inspection requirements and procedures. Due to the need for special requirements for the inspection and regulation of passenger vessels and those vessels carrying liquid bulk dangerous cargoes separate chapters have been developed. Additional chapters provide for recreational vessels and those other vessels that are regulated but are not subject to inspection and certification by the Coast Guard. It should also be noted that the United States is signatory to a number of international treaties on maritime safety and seamen's welfare, such as the various Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) treaties, and that their provisions and requirements are part of United States maritime law and in many cases are quite extensive.

Part Referred to in Other Sections

This part is referred to in sections 2110, 2113, 7111, 7113, 8101, 8104, 8303, 8501, 8502, 14305 of this title; title 50 App. section 1744.

CHAPTER 31—GENERAL

Sec.
3101.
Authority to suspend inspection.
3102.
Immersion suits.
3103.
Use of reports, documents, and records.

        

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §603(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3930, added item 3103.

1988—Pub. L. 100–424, §8(a)(3), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1593, substituted “Immersion” for “Exposure” in item 3102.

1985—Pub. L. 99–36, §2, May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68, repealed section 22 of Pub. L. 98–557 and the amendments made by that section, which added first identical item 3102, effective Nov. 8, 1984, thereby leaving Pub. L. 98–623 as the sole authority for the addition of item 3102. See 1984 Amendment note below.

1984—Pub. L. 98–557, §22(a)(2), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2871, and Pub. L. 98–623, title VII, §701(a)(2), Nov. 8, 1984, 98 Stat. 3413, added identical item 3102. See 1985 Amendment note above.

§3101. Authority to suspend inspection

When the President decides that the needs of foreign commerce require, the President may suspend a provision of this part for a foreign-built vessel registered as a vessel of the United States on conditions the President may specify.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 510.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3101 46:82

Section 3101 provides the President with the authority to suspend the inspection laws for a foreign-built reflagged U.S. vessel when the needs of foreign commerce require this. For example, if a foreign-flag vessel is reflagged in the U.S. but does not meet the specific Coast Guard inspection requirements, the President could suspend these requirements.

Effective Date

Section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 599, provided that: “Part B [chapters 31 to 43] of subtitle II and sections 7306 (related to able seaman sail) and 7311 of title 46 (as enacted by section 1 of this Act) take effect April 15, 1984, or when regulations for sailing school vessels under part B are effective, whichever is earlier.” [Part B of subtitle II and sections 7306 (related to able seaman sail) and 7311 of title 46 effective Apr. 15, 1984, in absence of regulations for sailing school vessels under part B on that date.]

Delegation of Functions

For delegation to Secretary of the Treasury of authority vested in President by this section, see Ex. Ord. No. 10289, Sept. 17, 1951, 16 F.R. 9499, as amended, set out as a note under section 301 of Title 3, The President.

§3102. Immersion suits

(a) The Secretary shall by regulation require immersion suits on vessels designated by the Secretary that operate in the Atlantic Ocean north of 32 degrees North latitude or south of 32 degrees South latitude and in all other waters north of 35 degrees North latitude or south of 35 degrees South latitude. The Secretary may not exclude a vessel from designation under this section only because that vessel carries other lifesaving equipment.

(b) The Secretary shall establish standards for an immersion suit required by this section, including standards to guarantee adequate thermal protection, buoyance, and flotation stability.

(c)(1) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel violating this section or a regulation prescribed under this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(2) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel violating this section or a regulation prescribed under this section may be fined not more than $25,000, imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both.

(Added Pub. L. 98–557, §22(a)(1), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2871; amended Pub. L. 98–623, title VII, §701(a)(1), Nov. 8, 1984, 98 Stat. 3413; Pub. L. 99–36, §2, May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68; Pub. L. 100–424, §8(a)(1), (2), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1592, 1593.)

Codification

Pub. L. 98–557 and Pub. L. 98–623 enacted identical section 3102 of this title. Section 22 of Pub. L. 98–557, which enacted first identical section 3102 of this title, was repealed by section 2 of Pub. L. 99–36, set out below as a Repeal of Duplicate Section note.

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–424 substituted “Immersion” for “Exposure” in section catchline, and “immersion” for “exposure” in subsecs. (a) and (b).

Repeal of Duplicate Section 3102; References Thereto and Regulations and Actions Thereunder

Section 2 of Pub. L. 99–36 provided that: “Section 22 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1984 (Public Law 98–557; 98 Stat. 2871), and the amendments made by such section [enacting first identical section 3102 of this title and provisions set out as a note under this section and amending the analysis of chapter 31 of this title], are repealed as of November 8, 1984. Regulations prescribed and actions taken under, and references to, such section and the amendments made by such section are deemed to be regulations prescribed and actions taken under, and references to, section 701 of the Act of November 8, 1984 (Public Law 98–623; 98 Stat. 3413), and the amendments made by such section 701 [enacting second identical section 3102 of this title and provisions set out as a note under this section and amending the analysis of chapter 31 of this title].”

Regulations

Section 701(b), (c) of title VII of Pub. L. 98–623 provided:

“(b) Section 3102 of title 46, United States Code (as added by subsection (a) of this section), does not limit the authority of the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating to prescribe regulations requiring exposure suits on vessels not required by section 3102 to have exposure suits.

“(c) The regulations prescribed under section 3102 of title 46, United States Code (as added by subsection (a) of this section), shall be effective not later than 60 days after the date of enactment of this title [Nov. 8, 1984].” [Regulations effective Dec. 30, 1984, see 49 F.R. 50722, Dec. 31, 1984.]

Similar provisions were contained in section 22(b), (c) of Pub. L. 98–557, which was repealed by section 2 of Pub. L. 99–36, set out above as a Repeal of Duplicate Section note.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4502 of this title.

§3103. Use of reports, documents, and records

The Secretary may rely, as evidence of compliance with this subtitle, on—

(1) reports, documents, and records of other persons who have been determined by the Secretary to be reliable; and

(2) other methods the Secretary has determined to be reliable.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §603(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3930.)

CHAPTER 32—MANAGEMENT OF VESSELS

Sec.
3201.
Definitions.
3202.
Application.
3203.
Safety management system.
3204.
Implementation of safety management system.
3205.
Certification.

        

§3201. Definitions

In this chapter—

(1) “International Safety Management Code” has the same meaning given that term in chapter IX of the Annex to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974;

(2) “responsible person” means—

(A) the owner of a vessel to which this chapter applies; or

(B) any other person that has—

(i) assumed the responsibility for operation of a vessel to which this chapter applies from the owner; and

(ii) agreed to assume with respect to the vessel responsibility for complying with all the requirements of this chapter and the regulations prescribed under this chapter.


(3) “vessel engaged on a foreign voyage” means a vessel to which this chapter applies—

(A) arriving at a place under the jurisdiction of the United States from a place in a foreign country;

(B) making a voyage between places outside the United States; or

(C) departing from a place under the jurisdiction of the United States for a place in a foreign country.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3928.)

Safety Management Code Report and Policy

Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §306, Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3420, provided that:

“(a) Report on Implementation and Enforcement of the International Safety Management Code.—

“(1) The Secretary of Transportation (in this section referred to as the ‘Secretary’) shall conduct a study—

“(A) reporting on the status of implementation of the International Safety Management Code (hereafter referred to in this section as ‘Code’);

“(B) detailing enforcement actions involving the Code, including the role documents and reports produced pursuant to the Code play in such enforcement actions;

“(C) evaluating the effects the Code has had on marine safety and environmental protection, and identifying actions to further promote marine safety and environmental protection through the Code;

“(D) identifying actions to achieve full compliance with and effective implementation of the Code; and

“(E) evaluating the effectiveness of internal reporting and auditing under the Code, and recommending actions to ensure the accuracy and candidness of such reporting and auditing.

These recommended actions may include proposed limits on the use in legal proceedings of documents produced pursuant to the Code.

“(2) The Secretary shall provide opportunity for the public to participate in and comment on the study conducted under paragraph (1).

“(3) Not later than 18 months after the date of the enactment of this Act [Nov. 13, 1998], the Secretary shall submit to the Congress a report on the results of the study conducted under paragraph (1).

“(b) Policy.—

“(1) Not later than 9 months after submission of the report in subsection (a)(3), the Secretary shall develop a policy to achieve full compliance with and effective implementation of the Code. The policy may include—

“(A) enforcement penalty reductions and waivers, limits on the use in legal proceedings of documents produced pursuant to the Code, or other incentives to ensure accurate and candid reporting and auditing;

“(B) any other measures to achieve full compliance with and effective implementation of the Code; and

“(C) if appropriate, recommendations to Congress for any legislation necessary to implement one or more elements of the policy.

“(2) The Secretary shall provide opportunity for the public to participate in the development of the policy in paragraph (1).

“(3) Upon completion of the policy in paragraph (1), the Secretary shall publish the policy in the Federal Register and provide opportunity for public comment on the policy.”

Vessel Management Methods Study

Section 602(c) of Pub. L. 104–324 provided that:

“(1) In general.—The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall conduct, in cooperation with the owners, charterers, and managing operators of vessels documented under chapter 121 of title 46, United States Code, and other interested persons, a study of the methods that may be used to implement and enforce the International Management Code for the Safe Operation of Ships and for Pollution Prevention under chapter IX of the Annex to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974.

“(2) Report.—The Secretary shall submit to the Congress a report of the results of the study required under paragraph (1) before the earlier of—

“(A) the date that final regulations are prescribed under section 3203 of title 46, United States Code (as enacted by subsection (a)[)]; or

“(B) the date that is 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 19, 1996].”

International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea

For International Conventions for the Safety of Life at Sea to which the United States has been a party, see section 1602 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters, and notes thereunder.

§3202. Application

(a) Mandatory Application.—This chapter applies to the following vessels engaged on a foreign voyage:

(1) Beginning July 1, 1998—

(A) a vessel transporting more than 12 passengers described in section 2101(21)(A) of this title; and

(B) a tanker, bulk freight vessel, or high-speed freight vessel, of at least 500 gross tons.


(2) Beginning July 1, 2002, a freight vessel and a self-propelled mobile offshore drilling unit of at least 500 gross tons.


(b) Voluntary Application.—This chapter applies to a vessel not described in subsection (a) of this section if the owner of the vessel requests the Secretary to apply this chapter to the vessel.

(c) Exception.—Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, this chapter does not apply to—

(1) a barge;

(2) a recreational vessel not engaged in commercial service;

(3) a fishing vessel;

(4) a vessel operating on the Great Lakes or its tributary and connecting waters; or

(5) a public vessel.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3928.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 3204, 3205 of this title.

§3203. Safety management system

(a) In General.—The Secretary shall prescribe regulations which establish a safety management system for responsible persons and vessels to which this chapter applies, including—

(1) a safety and environmental protection policy;

(2) instructions and procedures to ensure safe operation of those vessels and protection of the environment in compliance with international and United States law;

(3) defined levels of authority and lines of communications between, and among, personnel on shore and on the vessel;

(4) procedures for reporting accidents and nonconformities with this chapter;

(5) procedures for preparing for and responding to emergency situations; and

(6) procedures for internal audits and management reviews of the system.


(b) Compliance With Code.—Regulations prescribed under this section shall be consistent with the International Safety Management Code with respect to vessels engaged on a foreign voyage.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3928.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3204 of this title.

§3204. Implementation of safety management system

(a) Safety Management Plan.—Each responsible person shall establish and submit to the Secretary for approval a safety management plan describing how that person and vessels of the person to which this chapter applies will comply with the regulations prescribed under section 3203(a) of this title.

(b) Approval.—Upon receipt of a safety management plan submitted under subsection (a), the Secretary shall review the plan and approve it if the Secretary determines that it is consistent with and will assist in implementing the safety management system established under section 3203.

(c) Prohibition on Vessel Operation.—A vessel to which this chapter applies under section 3202(a) may not be operated without having on board a Safety Management Certificate and a copy of a Document of Compliance issued for the vessel under section 3205 of this title.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3929.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3205 of this title.

§3205. Certification

(a) Issuance of Certificate and Document.—After verifying that the responsible person for a vessel to which this chapter applies and the vessel comply with the applicable requirements under this chapter, the Secretary shall issue for the vessel, on request of the responsible person, a Safety Management Certificate and a Document of Compliance.

(b) Maintenance of Certificate and Document.—A Safety Management Certificate and a Document of Compliance issued for a vessel under this section shall be maintained by the responsible person for the vessel as required by the Secretary.

(c) Verification of Compliance.—The Secretary shall—

(1) periodically review whether a responsible person having a safety management plan approved under section 3204(b) and each vessel to which the plan applies is complying with the plan; and

(2) revoke the Secretary's approval of the plan and each Safety Management Certificate and Document of Compliance issued to the person for a vessel to which the plan applies, if the Secretary determines that the person or a vessel to which the plan applies has not complied with the plan.


(d) Enforcement.—At the request of the Secretary, the Secretary of the Treasury shall withhold or revoke the clearance required by section 4197 of the Revised Statutes (46 U.S.C. App. 91) of a vessel that is subject to this chapter under section 3202(a) of this title or to the International Safety Management Code, if the vessel does not have on board a Safety Management Certificate and a copy of a Document of Compliance for the vessel. Clearance may be granted on filing a bond or other surety satisfactory to the Secretary.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3929.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3204 of this title.

CHAPTER 33—INSPECTION GENERALLY

Sec.
3301.
Vessels subject to inspection.
3302.
Exemptions.
3303.
Reciprocity for foreign vessels.
3304.
Transporting individuals in addition to crew.
3305.
Scope and standards of inspection.
3306.
Regulations.
3307.
Frequency of inspection.
3308.
Examinations.
3309.
Certificate of inspection.
3310.
Records of certification.
3311.
Certificate of inspection required.
3312.
Display of certificate of inspection.
3313.
Compliance with certificate of inspection.
3314.
Expiration of certificate of inspection.
3315.
Disclosure of defects and protection of informants.
3316.
Classification societies.
3317.
Fees.
3318.
Penalties.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 33 consolidates the laws governing the inspection and certification of vessels by the Coast Guard that have developed over a period in excess of 140 years. The original laws were directed to the safety of the relatively new and potentially dangerous steam vessel. The demand for Federal remedial legislation began during the early 1800's after frequent and disastrous explosions of steam boilers on passenger vessels. This directly led to the first maritime safety laws in 1838 that required periodic inspection and certification of vessels engaged in the transportation of passengers and freight on the waters of the United States. This was followed by a more extensive steamboat inspection law in 1852 which adopted for the first time the principle of licensing for river pilots and engineers. It also created a new Federal maritime safety inspection service called the Federal Inspection Service that eventually became the Bureau of Marine Inspection and Navigation, whose duties were temporarily assumed in 1941 and permanently assumed in 1946 by the United States Coast Guard.

In 1864 the principal inspection and licensing provisions of the 1852 act were made applicable to ferries, towing vessels, and canal boats. However, steamboat explosions continued with high loss of life and property. One of the greatest of all disasters, the destruction of the passenger vessel Sultana by explosion and fire with a loss of life estimated at more than 1500 lives in April 1865, led to renewed legislation efforts. In 1871 this culminated with legislation that combined a number of new requirements into a coherent and unified body of maritime safety laws. At the time of the adoption of the Revised Statutes in 1874, a maritime safety code was well established for vessels propelled in whole or in part by steam.

In the more than 100 years since then, as the public recognized the need for vessel safety legislation, primarily as the result of maritime disasters, other classes of vessels were subjected to Federal inspection or regulatory control. These included vessels propelled by gas, fluid, naphtha, or electric motors in 1897; sail vessels and barges carrying passengers for hire in 1898; seagoing barges in 1908; motorboats in 1910; steam vessels owned by the Department of Commerce in 1919; seagoing vessels of 300 gross tons and over on June 20, 1936; all tank vessels carrying flammable or combustible liquid cargo in bulk regardless of size or means of propulsion of June 23, 1936; motorboats again in 1940; all vessels carrying more than six passengers in 1956; tank vessels again in 1978; and offshore supply vessels in 1980. There was also considerable legislation that amended or supplemented these primary maritime safety laws.

The net result has been a patchwork quilt of categories and classifications that requires a tabulation of more than seventy different classes of inspected vessels. This revision gathers into one section of the law all classes of vessels that are subject to inspection and certification without changing the application of present law as to any one class of vessel. The revision does not alter the application of the present law so as to expand inspection requirements to any vessel presently not subject to inspection nor to remove from inspection any vessel that is presently subject to inspection.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §607(b)(2), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3932, substituted “Classification societies” for “United States classification societies” in item 3316.

1986—Pub. L. 99–307, §1(5)(B), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445, substituted “Transporting” for “Carrying” in item 3304.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in sections 2102, 8101, 8301 of this title; title 40 section 484d.

§3301. Vessels subject to inspection

The following categories of vessels are subject to inspection under this part:

(1) freight vessels.

(2) nautical school vessels.

(3) offshore supply vessels.

(4) passenger vessels.

(5) sailing school vessels.

(6) seagoing barges.

(7) seagoing motor vessels.

(8) small passenger vessels.

(9) steam vessels.

(10) tank vessels.

(11) fish processing vessels.

(12) fish tender vessels.

(13) Great Lakes barges.

(14) oil spill response vessels.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 510; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(2), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 445; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5208(b), Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5076; Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1104(g), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3967.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3301(1) 46:391

46:404

3301(2) 46:1295f(c)
3301(3) 46:404–1
3301(4) 46:390a

46:391

3301(5) 46:390a
3301(6) 46:395
3301(7) 46:367
3301(8) 46:390a
3301(9) 46:362

46:391

46:405

3301(10) 46:391a

Section 3301 lists all classes of vessels that are subject to inspection and certification by the Coast Guard. This section represents one of the sought-after advantages of the bill to simplify access to the provisions of law governing the regulation of vessels. Under the present law, a vessel's inspection status must be determined by examining a table appearing at section 2.01–7A of title 46, Code of Federal Regulations that divides all vessels into more than 70 separate classes.

It is important to note that while the classes of vessels are now limited to ten, there is no prohibition against developing regulations to meet the special needs of various size vessels within any one category. For example, it is expected that the Coast Guard will continue the practice of establishing standards for freight vessels of not more than 100 gross tons and other standards for larger freight vessels.

It should also be noted that a particular vessel can, when engaged in various types of operations, be subject to varying inspection laws. For example, an offshore supply vessel could be classed as a small passenger vessel or a passenger vessel when it operates as a crew boat carrying individuals other than those defined in section 2101(21). If the offshore supply vessel is 500 gross tons and over it would then be subject to inspection as a seagoing motor vessel, a freight vessel, or a passenger vessel.

Amendments

1996—Par. (14). Pub. L. 104–324 added par. (14).

1992—Par. (13). Pub. L. 102–587 added par. (13).

1984—Pars. (11), (12). Pub. L. 98–364 added pars. (11) and (12).

Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 102–587 effective Nov. 4, 1992, for Great Lakes barges placed in operation after Nov. 4, 1992, and effective one year after Nov. 4, 1992, for Great Lakes barges in operation on Nov. 4, 1992, with provision for interim safety requirements, see section 5208(c), (d) of Pub. L. 102–587, set out as a note under section 2101 of this title.

Effective Date

Chapter effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

Short Title of 1984 Amendment

Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §210, Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2303, provided that: “This subtitle [subtitle A (§§210–214) of title II of Pub. L. 98–498, enacting section 2306 of this title, amending sections 2301, 3309, 3311, 3318, 6101, and 6103 of this title and section 183 of the Appendix to this title, and enacting provisions set out as notes under section 2306 of this title and section 183 of the Appendix to this title] may be cited as the ‘Maritime Safety Act of 1984’.”

Pilot Program

Pub. L. 105–383, title IV, §412(b), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3432, provided that:

“(1) In general.—The Secretary may establish a pilot program to exempt a vessel of at least 300 gross tons as measured under chapter 143 or chapter 145 of title 46, United States Code, from the requirement to be inspected under section 3301(7) of title 46, United States Code, as a seagoing motor vessel, if—

“(A) the vessel does not carry any cargo or passengers for hire;

“(B) the vessel does not engage in commercial service, commercial fisheries, or oceanographic research; and

“(C) the vessel does not engage in towing.

“(2) Expiration of authority.—The authority to grant the exemptions under this subsection expires 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act [Nov. 13, 1998]. Any specific exemptions granted under this subsection shall nonetheless remain in effect.”

Small Passenger Vessel Pilot Inspection Program With State of Minnesota

Section 1122 of Pub. L. 104–324 provided that:

“(a) In General.—The Secretary may enter into an agreement with the State under which the State may inspect small passenger vessels operating in waters of that State designated by the Secretary, if—

“(1) the State plan for the inspection of small passenger vessels meets such requirements as the Secretary may require to ensure the safety and operation of such vessels in accordance with the standards that would apply if the Coast Guard were inspecting such vessels; and

“(2) the State will provide such information obtained through the inspection program to the Secretary annually in such form and in such detail as the Secretary may require.

“(b) Fees.—The Secretary may adjust or waive the user fee imposed under section 3317 of title 46, United States Code, for the inspection of small passenger vessels inspected under the State program.

“(c) Termination.—The authority provided by subsection (a) terminates on December 31, 1999.

“(d) Definitions.—For purposes of this section—

“(1) Secretary.—The term ‘Secretary’ means the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating.

“(2) State.—The term ‘State’ means the State of Minnesota.

“(3) Small passenger vessel.—The term ‘small passenger vessel’ means a small passenger vessel (as defined in section 2101(35) of title 46, United States Code) of not more than 40 feet overall in length.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 2101, 3302 of this title.

§3302. Exemptions

(a) A vessel is not excluded from one category only because the vessel is—

(1) included in another category of section 3301 of this title; or

(2) excluded by this section from another category of section 3301 of this title.


(b) Except as provided in subsection (c)(3) of this section, a fishing vessel 1 including a vessel chartered part-time as a fish tender vessel, is exempt from section 3301(1), (7), (11), and (12) of this title.

(c)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (3) of this subsection, a fish processing vessel of not more than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title is exempt from section 3301(1), (6), (7), (11), and (12) of this title.

(2) Except as provided in paragraphs (3) and (4) of this subsection, a fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title is exempt from section 3301(1), (6), (7), (11), and (12) of this title.

(3)(A) A fishing vessel or fish processing vessel is exempt from section 3301(1), (6), and (7) of this title when transporting cargo (including fisheries-related cargo) to or from a place in Alaska if—

(i) that place does not receive weekly common carrier service by water from a place in the United States;

(ii) that place receives such common carrier service and the cargo is of a type not accepted by that common carrier service; or

(iii) the cargo is proprietary cargo owned by the owner of the vessel or any affiliated entity or subsidiary.


(B) A fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title, which is qualified to engage in the Aleutian trade is exempt from section 3301(1), (6), and (7) of this title when transporting cargo (including fisheries-related cargo) to or from a place in Alaska outside the Aleutian trade geographic area if—

(i) that place does not receive weekly common carrier service by water from a place in the United States;

(ii) that place receives such common carrier service and the cargo is of a type not accepted by that common carrier service; or

(iii) the cargo is proprietary cargo owned by the owner of the vessel or any affiliated entity or subsidiary.


(C) In this paragraph, the term “proprietary cargo” means cargo that—

(i) is used by the owner of the vessel or any affiliated entity or subsidiary in activities directly related to fishing or the processing of fish;

(ii) is consumed by employees of the owner of the vessel or any affiliated entity or subsidiary who are engaged in fishing or in the processing of fish; or

(iii) consists of fish or fish products harvested or processed by the owner of the vessel or any affiliated entity or subsidiary.


(D) Notwithstanding the restrictions in subparagraph (B) of this paragraph, vessels qualifying under subparagraph (B) may transport cargo (including fishery-related products) from a place in Alaska receiving weekly common carrier service by water to a final destination in Alaska not receiving weekly service by water from common carriers.

(4) A fish tender vessel is exempt from section 3301(1), (6), and (7) of this title when engaged in the Aleutian trade if the vessel—

(A) is not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title;

(B) has an incline test performed by a marine surveyor; and

(C) has written stability instructions posted on board the vessel.


(d)(1) A motor vessel of less than 150 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title, constructed before August 23, 1958, is not subject to inspection under section 3301(1) of this title if the vessel is owned or demise chartered to a cooperative or association that only transports cargo owned by at least one of its members on a nonprofit basis between places within the waters of—

(A) southeastern Alaska shoreward of the Boundary Line; or

(B) southeastern Alaska shoreward of the Boundary Line and—

(i) Prince Rupert, British Columbia; or

(ii) waters of Washington shoreward of the Boundary Line, via sheltered waters, as defined in article I of the treaty dated December 9, 1933, between the United States and Canada defining certain waters as sheltered waters.


(2) The transportation authorized under this subsection is limited to and from places not receiving annual weekly transportation service from any part of the United States by an established water common carrier. However, the limitation does not apply to transporting cargo of a character not accepted for transportation by that carrier.

(e) A vessel laid up, dismantled, or out of commission is exempt from inspection.

(f) Section 3301(4) and (8) of this title does not apply to an oceanographic research vessel because it is carrying scientific personnel.

(g)(1) Except when compliance with major structural or major equipment requirements is necessary to remove an especially hazardous condition, an offshore supply vessel is not subject to regulations or standards for those requirements if the vessel—

(A) was operating as an offshore supply vessel before January 2, 1979; or

(B) was contracted for before January 2, 1979, and entered into service as an offshore supply vessel before October 6, 1980.


(2) After December 31, 1988, this subsection does not apply to an offshore supply vessel that is at least 20 years of age.

(h) An offshore supply vessel operating on January 1, 1979, under a certificate of inspection issued by the Secretary, is subject to an inspection standard or requirement only if the standard or requirement could have been prescribed for the vessel under authority existing under law on October 5, 1980.

(i)(1) The Secretary may issue a permit exempting a vessel from any part of the requirements of this part for vessels transporting cargo, including bulk fuel, from one place in Alaska to another place in Alaska only if the vessel—

(A) is not more than 300 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title;

(B) is in a condition that does not present an immediate threat to the safety of life or the environment; and

(C) was operating in the waters off Alaska as of June 1, 1976, or the vessel is a replacement for a vessel that was operating in the waters off Alaska as of June 1, 1976, if the vessel being replaced is no longer in service.


(2) Except in a situation declared to be an emergency by the Secretary, a vessel operating under a permit may not transport cargo to or from a place if the cargo could be transported by another commercial vessel that is reasonably available and that does not require exemptions to operate legally or if the cargo could be readily transported by overland routes.

(3) A permit may be issued for a specific voyage or for not more than one year. The permit may impose specific requirements about the amount or type of cargo to be carried, manning, the areas or specific routes over which the vessel may operate, or other similar matters. The duration of the permit and restrictions contained in the permit shall be at the sole discretion of the Secretary.

(4) A designated Coast Guard official who has reason to believe that a vessel issued a permit is in a condition or is operated in a manner that creates an immediate threat to the safety of life or the environment or is operated in a manner that is inconsistent with the terms of the permit, may direct the master or individual in charge to take immediate and reasonable steps to safeguard life and the environment, including directing the vessel to a port or other refuge.

(5) If a vessel issued a permit creates an immediate threat to the safety of life or the environment, or is operated in a manner inconsistent with the terms of the permit or the requirements of paragraph (2) of this subsection, the permit may be revoked. The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel issued a permit, that willfully permits the vessel to be operated, or operates, the vessel in a manner inconsistent with the terms of the permit, is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $1,000.

(j) Notwithstanding another provision of this chapter, the Secretary is not required to inspect or prescribe regulations for a nautical school vessel of not more than 15 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(1) when used in connection with a course of instruction dealing with any aspect of maritime education or study; and

(2) operated by—

(A) the United States Merchant Marine Academy; or

(B) a State maritime academy assisted under section 1304 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936 (46 App. U.S.C. 1295c).


(k) Only the boiler, engine, and other operating machinery of a steam vessel that is a recreational vessel of not more than 65 feet overall in length are subject to inspection under section 3301(9) of this title.

(l)(1) The Secretary may issue a permit exempting the following vessels from the requirements of this part for passenger vessels so long as the vessels are owned by nonprofit organizations and operated as nonprofit memorials to merchant mariners:

(A) The steamship John W. Brown (United States official number 242209), owned by Project Liberty Ship Baltimore, Incorporated, located in Baltimore, Maryland.

(B) The steamship Lane Victory (United States official number 248094), owned by the United States Merchant Marine Veterans of World War II, located in San Pedro, California.

(C) The steamship Jeremiah O'Brien (United States official number 243622), owned by the National Liberty Ship Memorial, Inc..2


(2) The Secretary may issue a permit for a specific voyage or for not more than one year. The Secretary may impose specific requirements about the number of passengers to be carried, manning, the areas or specific routes over which the vessel may operate, or other similar matters.

(3) A designated Coast Guard official who has reason to believe that a vessel operating under this subsection is in a condition or is operated in a manner that creates an immediate threat to life or the environment or is operated in a manner that is inconsistent with this section, may direct the master or individual in charge to take immediate and reasonable steps to safeguard life and the environment, including directing the vessel to a port or other refuge.

(m) A seagoing barge is not subject to inspection under section 3301(6) of this title if the vessel is unmanned and does not carry—

(1) a hazardous material as cargo; or

(2) a flammable or combustible liquid, including oil, in bulk.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 510; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(3), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 445; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(3), (4), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 444; Pub. L. 101–595, title III, §303(a), title VI, §§602(b), 603(2), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2983, 2990, 2993; Pub. L. 103–206, title III, §311, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2426; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §711, title XI, §1110, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3935, 3969; Pub. L. 106–65, div. C, title XXXVI, §3604, Oct. 5, 1999, 113 Stat. 976.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3302 46:367

46:390

46:391(e)

46:404

46:420

46:442

Section 3302 does three things. It makes clear that a vessel included in one of the ten categories of vessels subject to inspection is not necessarily excluded from another category of vessel that is subject to inspection. For example, a vessel inspected and certified as a small passenger vessel would, when carrying oil or hazardous materials in bulk as cargo or cargo residue, also have to be inspected as a tank vessel. It makes it clear that a vessel excluded by section 3302 from the requirements of inspection in any one of the ten categories is not necessarily excluded from inspection as a vessel in another category. This section also contains a number of exemptions for certain classes of vessels and for those vessels engaged in a specific trade that have been considered to be of a special circumstance.

Amendments

1999—Subsec. (l)(1)(C). Pub. L. 106–65 substituted “owned by the National Liberty Ship Memorial, Inc.” for “owned by the United States Maritime Administration”.

1996—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324, §1110(1), substituted “Except as provided in subsection (c)(3) of this section, a fishing vessel” for “A fishing vessel,”.

Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §§711(1), 1110(2), substituted “Except as provided in paragraph (3) of this subsection, a fish processing vessel” for “A fish processing vessel” and inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “5,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 104–324, §§711(2), 1110(3), substituted “Except as provided in paragraphs (3) and (4) of this subsection, a fish tender vessel” for “A fish tender vessel” and inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c)(3). Pub. L. 104–324, §1110(4), amended par. (3) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (3) read as follows: “A fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons is exempt from section 3301(1), (6), and (7) of this title if—

“(A) when transporting cargo to or from a place in Alaska—

“(i) that place does not receive weekly common carrier service by water from a place in the United States; or

“(ii) the cargo is of a type not accepted by that common carrier service; or

“(B) in the case of a fish tender vessel, the vessel is not engaged in the Aleutian trade.”

Subsec. (c)(4)(A). Pub. L. 104–324, §711(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §711(4), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “150 gross tons”.

Subsec. (i)(1)(A). Pub. L. 104–324, §711(5), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “300 gross tons”.

Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 104–324, §711(6), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “15 gross tons”.

1993—Subsec. (m). Pub. L. 103–206 added subsec. (m).

1990—Subsec. (c)(3), (4). Pub. L. 101–595, §602(b), added pars. (3) and (4).

Subsec. (j)(2)(B). Pub. L. 101–595, §603(2), substituted “(46 App. U.S.C. 1295c)” for “(46 App. U.S.C. 1295(c))”.

Subsec. (l). Pub. L. 101–595, §303(a), added subsec. (l).

1986—Subsec. (i)(5). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(3), substituted “charterer” for “charter”.

Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(4), added subsec. (k).

1984—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 98–364 amended subsec. (b) generally, which prior to amendment read as follows: “A motor vessel engaged in fishing as a regular business, including oystering, clamming, crabbing, or the kelp or sponge industry, is exempt from section 3301(1), (4), and (7) of this title.”

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 98–364 amended subsec. (c) generally, which prior to amendment read as follows:

“(1) Before January 1, 1988, a motor vessel is exempt from section 3301(1), (4), and (7) of this title if the vessel is not more than 500 gross tons and—

“(A) is a cannery tender or a fishing tender in the salmon or crab fisheries of Alaska, Oregon, and Washington; and

“(B) only carries cargo to or from vessels in those fisheries or a facility used in processing or assembling fishery products, or transports cannery or fishing personnel to or from operating locations.

“(2) Before January 1, 1988, a vessel is exempt from section 3301(1), (4), (6), and (7) of this title if the vessel is not more than 5,000 gross tons and is used only in processing and assembling fishery products in the fisheries of Alaska, Oregon, and Washington.”

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by section 602(b) of Pub. L. 101–595 effective Nov. 16, 1990, except that requirements imposed by subsec. (c)(4)(B) and (C), effective six months after Nov. 16, 1990, see section 602(f) of Pub. L. 101–595, set out as a note under section 4502 of this title.

Vessels Repaired or Retrofitted for Mobile Trade Fair Purposes Deemed Out of Commission

Pub. L. 100–418, title X, §10003(b), Aug. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 1573, provided that: “For one year after the date of enactment of this Act [Aug. 23, 1988], a vessel that is undergoing repair or retrofitting for use solely for mobile trade fair purposes is deemed to be out of commission under section 3302(e) of title 46, United States Code, during the repair or retrofitting.”

Exemption of Certain Fishing and Fish Processing Vessels

Section 403 of Pub. L. 98–364, as amended by Pub. L. 99–36, §3, May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68; Pub. L. 101–225, title III, §306, Dec. 12, 1989, 103 Stat. 1925, provided that:

“(a) Except as provided in chapter 37 of title 46, United States Code, and before January 1, 1991, a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel, that is (1) not more than 500 gross tons and (2) in operation, or contracted for purchase to be used as a vessel of this type, before July 1, 1984, may transport cargo to or from a place in Alaska not receiving weekly transportation service from a port of the United States by an established water common carrier, except that the service limitation does not apply to transporting cargo of a type not accepted by that carrier.

“(b) A fish processing vessel entered into service before January 1, 1988, and more than 1,600 gross tons or entered into service after December 31, 1987, and having more than 16 individuals on board primarily employed in the preparation of fish or fish products is exempt from section 8702(b) of title 46, United States Code, until 18 months after the date of enactment of this Act [July 17, 1984].

“(c) As used in subsections (a) and (b) of this section, the terms ‘fishing vessel’, ‘fish processing vessel’ and ‘fish tender vessel’ shall have the meaning given to such terms in section 2101 of title 46, United States Code.”

Offshore Supply Vessels; Transition Period for Compliance With Vessel Inspection Provisions

Section 2(i) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 599, provided that: “Each offshore supply vessel described in section 3302(g) of title 46 (as enacted by section 1 of this Act), that was registered with the Secretary of Transportation under section 4426a(7) of the Revised Statutes [former 46 U.S.C. 404–1(7)] but that has not been inspected by the Secretary shall be held to be in compliance with all applicable vessel inspection laws pending verification by actual inspection or until one year after the date of enactment of this Act [Aug. 26, 1983], whichever is earlier.”

1 So in original. Probably should be followed by a comma.

2 So in original.

§3303. Reciprocity for foreign vessels

Except as provided in chapter 37 of this title, a foreign vessel of a country having inspection laws and standards similar to those of the United States and that has an unexpired certificate of inspection issued by proper authority of its respective country, is subject to an inspection to ensure that the condition of the vessel is as stated in its current certificate of inspection. A foreign country is considered to have inspection laws and standards similar to those of the United States when it is a party to an International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea to which the United States Government is currently a party. A foreign certificate of inspection may be accepted as evidence of lawful inspection only when presented by a vessel of a country that has by its laws accorded to vessels of the United States visiting that country the same privileges accorded to vessels of that country visiting the United States.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 512; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5210(a), Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5076; Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1111, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3970.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3303 46:362(a)

46:390c

46:391a(3)

Section 3303 acknowledges the international concept of comity with respect to recognizing inspection laws and standards for foreign flag vessels that are similar to those of the United States. If a foreign nation is signatory to the International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea, it is presumed to have similar standards. However, reciprocity requirements for foreign flag tank vessels are included in chapter 37. Subsection (b) provides for a mutual waiver of fees for the inspection of foreign vessels carrying passengers from the United States.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324 struck out subsec. (a) designation and subsec. (b) which read as follows: “The Secretary shall collect and pay to the Treasury the same fees for the inspection of foreign vessels carrying passengers from the United States that a foreign country charges vessels of the United States trading to the ports of that country. The Secretary may waive at any time the collection of the fees on notice of the proper authorities of any country concerned that the collection of fees for the inspection of vessels of the United States has been discontinued.”

1992—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 102–587, in first sentence, struck out “only” after “is subject” and substituted “the condition of the vessel is” for “the condition of the vessel's propulsion equipment and lifesaving equipment are”.

International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea

For International Conventions for the Safety of Life at Sea to which the United States has been a party, see section 1602 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters, and notes thereunder.

Contiguous Zone of United States

For extension of contiguous zone of United States, see Proc. No. 7219, Sept. 2, 1999, 64 F.R. 48701, set out as a note under section 1331 of Title 43, Public Lands.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3505 of this title.

§3304. Transporting individuals in addition to crew

(a) A documented vessel transporting cargo that transports not more than 12 individuals in addition to the crew on international voyages, or not more than 16 individuals in addition to the crew on other voyages, is not subject to inspection as a passenger vessel or a small passenger vessel if the vessel is otherwise subject to inspection under this chapter.

(b) Except when subsection (e) of this section applies, before an individual in addition to the crew is transported on a vessel as permitted by this section, the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel first shall notify the individual of the presence on board of dangerous articles as defined by law, and of other conditions or circumstances that would constitute a risk of safety to the individual on board.

(c) A privilege authorized by this section applies to a vessel of a foreign country that affords a similar privilege to vessels of the United States in trades not restricted to vessels under its own flag.

(d) A fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel that transports not more than 12 individuals employed in the fishing industry in addition to the crew is not subject to inspection as a passenger or small passenger vessel.

(e) The Secretary may by regulation allow individuals in addition to the crew to be transported in an emergency or under section 2304 of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 513; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(4), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 446; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(5)(A), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 444.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3304 46:390–393

46:882

Section 3304 permits the carriage of not more than 12 individuals in addition to the crew on international voyages or not more than 16 individuals in addition to the crew on other voyages without subjecting a documented vessel carrying cargo to the inspection requirements of a passenger vessel. This section permits the bulk of vessels subject to the International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea to carry up to 12 passengers and to permit other cargo vessels, primarily those engaged in the coastwise trade, to carry up to 16 passengers without being categorized as passenger vessels. It also requires that these individuals be notified of the presence of dangerous articles or other conditions or circumstances that constitute a risk of safety. This is of prime importance on tank vessels that carry flammable or hazardous cargoes.

Amendments

1986—Pub. L. 99–307, §1(5)(A)(i), substituted “Transporting” for “Carrying” in section catchline.

Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(5)(A)(ii), substituted “transporting cargo that transports” for “carrying cargo that carries” and inserted “if the vessel is otherwise subject to inspection under this chapter”.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(5)(A)(iii), substituted “Except when subsection (e) of this section applies, before” for “Before” and “transported” for “carried”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(5)(A)(iv), substituted “A privilege” for “The privilege”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 99–307, §1(5)(A)(v), added subsec. (e).

1984—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 98–364 added subsec. (d).

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3318 of this title.

§3305. Scope and standards of inspection

(a) The inspection process shall ensure that a vessel subject to inspection—

(1) is of a structure suitable for the service in which it is to be employed;

(2) is equipped with proper appliances for lifesaving, fire prevention, and firefighting;

(3) has suitable accommodations for the crew, sailing school instructors, and sailing school students, and for passengers on the vessel if authorized to carry passengers;

(4) is in a condition to be operated with safety to life and property; and

(5) complies with applicable marine safety laws and regulations.


(b) If an inspection, or examination under section 3308 of this title, reveals that a life preserver, lifesaving device, or firehose is defective and incapable of being repaired, the owner or master shall destroy the life preserver, lifesaving device, or firehose in the presence of the official conducting the inspection or examination.

(c) A nautical school vessel operated by a civilian nautical school or by an educational institution under section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986 shall be inspected like a small passenger vessel or a passenger vessel, depending on its tonnage.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 513; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(1), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 67; Pub. L. 99–640, §13(e), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3551.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3305 46:369
  46:390a
  46:391
  46:392
  46:395
  46:404–1
  46:405
  46:406
  46:407
  46:408
  46:660a
  46:881

Section 3305 consolidates, at one place, the basic scope of coverage of the inspection process. It is to be noted that the time difference in enactment of various statutes has resulted in some anomalies. Thus, for example, R.S. 4417 (46 U.S.C. 391) which had originally set periods of inspection and vested authority in “local inspectors” was expanded over the years to provide the base for inspection of certain classes of vessels as well as setting out the periods and scope. The distillation of inspection objectives and standards in later laws and the transfer of all functions of separately created bureaus and functionaries to the Coast Guard permit this consolidation. There are those who have a desire to see the scope and standards of inspection be more specific in law similar to those presently applicable to boilers and boiler plating that predate 1871. The Committee believes this serves no useful purpose since the specifics are either antiquated or too limiting and have, in fact, been superceded by the statutorily authorized adoption of various industrial specifications, standards, and codes by the Coast Guard. These include the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), American National Standards Institute (ANSI), American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), American Welding Society (AWS), Underwriters Laboratories (UL), and many others. In addition, Coast Guard regulations must also implement and conform to the numerous international maritime safety treaties to which the United States is signatory. The Committee expects that the regulatory flexibility being provided will not reduce the present vessel inspection requirements that have been historically developed.

Section 3305(a) establishes the statutory scope of the Coast Guard's vessel inspection authority and duty. The inspection process shall ensure that a vessel is of suitable structure, equipment, and accommodations, is maintained in an operating condition consistent with safety of life and property, and complies with applicable marine safety laws and regulations.

Subsection (b) requires that defective life preservers and firehose be destroyed in the presence of the inspecting official, normally a qualified Coast Guard marine inspector. The Committee believes that if this equipment is defective for use on an inspected vessel, it should be destroyed so that it cannot be used on an uninspected or recreational vessel.

Subsection (c) provides flexibility in the inspection of various sizes of nautical school vessels.

References in Text

Section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986, referred to in subsec. (c), is section 13 of Pub. L. 99–640, which enacted section 484d of Title 40, Public Buildings, Property, and Works, and amended sections 2101 and 3305 of this title.

Amendments

1986—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 99–640 inserted “or by an educational institution under section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986”.

1985—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 99–36 substituted “lifesaving” and “life preserver, lifesaving device, or firehose” for “life-saving” and “life preserver or firehose”, respectively.

§3306. Regulations

(a) To carry out this part and to secure the safety of individuals and property on board vessels subject to inspection, the Secretary shall prescribe necessary regulations to ensure the proper execution of, and to carry out, this part in the most effective manner for—

(1) the design, construction, alteration, repair, and operation of those vessels, including superstructures, hulls, fittings, equipment, appliances, propulsion machinery, auxiliary machinery, boilers, unfired pressure vessels, piping, electric installations, and accommodations for passengers and crew, sailing school instructors, and sailing school students;

(2) lifesaving equipment and its use;

(3) firefighting equipment, its use, and precautionary measures to guard against fire;

(4) inspections and tests related to paragraphs (1), (2), and (3) of this subsection; and

(5) the use of vessel stores and other supplies of a dangerous nature.


(b)(1) Equipment and material subject to regulation under this section may not be used on any vessel without prior approval of the Secretary.

(2) Except with respect to use on a public vessel, the Secretary may treat an approval of equipment or materials by a foreign government as approval by the Secretary for purposes of paragraph (1) if the Secretary determines that—

(A) the design standards and testing procedures used by that government meet the requirements of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974;

(B) the approval of the equipment or material by the foreign government will secure the safety of individuals and property on board vessels subject to inspection; and

(C) for lifesaving equipment, the foreign government—

(i) has given equivalent treatment to approvals of lifesaving equipment by the Secretary; and

(ii) otherwise ensures that lifesaving equipment approved by the Secretary may be used on vessels that are documented and subject to inspection under the laws of that country.


(c) In prescribing regulations for sailing school vessels, the Secretary shall consult with representatives of the private sector having experience in the operation of vessels likely to be certificated as sailing school vessels. The regulations shall—

(1) reflect the specialized nature of sailing school vessel operations, and the character, design, and construction of vessels operating as sailing school vessels; and

(2) include requirements for notice to sailing school instructors and sailing school students about the specialized nature of sailing school vessels and applicable safety regulations.


(d) In prescribing regulations for nautical school vessels operated by the United States Merchant Marine Academy or by a State maritime academy (as defined in section 1302(3) of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936 (46 App. U.S.C. 1295a(3))), the Secretary shall consider the function, purpose, and operation of the vessels, their routes, and the number of individuals who may be carried on the vessels.

(e) When the Secretary finds it in the public interest, the Secretary may suspend or grant exemptions from the requirements of a regulation prescribed under this section related to lifesaving and firefighting equipment, muster lists, ground tackle and hawsers, and bilge systems.

(f) In prescribing regulations for offshore supply vessels, the Secretary shall consider the characteristics, methods of operation, and the nature of the service of offshore supply vessels.

(g) In prescribing regulations for fish processing or fish tender vessels, the Secretary shall consult with representatives of the private sector having experience in the operation of these vessels. The regulations shall reflect the specialized nature and economics of fish processing or fish tender vessel operations and the character, design, and construction of fish processing or fish tender vessels.

(h) The Secretary shall establish appropriate structural fire protection, manning, operating, and equipment requirements for vessels of at least 100 gross tons but less than 300 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title carrying not more than 150 passengers on domestic voyages, which meet the eligibility criteria of section 2113(4) of this title.

(i) The Secretary shall establish appropriate structural fire protection, manning, operating, and equipment requirements for former public vessels of the United States of at least 100 gross tons but less that 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title carrying not more than 150 passengers on domestic voyages, which meet the eligibility criteria of section 2113(5) of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 513; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(5), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 446; Pub. L. 103–206, title V, §512(a), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2442; Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §604(a), (c), title VII, §712, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3930, 3931, 3936.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3306 46:366
  46:369
  46:375
  46:390b
  46:392
  46:404
  46:408
  46:411
  46:412
  46:416
  46:420
  46:445
  46:459
  46:473
  46:477
  46:478
  46:479
  46:481
  46:482
  46:483
  46:489
  46:526p
  46:1295f(c)

Section 3306 contains broad authority to prescribe regulations for the proper inspection and certification of vessels. It provides regulatory flexibility for meeting technological changes. The section also permits flexibility in prescribing regulations for nautical school vessels operated by the United States Merchant Marine Academy or by a State maritime academy. The Secretary may suspend or grant exemptions to certain limited inspection requirements when the Secretary finds that this is necessary in the public interest. It also contains the requirement that in regulating offshore supply vessels consideration must be given to the special nature of their operations.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 104–324, §604(c), substituted “paragraphs (1), (2), and (3)” for “clauses (1)–(3)”.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324, §604(a), amended subsec. (b) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (b) read as follows: “Equipment subject to regulation under this section may not be used on any vessel without prior approval as prescribed by regulation.”

Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 104–324, §712(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “300 gross tons”.

Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 104–324, §712(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

1993—Subsecs. (h), (i). Pub. L. 103–206 added subsecs. (h) and (i).

1984—Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 98–364 added subsec. (g).

Regulations

Section 512(b), (c) of Pub. L. 103–206 provided that:

“(b) The Secretary of Transportation shall, within twenty-four months of the date of enactment of this Act [Dec. 20, 1993], prescribe regulations establishing the structural fire protection, manning, operating, and equipment requirements for vessels which meet the requirements of subsections (h) and (i) of section 3306 of title 46, United States Code, as amended by this Act.

“(c) Before the Secretary of Transportation prescribes regulations under subsections (h) and (i) of section 3306 of title 46, United States Code, as amended by this Act, the Secretary may prescribe the route, service, manning, and equipment for those vessels based on existing passenger vessel and small passenger vessel regulations.”

Foreign Approvals

Section 604(b) of Pub. L. 104–324 provided that: “The Secretary of Transportation, in consultation with other interested Federal agencies, shall work with foreign governments to have those governments approve the use of the same equipment and materials on vessels documented under the laws of those countries that the Secretary requires on United States documented vessels.”

International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea

For International Conventions for the Safety of Life at Sea to which the United States has been a party, see section 1602 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters, and notes thereunder.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 3313, 3318 of this title.

§3307. Frequency of inspection

Each vessel subject to inspection under this part shall undergo an initial inspection for certification before being put into service. After being put into service—

(1) each passenger vessel, nautical school vessel, and small passenger vessel allowed to carry more than 12 passengers on a foreign voyage shall be inspected at least once a year; and

(2) any other vessel shall be inspected at least once every 5 years.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 514; Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §605(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3931.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3307(1) 46:391(c)

46:1295f(c)

3307(2) 46:390a(a)

46:404–1(6)(i)

3307(3) 46:391(b)

46:392(b)

46:404–1(6)(ii)

Section 3307 requires each vessel subject to inspection to undergo an initial inspection prior to being placed in service. This is normally started during the construction or reconstruction phase and is a continuing process until final certification for operation in a particular trade. Subsequent periodic inspections are also required for various types of vessels. It is to be noted that a freight vessel of less than 100 gross tons shall be inspected at 3 year intervals while the larger freight vessel has a 2 year inspection period. This is being done to retain the existing procedure of issuing 3 year certificates of inspection to smaller vessels, however, this does not prevent periodic inspections or examinations at intervening periods.

Amendments

1996—Par. (1). Pub. L. 104–324, §605(a)(1), substituted “, nautical school vessel, and small passenger vessel allowed to carry more than 12 passengers on a foreign voyage” for “and nautical school vessel” and inserted “and” at end.

Pars. (2), (3). Pub. L. 104–324, §605(a)(2), (3), redesignated par. (3) as (2), substituted “5 years” for “2 years”, and struck out former par. (2) which read as follows: “each small passenger vessel, freight vessel or offshore supply vessel of less than 100 gross tons, and sailing school vessel shall be inspected at least once every 3 years; and”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 3308, 3309 of this title.

§3308. Examinations

In addition to inspections required by section 3307 of this title, the Secretary shall examine or have examined—

(1) each vessel subject to inspection at proper times to ensure compliance with law and regulations; and

(2) crewmember accommodations on each vessel subject to inspection at least once a month or when the vessel enters United States ports to ensure that the accommodations are—

(A) of the size required by law and regulations;

(B) properly ventilated and in a clean and sanitary condition; and

(C) equipped with proper plumbing and mechanical appliances required by law and regulations, and the appliances are in good working condition.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 514; Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §603(c), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3930.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3308 46:435

46:660a

46:660b

Section 3308 requires the Secretary to carry out additional inspections as might be necessary to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations, and to ensure that accommodations are maintained in a sanitary condition and that all appliances are in good working order.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “or have examined” after “examine” in introductory provisions.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3305 of this title.

§3309. Certificate of inspection

(a) When an inspection under section 3307 of this title has been made and a vessel has been found to be in compliance with the requirements of law and regulations, a certificate of inspection, in a form prescribed by the Secretary, shall be issued to the vessel.

(b) The Secretary may issue a temporary certificate of inspection in place of a regular certificate of inspection issued under subsection (a) of this section.

(c) At least 30 days before the current certificate of inspection issued to a vessel under subsection (a) of this section expires, the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel shall submit to the Secretary in writing a notice that the vessel—

(1) will be required to be inspected; or

(2) will not be operated so as to require an inspection.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 515; Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §211(a), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2303; Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §606, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3931.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3309 46:390c

46:391a(8)

46:395(d)

46:399

Section 3309 provides for the issuance of a certificate of inspection that attests to the fact that the vessel has been found to be in compliance with the applicable maritime safety laws and regulations. Under this provision the Coast Guard can issue a temporary certificate of inspection upon compliance with the applicable laws or regulations to facilitate the preparation, processing, and forwarding of the regular certificate of inspection to the vessel. A temporary certificate does not imply less than satisfactory compliance.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 104–324 struck out “(but not more than 60 days)” after “30 days” in introductory provisions.

1984—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 98–498 added subsec. (c).

Effective Date of 1984 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 98–498 effective 180 days after Oct. 19, 1984, see section 214 of Pub. L. 98–498, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2306 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 3311, 3312, 3318 of this title.

§3310. Records of certification

The Secretary shall keep records of certificates of inspection of vessels and of all acts in the examination and inspection of vessels, whether of approval or disapproval.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 515.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3310 46:414

Section 3310 contains the requirement for maintaining inspection records.

§3311. Certificate of inspection required

(a) Except as provided in subsection (b), a vessel subject to inspection under this part may not be operated without having on board a certificate of inspection issued under section 3309 of this title.

(b) The Secretary may direct the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel subject to inspection under this chapter and not having on board a certificate of inspection—

(1) to have the vessel proceed to mooring and remain there until a certificate of inspection is issued;

(2) to take immediate steps necessary for the safety of the vessel, individuals on board the vessel, or the environment; or

(3) to have the vessel proceed to a place to make repairs necessary to obtain a certificate of inspection.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 515; Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §211(b), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2304.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3311 46:390c

46:395

46:399

Section 3311 prohibits the operation of a vessel subject to inspection without having on board a valid certificate of inspection.

Amendments

1984—Pub. L. 98–498 designated existing provisions as subsec. (a), substituted “Except as provided in subsection (b), a vessel” for “A vessel”, struck out “valid” before “certificate of inspection”, and added subsec. (b).

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3318 of this title.

§3312. Display of certificate of inspection

The certificate of inspection issued to a vessel under section 3309 of this title shall be displayed, suitably framed, in a conspicuous place on the vessel. When it is not practicable to so display the certificate, it shall be carried in the manner prescribed by regulation.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 515.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3312 46:400

Section 3312 requires the conspicuous display of the certificate of inspection to provide notice that the vessel is in compliance with applicable maritime safety laws and regulations. The section also applies to the posting of the temporary certificate of inspection.

§3313. Compliance with certificate of inspection

(a) During the term of a vessel's certificate of inspection, the vessel must be in compliance with its conditions, unless relieved by a suspension or an exemption granted under section 3306(e) of this title.

(b) When a vessel is not in compliance with its certificate or fails to meet a standard prescribed by this part or a regulation prescribed under this part—

(1) the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge shall be ordered in writing to correct the noted deficiencies promptly;

(2) the Secretary may permit any repairs to be made at a place most convenient to the owner, charterer, or managing operator when the Secretary decides the repairs can be made with safety to those on board and the vessel;

(3) the vessel may be required to cease operating at once; and

(4) if necessary, the certificate shall be suspended or revoked.


(c) The vessel's certificate of inspection shall be revoked if a condition unsafe to life that is ordered to be corrected under this section is not corrected at once.

(d) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel whose certificate has been suspended or revoked shall be given written notice immediately of the suspension or revocation. The owner or master may appeal to the Secretary the suspension or revocation within 30 days of receiving the notice, as provided by regulations prescribed by the Secretary.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 515.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3313 46:390c

46:391a(8)

46:435

Section 3313 requires a vessel to be maintained in a condition so as to always be in compliance with the applicable laws and regulations. Here the master, owner, or other responsible party is required to maintain the vessel to inspection standards and to correct all deficiencies observed. When a vessel is not in compliance with its certificate the responsible parties shall be ordered in writing to correct the deficiencies promptly. The section provides flexibility as to when and where these deficiencies may be corrected consistent with the safety of the vessel and crew. The section provides authority to require the vessel to cease operating or, if necessary, to suspend or revoke its certificate of inspection when found not to be in compliance with its certificate or regulations. The owner or master, or other responsible party must be given written notice and may appeal this action within 30 days of receiving the notice.

§3314. Expiration of certificate of inspection

(a) If the certificate of inspection of a vessel expires when the vessel is on a foreign voyage, the vessel may complete the voyage to a port of the United States within 30 days of the expiration of the certificate without incurring the penalties for operating without a certificate of inspection.

(b) If the certificate of inspection would expire within 15 days of sailing on a foreign voyage from a United States port, the vessel shall secure a new certificate of inspection before sailing, unless the voyage is scheduled to be completed prior to the expiration date of the certificate. If a voyage scheduled to be completed in that time is not so completed, the applicable penalties may be enforced unless the failure to meet the schedule was beyond the control of the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel.

(c) When the certificate of inspection of a foreign vessel carrying passengers, operated on a regularly established line, expires at sea after leaving the country to which it belongs or when the vessel is in the United States, the Secretary may permit the vessel to sail on its regular route without further inspection than would have been required had the certificate not expired. This permission applies only when the vessel will be regularly inspected and issued a certificate before the vessel's next return to the United States.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 516.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3314 46:362

46:399

Section 3314 contains the procedures for when a vessel's certificate of inspection expires while on a foreign voyage.

§3315. Disclosure of defects and protection of informants

(a) Each individual licensed under part E of this subtitle shall assist in the inspection or examination under this part of the vessel on which the individual is serving, and shall point out defects and imperfections known to the individual in matters subject to regulations and inspection. The individual also shall make known to officials designated to enforce this part, at the earliest opportunity, any marine casualty producing serious injury to the vessel, its equipment, or individuals on the vessel.

(b) An official may not disclose the name of an individual providing information under this section, or the source of the information, to a person except a person authorized by the Secretary. An official violating this subsection is liable to disciplinary action under applicable law.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 516.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3315 46:234

Section 3315 requires an individual holding a license issued by the Coast Guard to assist inspection authorities and to make defects and imperfections known to those authorities. Anyone licensed also has a duty to report any marine casualty producing serious injury to the vessel, its equipment, or individuals on board the vessel. These licensed individuals who have this statutorily imposed duty to disclose are also protected by prohibiting any government official from disclosing the identity or source of the information except as authorized by the Secretary.

§3316. Classification societies

(a) Each department, agency, and instrumentality of the United States Government shall recognize the American Bureau of Shipping as its agent in classifying vessels owned by the Government and in matters related to classification, as long as the Bureau is maintained as an organization having no capital stock and paying no dividends. The Secretary and the Secretary of Transportation each shall appoint one representative (except when the Secretary is the Secretary of Transportation, in which case the Secretary shall appoint both representatives) who shall represent the Government on the executive committee of the Bureau. The Bureau shall agree that the representatives shall be accepted by it as active members of the committee. The representatives shall serve without compensation, except for necessary traveling expenses.

(b)(1) The Secretary may delegate to the American Bureau of Shipping or another classification society recognized by the Secretary as meeting acceptable standards for such a society, for a vessel documented or to be documented under chapter 121 of this title, the authority to—

(A) review and approve plans required for issuing a certificate of inspection required by this part;

(B) conduct inspections and examinations; and

(C) issue a certificate of inspection required by this part and other related documents.


(2) The Secretary may make a delegation under paragraph (1) to a foreign classification society only—

(A) to the extent that the government of the foreign country in which the society is headquartered delegates authority and provides access to the American Bureau of Shipping to inspect, certify, and provide related services to vessels documented in that country; and

(B) if the foreign classification society has offices and maintains records in the United States.


(3) When an inspection or examination has been delegated under this subsection, the Secretary's delegate—

(A) shall maintain in the United States complete files of all information derived from or necessarily connected with the inspection or examination for at least 2 years after the vessel ceases to be certified; and

(B) shall permit access to those files at all reasonable times to any officer, employee, or member of the Coast Guard designated—

(i) as a marine inspector and serving in a position as a marine inspector; or

(ii) in writing by the Secretary to have access to those files.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 516; Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §607(a), (b)(1), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3931, 3932.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3316 46:9 (less (c))

46:369

46:881

Section 3316 prescribes the relationship between certain classification societies and the Federal Government with respect to the promotion of maritime safety and the security of life and property at sea. Briefly stated, a classification society, like the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), establishes and administers standards for the design, construction, and periodic survey of commercial vessels, yachts, and other marine structures. Classification certifies adherence to these standards, thus representing that a vessel or structure possesses the structural and mechanical fitness required for its intended service.

The section requires that a Federal department, agency, or instrumentality recognize the American Bureau of Shipping as its agent for classing vessels owned by the Federal Government and in any matters related to classification. In effect, the ABS has a statutory monopoly on classing vessels of the United States Government. Additionally, the section contains the authority to permit the Secretary to rely on reports, documents, and certificates issued by a classification society that is similar to the American Bureau of Shipping. However, a “similar classification society” continues to mean one that is organized like the American Bureau of Shipping with attendant governmental representation.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, §607(b)(1), substituted “Classification societies” for “United States classification societies” in section catchline.

Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104–324, §607(a)(3), which directed the substitution of “American Bureau of Shipping” for “Bureau”, was executed by making the substitution the first place appearing, to reflect the probable intent of Congress.

Pub. L. 104–324, §607(a)(1), (2), redesignated subsec. (b) as (a) and struck out former subsec. (a) which read as follows: “In carrying out this part, the Secretary may rely on reports, documents, and certificates issued by the American Bureau of Shipping or a similar United States classification society, or an agent of the Bureau or society.”

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324, §607(a)(2), (4), redesignated subsec. (c) as (b), added pars. (1) and (2), redesignated former par. (2) as (3), and struck out former par. (1) which read as follows: “To the maximum extent practicable, the Secretary may delegate to the Bureau or a similar United States classification society, or an agent of the Bureau or society, the inspection or examination, in the United States or in a foreign country, of a vessel documented or to be documented as a vessel of the United States. The Bureau, society, or agent may issue the certificate of inspection required by this part and other certificates essential to documentation.” Former subsec. (b) redesignated (a).

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 104–324, §607(a)(2), redesignated subsec. (c) as (b).

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 104–324, §607(a)(1), struck out subsec. (d) which read as follows: “The Secretary also may make an agreement with or use the Bureau or a similar United States classification society, or an agent of the Bureau or society, for reviewing and approving plans required for issuing a certificate of inspection.”

§3317. Fees

(a) The Secretary may prescribe by regulation fees for inspecting or examining a small passenger vessel or a sailing school vessel.

(b) When an inspection or examination under this part of a documented vessel or a foreign vessel is conducted at a foreign port or place at the request of the owner or managing operator of the vessel, the owner or operator shall reimburse the Secretary for the travel and subsistence expenses incurred by the personnel assigned to perform the inspection or examination. Amounts received as reimbursement for these expenses shall be credited to the appropriation for operating expenses of the Coast Guard.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 517; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5211, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5076.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3317 46:390a(b)

46:382b–1

Section 3317 provides the regulatory authority for prescribing fees for the inspection of small passenger vessels and sailing school vessels. Although section 2110 generally prohibits fees of this nature, this provision is consistent with the exception that permits specific statutory authorization for fee collection. Subsection (b) requires the reimbursement of expenses for the conduct of an inspection or examination at a foreign port or place when done there for the convenience of the owner or operator of the vessel.

Amendments

1992—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 102–587 substituted “under this part of a documented vessel or a foreign vessel” for “under this chapter of a documented vessel”.

§3318. Penalties

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this part, the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel operated in violation of this part or a regulation prescribed under this part, and a person violating a regulation that applies to a small passenger vessel, freight vessel of less than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title, or sailing school vessel, are liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(b)(1) A person that knowingly manufactures, sells, offers for sale, or possesses with intent to sell, any equipment subject to this part, and the equipment is so defective as to be insufficient to accomplish the purpose for which it is intended, commits a class D felony.

(2) A person commits a class D felony if the person—

(A) alters or services lifesaving, fire safety, or any other equipment subject to this part for compensation; and

(B) by that alteration or servicing, intentionally renders that equipment unsafe and unfit for the purpose for which it is intended.


(c) A person that employs a means or device whereby a boiler may be subjected to a pressure greater than allowed by the terms of the vessel's certificate of inspection commits a class D felony.

(d) A person that deranges or hinders the operation of any machinery or device employed on a vessel to denote the state of steam or water in any boiler or to give warning of approaching danger, or permits the water level of any boiler when in operation of a vessel to fall below its prescribed low-water line, commits a class D felony.

(e) A person that alters, defaces, obliterates, removes, or destroys any plans or specifications required by and approved under a regulation prescribed under section 3306 of this title, with intent to deceive or impede any official of the United States in carrying out that official's duties, commits a class A misdemeanor.

(f) A person commits a class D felony.1 if the person—

(1) forges or counterfeits with intent to make it appear genuine any mark or stamp prescribed for material to be tested and approved under section 3306 of this title or a regulation prescribed under section 3306;

(2) knowingly uses, affixes, or causes to be used or affixed, any such forged or counterfeited mark or stamp to or on material of any description;

(3) with fraudulent intent, possesses any such mark, stamp, or other device knowing it to be forged or counterfeited; or

(4) with fraudulent intent, marks or causes to be marked with the trademark or name of another, material required to be tested and approved under section 3306 of this title or a regulation prescribed under section 3306.


(g) A person is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000, if the person—

(1) interferes with the inspection of a nautical school vessel;

(2) violates a regulation prescribed for a nautical school vessel;

(3) is an owner of a nautical school vessel operated in violation of this part; or

(4) is an officer or member of the board of directors of a school, organization, association, partnership, or corporation owning a nautical school vessel operated in violation of a regulation prescribed for a nautical school vessel.


(h) An owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel that fails to give the notice required by section 3304(b) of this title is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $1,000. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(i) A person violating section 3309(c) of this title is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $1,000.

(j)(1) An owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel required to be inspected under this chapter operating the vessel without the certificate of inspection is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $10,000 for each day during which the violation occurs, except when the violation involves operation of a vessel of less than 1,600 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title, the penalty is not more than $2,000 for each day during which the violation occurs. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(2) A person is not liable for a penalty under this subsection if—

(A) the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel has notified the Secretary under section 3309(c) of this title;

(B) the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel has complied with all other directions and requirements for obtaining an inspection under this part; and

(C) the Secretary believes that unforeseen circumstances exist so that it is not feasible to conduct a scheduled inspection before the expiration of the certificate of inspection.


(k) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel failing to comply with a direction issued by the Secretary under section 3311(b) of this title is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $10,000 for each day during which the violation occurs. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(l) A person committing an act described by subsections (b)–(f) of this section is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000. If the violation involves the operation of a vessel, the vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 517; Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §211(c), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2304; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(6), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4302(b), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 538; Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §310, title VII, §713, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3919, 3936.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3318 46:369(e)

46:390d

46:398

46:403

46:407

46:408

46:410

46:413

46:436

46:481(d)

46:1295f(d)(2), (3)

Section 3318 provides for a number of specific civil and criminal penalties.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104–324, §713(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §310, designated existing provisions as par. (1) and added par. (2).

Subsec. (j)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §713(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,600 gross tons”.

1990—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(b)(1), substituted “commits a class D felony” for “shall be fined not more than $10,000, imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(b)(2), substituted “commits a class D felony” for “shall be fined not more than $5,000, imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(b)(3), substituted “commits a class D felony” for “shall be fined not more than $5,000, imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(b)(4), substituted “commits a class A misdemeanor” for “shall be fined not more than $10,000, imprisoned for not more than 2 years, or both”.

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(b)(5), substituted “commits a class D felony.” for “shall be fined not less than $1,000 but not more than $10,000, and imprisoned for not less than 2 years but not more than 5 years,”.

1986—Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 99–307 in provision preceding par. (1) substituted “than” for “then” in two places.

1984—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(1), substituted “Except as otherwise provided in this part, the” for “The” and “not more than $5,000” for “$1,000, except that when the violation involves operation of a barge, the penalty is $500”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(2), substituted “$5,000” for “$2,000”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(3), substituted “$5,000” for “$2,000”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(4), substituted “$10,000” for “$2,000”.

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(5), substituted “$10,000” for “$5,000”.

Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(6), substituted “is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000” for “shall be fined not more than $10,000, imprisoned for not more than one year, or both”.

Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(7), substituted “Government for a civil penalty of not more than $1,000.” for “United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $500.”

Subsecs. (i) to (l). Pub. L. 98–498, §211(c)(8), added subsecs. (i) to (l).

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

1 So in original. The period probably should be a comma.

CHAPTER 35—CARRIAGE OF PASSENGERS

Sec.
3501.
Number of passengers.
3502.
List or count of passengers.
3503.
Fire-retardant materials.
3504.
Notification to passengers.
3505.
Prevention of departure.
3506.
Copies of laws.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 35 consolidates the laws that have specific application to the carriage of passengers. They provide special provisions for listing and counting the number of passengers on board a vessel, for notifying the general public of the safety standards that are applicable, and for related control measures.

§3501. Number of passengers

(a) Each certificate of inspection issued to a vessel carrying passengers (except a ferry) shall include a statement on the number of passengers that the vessel is permitted to carry.

(b) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel is liable to a person suing them for carrying more passengers than the number of passengers permitted by the certificate of inspection in an amount equal to—

(1) passage money; and

(2) $100 for each passenger in excess of the number of passengers permitted.


(c) An owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel that knowingly carries more passengers than the number of passengers permitted by the certificate of inspection also shall be fined not more than $100, imprisoned for not more than 30 days, or both.

(d) The vessel also is liable in rem for a penalty under this section.

(e) An offshore supply vessel may not carry passengers except in an emergency.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 519; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(2), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 67.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3501 46:404–1

46:451

46:452

46:462

Section 3501 requires that a vessel carrying passengers, including a passenger vessel as well as a small passenger vessel (except a ferry), shall have on the certificate of inspection a statement as to the number of passengers the vessel is permitted to carry. It also provides penalties for carrying passengers in excess of the number permitted.

Amendments

1985—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(2)(A), struck out the comma after “(except a ferry)”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(2)(B), substituted “carries more passengers than the number of passengers permitted by the certificate of inspection” for “violates subsection (b) of this section”.

Effective Date

Chapter effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

§3502. List or count of passengers

(a) The owner, charterer, managing operator, master, or individual in charge of the following categories of vessels carrying passengers shall keep a correct list of passengers received and delivered from day to day:

(1) vessels arriving from foreign ports (except at United States Great Lakes ports from Canadian Great Lakes ports).

(2) seagoing vessels in the coastwise trade.

(3) passenger vessels making voyages of more than 300 miles on the Great Lakes except from a Canadian to a United States port.


(b) The master of a vessel carrying passengers (except a vessel listed in subsection (a) of this section) shall keep a correct count of all passengers received and delivered.

(c) Lists and counts required under this section shall be open to the inspection of designated officials of the Coast Guard and the Customs Service at all times. The total number of passengers shall be provided to the Coast Guard when requested.

(d) This section applies to a foreign vessel arriving at a United States port.

(e) The owner, charterer, managing operator, master, or individual in charge of a passenger vessel failing to make a list or count of passengers as required by this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $100. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 519.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3502 46:460

46:460a

46:461

46:462

Section 3502 is related to section 3501 and requires the listing or counting of passengers on certain vessels. This requirement applies to large as well as small passenger vessels when operating on the types of voyages enumerated. This section also applies to a foreign vessel arriving at a port or place in the United States.

§3503. Fire-retardant materials

(a) A passenger vessel of the United States having berth or stateroom accommodations for at least 50 passengers shall be granted a certificate of inspection only if the vessel is constructed of fire-retardant materials. Before November 1, 2008, this section does not apply to any vessel in operation before January 1, 1968, and operating only within the Boundary Line.

(b)(1) When a vessel is exempted from the fire-retardant standards of this section—

(A) the owner or managing operator of the vessel shall notify prospective passengers that the vessel does not comply with applicable fire safety standards due primarily to the wooden construction of passenger berthing areas;

(B) the owner or managing operator of the vessel may not disclaim liability to a passenger for death, injury, or any other loss caused by fire due to the negligence of the owner or managing operator;

(C) the penalties provided in section 3504(c) of this title apply to a violation of this subsection; and

(D) the owner or managing operator of the vessel shall notify the Coast Guard of structural alterations to the vessel, and with regard to those alterations comply with any noncombustible material requirements that the Coast Guard prescribes for nonpublic spaces. Coast Guard requirements shall be consistent with preservation of the historic integrity of the vessel in areas carrying or accessible to passengers or generally visible to the public.


(2) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations under this subsection on the manner in which prospective passengers are to be notified.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 519; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(7)(A), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 444; Pub. L. 102–241, §20, Dec. 19, 1991, 105 Stat. 2216; Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1133, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3985.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3503 46:369(b)

Section 3503 requires the use of fire retardant materials on a vessel having berthing facilities for at least 50 passengers. This requirement in the case of vessels engaged in foreign trade is consistent with our international treaty obligations, which impose extensive and additional fire safety standards. A waiver that grandfathers existing inland river passenger vessels is also included.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104–324 substituted “Before November 1, 2008, this section does not apply to any vessel in operation before January 1, 1968, and operating only within the Boundary Line.” for “Before November 1, 1998, this section does not apply to a vessel in operation before January 1, 1968, and operating only on the inland rivers.”

1991—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 102–241, §20(1), substituted “1998” for “1993”.

Subsec. (b)(1)(D). Pub. L. 102–241, §20(2), added subpar. (D).

1986—Pub. L. 99–307 designated existing provision as subsec. (a), substituted “November 1, 1993” for “November 1, 1988” and inserted “in operation before January 1, 1968, and” after “to a vessel”, and added subsec. (b).

Notification to Prospective Passengers of Noncompliance With Fire-Retardant Standards

Section 1(7)(B) of Pub. L. 99–307 provided that: “Until the regulations required by subclause (A) of this clause [see subsec. (b)(2) of this section] become effective, the owner or managing operator shall notify prospective passengers in all promotional literature and on each ticket that the vessel does not comply with those standards due primarily to the wooden construction of passenger berthing areas.”

§3504. Notification to passengers

(a) A person selling passage on a foreign or domestic passenger vessel having berth or stateroom accommodations for at least 50 passengers and embarking passengers at United States ports for a coastwise or an international voyage shall notify each prospective passenger of the safety standards applicable to the vessel in a manner prescribed by regulation.

(b) All promotional literature or advertising through any medium of communication in the United States offering passage or soliciting passengers for ocean voyages anywhere in the world shall include information similar to the information described in subsection (a) of this section, and shall specify the registry of each vessel named, as a part of the advertisement or description of the voyage. Except for the inclusion of the country of registry of the vessel, this subsection does not apply to voyages by vessels meeting the safety standards described in section 3505 of this title.

(c) A person violating this section or a regulation prescribed under this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $10,000. If the violation involves the sale of tickets for passage, the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, individual in charge, or any other person involved in each violation also is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of $500 for each ticket sold. The vessel on which passage is sold also is liable in rem for a violation of this section or a regulation prescribed under this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 519.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3504 46:362(b)

Section 3504 requires notification to the public of the safety standards that are applicable to certain foreign flag or United States passenger vessels. In addition, all promotional literature or advertising that offers passage or solicits passengers for ocean voyages anywhere in the world shall include a safety standard statement and shall specify the registry of the vessel. If the vessel meets the international standards to which the United States adheres, then the safety standard statement need not be included. In all other cases the type of safety standard statement that must be included is as prescribed by regulation. This section is intended to place the United States public on notice as to the degree of fire safety compliance of a foreign-flag passenger vessel that does not operate or depart from a port or place in the United States but does embark passengers from the United States at nearby foreign ports. Departures from foreign ports are undertaken because the foreign-flag passenger vessel cannot comply with the safety standards applicable to a United States flag passenger vessel.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3503 of this title.

§3505. Prevention of departure

Notwithstanding section 3303(a) 1 of this title, a foreign vessel may not depart from a United States port with passengers who are embarked at that port, if the Secretary finds that the vessel does not comply with the standards stated in the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea to which the United States Government is currently a party.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 520; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5210(b), Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5076.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3505 46:362(c)

Section 3505 prohibits the departure from a United States port or place of any passenger vessel of more than 100 gross tons having berthing for at least 50 passengers, if the vessel does not comply with the international maritime safety standards applicable to United States vessels.

References in Text

Section 3303(a) of this title, referred to in text, was redesignated section 3303 of this title by Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1111, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3970.

Amendments

1992—Pub. L. 102–587 substituted “foreign vessel may not depart” for “foreign or domestic vessel of more than 100 gross tons having berth or stateroom accommodations for at least 50 passengers may not depart”.

International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea

For International Conventions for the Safety of Life at Sea to which the United States has been a party, see section 1602 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters, and notes thereunder.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3504 of this title.

1 See References in Text note below.

§3506. Copies of laws

A master of a passenger vessel shall keep on board a copy of this subtitle, to be provided by the Secretary at reasonable cost. If the master fails to do so, the master is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $200.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 520.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3506 46:492

Section 3506 requires the master of a passenger vessel to keep on board a copy of subtitle II of title 46, U.S.C. Copies of the subtitle shall be provided by the Secretary at reasonable cost.

CHAPTER 37—CARRIAGE OF LIQUID BULK DANGEROUS CARGOES

Sec.
3701.
Definitions.
3702.
Application.
3703.
Regulations.
3703a.
Tank vessel construction standards.
3704.
Coastwise trade vessels.
3705.
Crude oil tanker minimum standards.
3706.
Product carrier minimum standards.
3707.
Tanker minimum standards.
3708.
Self-propelled tank vessel minimum standards.
3709.
Exemptions.
3710.
Evidence of compliance by vessels of the United States.
3711.
Evidence of compliance by foreign vessels.
3712.
Notification of noncompliance.
3713.
Prohibited acts.
3714.
Inspection and examination.
3715.
Lightering.
3716.
Tank washings.
3717.
Marine safety information system.
3718.
Penalties.
3719.
Reduction of oil spills from non-self-propelled tank vessels.1

        

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title IX, §901(c), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3947, added item 3719.

1990—Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4115(c), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 520, added item 3703a.

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 37 consolidates the laws that are applicable to vessels that transport oil or hazardous material in bulk as cargo or cargo residue.

The history of Federal authority to carry out a tank vessel safety program begins with the enactment of the so-called Tank Vessel Act of 1936 which, as amended, is presently codified in section 391a of title 46, United States Code. The 1936 Act remained essentially the same until it was amended by the Ports and Waterways Safety Act of 1972. The 1972 amendment contained more specific standards for the protection of a tank vessel and its crew and added vessel standards to improve the quality of the marine environment. After a rash of tank vessel accidents during the latter part of 1976 and early 1977 within our territorial seas and in nearby coastal waters, there was an outpouring of public attention to the need to protect United States ports and waterways, for the safety of tank vessels, and for the protection of the marine environment. This led to the enactment of the Port and Tanker Safety Act of 1978, which provided broader and more extensive regulatory authority over areas already regulated and over many areas not previously regulated. It provided for improvements in the supervision and control of vessels of all types operating in the navigable waters of the United States, and in the safety of all tank vessels, foreign or domestic, that transport or transfer oil or hazardous cargoes in ports or places subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. The 1978 amendments also reflect, in part, certain tank vessel standards and requirements that have been accepted internationally, in particular those developed by the International Conference on Tanker Safety and Pollution Prevention held in London in February, 1978.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in sections 2102, 3303, 4501, 8501, 8502, 8701, 8702, 8703, 9101, 9102 of this title; title 8 section 1288; title 33 section 1228; title 49 section 5117.

1 So in original. Does not conform to section catchline.

§3701. Definitions

In this chapter—

(1) “existing”, when referring to a type of vessel to which this chapter applies, means a vessel that is not a new vessel.

[(2) Repealed. Pub. L. 100–424, §8(c)(2), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1593.]

(3) “new”, when referring to a type of vessel to which this chapter applies, means a vessel—

(A) for which the building contract is placed after June 1, 1979;

(B) in the absence of a building contract, the keel of which is laid, or which is at a similar stage of construction, after January 1, 1980;

(C) the delivery of which is after June 1, 1982; or

(D) that has undergone a major conversion under a contract made after June 1, 1979, or construction work that began after January 1, 1980, or was completed after June 1, 1982.


(4) “person” means an individual (even if not a citizen or national of the United States), a corporation, partnership, association, or other entity (even if not organized or existing under the laws of a State), the United States Government, a State or local government, a government of a foreign country, or an entity of one of those governments.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 521; Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5102(b)(5), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1927; Pub. L. 100–424, §8(c)(2), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1593.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3701(1) 46:391a(2)(R)
3701(2) 46:391a(2)(P)
3701(3) 46:391a(2)(Q)
3701(4) 46:391a(2)(F)
3701(5) 46:391a(2)(J)
3701(6) 46:391a(2)(K)

Section 3701 contains definitions that are of a special nature with limited applicability to this chapter.

Amendments

1988—Par. (2). Pub. L. 100–424 struck out par. (2) which read as follows: “ ‘major conversion’ means a conversion of an existing vessel that substantially changes the dimensions or carrying capacity of the vessel or changes the type of vessel or substantially prolongs its life or that otherwise so changes the vessel that it is essentially a new vessel, as decided by the Secretary.”

1986—Pars. (5), (6). Pub. L. 99–509 struck out par. (5) defining “State” as including Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands in addition to its meaning under section 2101(36) of this title, and struck out par. (6) defining “United States” as including the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands in addition to its meaning under section 2101(44) of this title.

Effective Date

Chapter effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

§3702. Application

(a) Subject to subsections (b)–(e) of this section, this chapter applies to a tank vessel.

(b) This chapter does not apply to a documented vessel that would be subject to this chapter only because of the transfer of fuel from the fuel supply tanks of the vessel to offshore drilling or production facilities in the oil industry if the vessel is—

(1) not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title;

(2) not a tanker; and

(3) in the service of oil exploitation.


(c) This chapter does not apply to a fishing or fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title when engaged only in the fishing industry.

(d) This chapter does not apply to a fish processing vessel of not more than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title. However, the vessel is subject to regulation by the Secretary when carrying flammable or combustible liquid cargo in bulk.

(e) This chapter does not apply to a foreign vessel on innocent passage on the navigable waters of the United States.

(f) This chapter does not apply to an oil spill response vessel if—

(1) the vessel is used only in response-related activities; or

(2) the vessel is—

(A) not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title;

(B) designated in its certificate of inspection as an oil spill response vessel; and

(C) engaged in response-related activities.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 521; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(6), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 446; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §714, title XI, §1104(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3936, 3966.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3702 46:391a

Section 3702, with certain exceptions, makes this chapter applicable to any tank vessel operating in the navigable waters of the United States or transferring oil or hazardous materials in any port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, and which carries oil or any hazardous materials in bulk as cargo or in residue, regardless of tonnage, size or manner of propulsion; whether it is self-propelled or not; whether it is carrying freight or passengers for hire or not; and whether it is a vessel of the United States or a foreign vessel.

It exempts certain small vessels documented in the service of oil exploitation, certain small tender and fishing vessels used in the Northwest salmon or crab fisheries, certain vessels used in the processing and assembling of fishery products used in the Northwest fisheries, public vessels, and foreign vessels engaged on innocent passage on the navigable waters of the United States. However, processing vessels, while not treated as tank vessels, are still subject to regulation when carrying flammable or combustible liquid cargo in bulk.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §714(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 104–324, §714(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 104–324, §714(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “5,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 104–324, §1104(b), added subsec. (f).

1984—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(6)(A), substituted “This chapter does not apply to a fishing or fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons when engaged only in the fishing industry” for “This chapter does not apply to a cannery tender, fishing tender, or fishing vessel of not more than 500 gross tons, used in the salmon or crab fisheries of Alaska, Oregon, or Washington, when engaged only in the fishing industry”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(6)(B), substituted “This chapter does not apply to a fish processing vessel of not more than 5,000 gross tons” for “This chapter does not apply to a vessel of not more than 5,000 gross tons used in processing and assembling fishery products of the fisheries of Alaska, Oregon, and Washington”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 8703 of this title; title 49 section 5117.

§3703. Regulations

(a) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations for the design, construction, alteration, repair, maintenance, operation, equipping, personnel qualification, and manning of vessels to which this chapter applies, that may be necessary for increased protection against hazards to life and property, for navigation and vessel safety, and for enhanced protection of the marine environment. The Secretary may prescribe different regulations applicable to vessels engaged in the domestic trade, and also may prescribe regulations that exceed standards set internationally. Regulations prescribed by the Secretary under this subsection are in addition to regulations prescribed under other laws that may apply to any of those vessels. Regulations prescribed under this subsection shall include requirements about—

(1) superstructures, hulls, cargo holds or tanks, fittings, equipment, appliances, propulsion machinery, auxiliary machinery, and boilers;

(2) the handling or stowage of cargo, the manner of handling or stowage of cargo, and the machinery and appliances used in the handling or stowage;

(3) equipment and appliances for lifesaving, fire protection, and prevention and mitigation of damage to the marine environment;

(4) the manning of vessels and the duties, qualifications, and training of the officers and crew;

(5) improvements in vessel maneuvering and stopping ability and other features that reduce the possibility of marine casualties;

(6) the reduction of cargo loss if a marine casualty occurs; and

(7) the reduction or elimination of discharges during ballasting, deballasting, tank cleaning, cargo handling, or other such activity.


(b) In prescribing regulations under subsection (a) of this section, the Secretary shall consider the types and grades of cargo permitted to be on board a tank vessel.

(c) In prescribing regulations under subsection (a) of this section, the Secretary shall establish procedures for consulting with, and receiving and considering the views of—

(1) interested departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the United States Government;

(2) officials of State and local governments;

(3) representatives of port and harbor authorities and associations;

(4) representatives of environmental groups; and

(5) other interested parties knowledgeable or experienced in dealing with problems involving vessel safety, port and waterways safety, and protection of the marine environment.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 522.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3703 46:391a(6)

46:391a(12)

Section 3703 requires the Secretary to issue regulations to implement this section. Specific items are listed to be included within the regulations issued. The regulatory authority must be exercised under the Administrative Procedure Act and, in prescribing these regulations, the Secretary must consider the kinds and grades of cargo carried on board. Furthermore, in addition to any requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act, the Secretary must establish specific consultation procedures for considering the views of various specified interested officials, groups, and individuals. The procedures are intended to provide for consultation as early as possible in the regulatory process.

Studies Addressing Various Sources of Oil Spill Risk

Pub. L. 104–324, title IX, §903, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3947, provided that:

“(a) Study of Group-5 Fuel Oil Spills.—

“(1) Definition.—In this subsection, the term ‘group-5 fuel oil’ means a petroleum-based oil that has a specific gravity of greater than 1.0.

“(2) Coordination of study.—The Secretary of Transportation shall coordinate with the Marine Board of the National Research Council to conduct a study of the relative environmental and public health risks posed by discharges of group-5 fuel oil.

“(3) Matters to be included.—The study under this subsection shall include a review and analysis of—

“(A) the specific risks posed to the public health or welfare of the United States, including fish, shellfish and wildlife, public and private property, shorelines, beaches, habitat, and other natural resources under the jurisdiction or control of the United States, as a result of an actual or threatened discharge of group-5 fuel oil from a vessel or facility;

“(B) cleanup technologies currently available to address actual or threatened discharge of group-5 fuel oil; and

“(C) any technological and financial barriers that prevent the prompt remediation of discharges of group-5 fuel oil.

“(4) Report.—Not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 19, 1996], the Secretary of Transportation shall submit to the Committee on Environment and Public Works and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate, and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives a report on the results of the study under this subsection.

“(5) Rulemaking.—If the Secretary of Transportation determines, based on the results of the study under this subsection, that there are significant risks to public health or the environment resulting from the actual or threatened discharge of group-5 fuel oil from a vessel or facility that cannot be technologically or economically addressed by existing or anticipated cleanup efforts, the Secretary may initiate a rulemaking to take such action as is necessary to abate the threat.

“(b) Study of Automatic Fueling Shutoff Equipment.—

“(1) Coordination of study.—The Secretary of Transportation shall coordinate with the Marine Board of the National Research Council to conduct a study of the unintentional or accidental discharge of fuel oil during lightering or fuel loading or off-loading activity.

“(2) Matters to be included.—The study under this subsection shall include a review and analysis of current monitoring and fueling practices to determine the need for automatic fuel shutoff equipment to prevent the accidental discharge of fuel oil, and whether such equipment is needed as a supplement to or replacement of existing preventive equipment or procedures.

“(3) Report.—Not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 19, 1996], the Secretary of Transportation shall submit to the Committee on Environment and Public Works and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives a report on the results of the study under this subsection.

“(4) Rulemaking.—If the Secretary of Transportation determines, based on the results of the study conducted under this subsection, that the use of automatic oil shutoff equipment is necessary to prevent the actual or threatened discharge of oil during lightering or fuel loading or off[-]loading activity, the Secretary may initiate a rulemaking to take such action as is necessary to abate a threat to public health or the environment.

“(c) Lightering Study.—The Secretary of Transportation shall coordinate with the Marine Board of the National Research Council on a study into the actual incidence and risk of oil spills from lightering operations off the coast of the United States. Among other things, the study shall address the manner in which existing regulations are serving to reduce oil spill risks. The study shall take into account current or proposed international rules and standards and also include recommendations on measures that would be likely to further reduce the risks of oil spills from lightering operations. Not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 19, 1996], the Secretary shall submit a report on the study to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives.”

Existing Tank Vessel Research

Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1134, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3985, provided that:

“(a) Funding.—The Secretary of Transportation shall take steps to allocate funds appropriated for research, development, testing, and evaluation, including the combination of funds from any source available and authorized for this purpose, to ensure that any Government-sponsored project intended to evaluate double hull alternatives that provide equal or greater protection to the marine environment, or interim solutions to remediate potential environmental damage resulting from oil spills from existing tank vessels, commenced prior to the date of enactment of this section [Oct. 19, 1996], is fully funded for completion by the end of fiscal year 1997. Any vessel construction or repair necessary to carry out the purpose of this section must be performed in a shipyard located in the United States.

“(b) Use of Public Vessels.—The Secretary may provide vessels owned by, or demise chartered to, and operated by the Government and not engaged in commercial service, without reimbursement, for use in and the support of projects sponsored by the Government for research, development, testing, evaluation, and demonstration of new or improved technologies that are effective in preventing or mitigating oil discharges and protecting the environment.”

Oil Spill Prevention and Response Technology Test and Evaluation Program

Pub. L. 103–206, title III, §310, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2425, provided that:

“(a) Not later than 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act [Dec. 20, 1993], the Secretary of Transportation shall establish a program to evaluate the technological feasibility and environmental benefits of having tank vessels carry oil spill prevention and response technology. To implement the program the Secretary shall—

“(1) publish in the Federal Register an invitation for submission of proposals including plans and procedures for testing; and

“(2) review and evaluate technology using, to the maximum extent possible, existing evaluation and performance standards.

“(b) The Secretary shall, to the maximum extent possible, incorporate in the program established in subsection (a), the results of existing studies and evaluations of oil spill prevention and response technology carried on tank vessels.

“(c) Not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act [Dec. 20, 1993], the Secretary shall evaluate the results of the program established in subsection (a) and submit a report to Congress with recommendations on the feasibility and environmental benefits of, and appropriate equipment and utilization standards for, requiring tank vessels to carry oil spill prevention and response equipment.

“(d) Not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act [Dec. 20, 1993], the Secretary shall evaluate and report to the Congress on the feasibility of using segregated ballast tanks for emergency transfer of cargo and storage of recovered oil.”

Regulations Requiring Periodic Gauging of Plating Thickness for Oil Carrying Commercial Vessels

Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4109, Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 515, provided that: “Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990], the Secretary shall issue regulations for vessels constructed or adapted to carry, or that carry, oil in bulk as cargo or cargo residue—

“(1) establishing minimum standards for plating thickness; and

“(2) requiring, consistent with generally recognized principles of international law, periodic gauging of the plating thickness of all such vessels over 30 years old operating on the navigable waters or the waters of the exclusive economic zone.”

Regulations Requiring Use of Overfill and Tank Level or Monitoring Devices on Oil Carrying Commercial Vessels

Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4110, Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 515, provided that:

“(a) Standards.—Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990], the Secretary shall establish, by regulation, minimum standards for devices for warning persons of overfills and tank levels of oil in cargo tanks and devices for monitoring the pressure of oil cargo tanks.

“(b) Use.—Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990], the Secretary shall issue regulations establishing, consistent with generally recognized principles of international law, requirements concerning the use of—

“(1) overfill devices, and

“(2) tank level or pressure monitoring devices,

which are referred to in subsection (a) and which meet the standards established by the Secretary under subsection (a), on vessels constructed or adapted to carry, or that carry, oil in bulk as cargo or cargo residue on the navigable waters and the waters of the exclusive economic zone.”

Tanker Navigation Safety Standards Study

Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4111, Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 515, directed Secretary, not later than 2 years after Aug. 18, 1990, to conduct a study and report to Congress on whether existing laws and regulations are adequate to ensure safe navigation of vessels transporting oil or hazardous substances in bulk on navigable waters and waters of the exclusive economic zone.

Rules Governing Operation of Vessels on Auto-Pilot or With Unattended Engine Room

Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4114(a), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 517, provided that: “In order to protect life, property, and the environment, the Secretary shall initiate a rulemaking proceeding within 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990] to define the conditions under, and designate the waters upon, which tank vessels subject to section 3703 of title 46, United States Code, may operate in the navigable waters with the auto-pilot engaged or with an unattended engine room.”

Regulations Requiring Escorts for Certain Tankers; “Tanker” Defined

Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4116(c), (d), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 523, provided that:

“(c) Escorts for Certain Tankers.—Not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990], the Secretary shall initiate issuance of regulations under section 3703(a)(3) of title 46, United States Code, to define those areas, including Prince William Sound, Alaska, and Rosario Strait and Puget Sound, Washington (including those portions of the Strait of Juan de Fuca east of Port Angeles, Haro Strait, and the Strait of Georgia subject to United States jurisdiction), on which single hulled tankers over 5,000 gross tons transporting oil in bulk shall be escorted by at least two towing vessels (as defined under section 2101 of title 46, United States Code) or other vessels considered appropriate by the Secretary.

“(d) Tanker Defined.—In this section [amending section 8502 of this title] the term ‘tanker’ has the same meaning the term has in section 2101 of title 46, United States Code.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in title 42 section 7511b.

§3703a. Tank vessel construction standards

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, a vessel to which this chapter applies shall be equipped with a double hull—

(1) if it is constructed or adapted to carry, or carries, oil in bulk as cargo or cargo residue; and

(2) when operating on the waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, including the Exclusive Economic Zone.


(b) This section does not apply to—

(1) a vessel used only to respond to a discharge of oil or a hazardous substance;

(2) a vessel of less than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title equipped with a double containment system determined by the Secretary to be as effective as a double hull for the prevention of a discharge of oil;

(3) before January 1, 2015—

(A) a vessel unloading oil in bulk at a deepwater port licensed under the Deepwater Port Act of 1974 (33 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.); or

(B) a delivering vessel that is offloading in lightering activities—

(i) within a lightering zone established under section 3715(b)(5) of this title; and

(ii) more than 60 miles from the baseline from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured;


(4) a vessel documented under chapter 121 of this title that was equipped with a double hull before August 12, 1992;

(5) a barge of less than 1,500 gross tons (as measured under chapter 145 of this title) carrying refined petroleum product in bulk as cargo in or adjacent to waters of the Bering Sea, Chukchi Sea, and Arctic Ocean and waters tributary thereto and in the waters of the Aleutian Islands and the Alaskan Peninsula west of 155 degrees west longitude; or

(6) a vessel in the National Defense Reserve Fleet pursuant to section 11 of the Merchant Ship Sales Act of 1946 (50 App. U.S.C. 1744).


(c)(1) In this subsection, the age of a vessel is determined from the later of the date on which the vessel—

(A) is delivered after original construction;

(B) is delivered after completion of a major conversion; or

(C) had its appraised salvage value determined by the Coast Guard and is qualified for documentation under section 4136 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (46 App. U.S.C. 14).


(2) A vessel of less than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title for which a building contract or contract for major conversion was placed before June 30, 1990, and that is delivered under that contract before January 1, 1994, and a vessel of less than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title that had its appraised salvage value determined by the Coast Guard before June 30, 1990, and that qualifies for documentation under section 4136 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (46 App. U.S.C. 14) before January 1, 1994, may not operate in the navigable waters or the Exclusive Economic Zone of the United States after January 1, 2015, unless the vessel is equipped with a double hull or with a double containment system determined by the Secretary to be as effective as a double hull for the prevention of a discharge of oil.

(3) A vessel for which a building contract or contract for major conversion was placed before June 30, 1990, and that is delivered under that contract before January 1, 1994, and a vessel that had its appraised salvage value determined by the Coast Guard before June 30, 1990, and that qualifies for documentation under section 4136 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (46 App. U.S.C. 14) before January 1, 1994, may not operate in the navigable waters or Exclusive Economic Zone of the United States unless equipped with a double hull—

(A) in the case of a vessel of at least 5,000 gross tons but less than 15,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(i) after January 1, 1995, if the vessel is 40 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 45 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(ii) after January 1, 1996, if the vessel is 39 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 44 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(iii) after January 1, 1997, if the vessel is 38 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 43 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(iv) after January 1, 1998, if the vessel is 37 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 42 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(v) after January 1, 1999, if the vessel is 36 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 41 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(vi) after January 1, 2000, if the vessel is 35 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 40 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides; and

(vii) after January 1, 2005, if the vessel is 25 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 30 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;


(B) in the case of a vessel of at least 15,000 gross tons but less than 30,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(i) after January 1, 1995, if the vessel is 40 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 45 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(ii) after January 1, 1996, if the vessel is 38 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 43 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(iii) after January 1, 1997, if the vessel is 36 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 41 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(iv) after January 1, 1998, if the vessel is 34 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 39 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(v) after January 1, 1999, if the vessel is 32 years old or older and has a single hull, or 37 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(vi) after January 1, 2000, if the vessel is 30 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 35 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(vii) after January 1, 2001, if the vessel is 29 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 34 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(viii) after January 1, 2002, if the vessel is 28 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 33 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(ix) after January 1, 2003, if the vessel is 27 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 32 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(x) after January 1, 2004, if the vessel is 26 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 31 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides; and

(xi) after January 1, 2005, if the vessel is 25 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 30 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides; and


(C) in the case of a vessel of at least 30,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title—

(i) after January 1, 1995, if the vessel is 28 years old or older and has a single hull, or 33 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(ii) after January 1, 1996, if the vessel is 27 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 32 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(iii) after January 1, 1997, if the vessel is 26 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 31 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(iv) after January 1, 1998, if the vessel is 25 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 30 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides;

(v) after January 1, 1999, if the vessel is 24 years old or older and has a single hull, or 29 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides; and

(vi) after January 1, 2000, if the vessel is 23 years old or older and has a single hull, or is 28 years old or older and has a double bottom or double sides.


(4) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section—

(A) a vessel that has a single hull may not operate after January 1, 2010; and

(B) a vessel that has a double bottom or double sides may not operate after January 1, 2015.


(d) The operation of barges described in subsection (b)(5) outside waters described in that subsection shall be on any conditions as the Secretary may require.

(e)(1) For the purposes of this section and except as otherwise provided in paragraphs (2) and (3) of this subsection, the gross tonnage of a vessel shall be the gross tonnage that would have been recognized by the Secretary on July 1, 1997, as the tonnage measured under section 14502 of this title, or as an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title.

(2)(A) The Secretary may waive the application of paragraph (1) to a tank vessel if—

(i) the owner of the tank vessel applies to the Secretary for the waiver before January 1, 1998;

(ii) the Secretary determines that—

(I) the owner of the tank vessel has entered into a binding agreement to alter the tank vessel in a shipyard in the United States to reduce the gross tonnage of the tank vessel by converting a portion of the cargo tanks of the tank vessel into protectively located segregated ballast tanks; and

(II) that conversion will result in a significant reduction in the risk of a discharge of oil;


(iii) at least 60 days before the date of the issuance of the waiver, the Secretary—

(I) publishes notice that the Secretary has received the application and made the determinations required by clause (ii), including a description of the agreement entered into pursuant to clause (ii)(I); and

(II) provides an opportunity for submission of comments regarding the application; and


(iv) the alterations referred to in clause (ii)(I) are completed before the later of—

(I) the date by which the first special survey of the tank vessel is required to be completed after the date of the enactment of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1998; or

(II) July 1, 1999.


(B) A waiver under subparagraph (A) shall not be effective after the expiration of the 3-year period beginning on the first date on which the tank vessel would have been prohibited by subsection (c) from operating if the alterations referred to in subparagraph (A)(ii)(I) were not made.

(3) This subsection does not apply to a tank vessel that, before July 1, 1997, had undergone, or was the subject of a contract for, alterations that reduce the gross tonnage of the tank vessel, as shown by reliable evidence acceptable to the Secretary.

(Added Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4115(a), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 517; amended Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §715, title XI, §1103, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3937, 3966; Pub. L. 105–85, div. C, title XXXVI, §3606, Nov. 18, 1997, 111 Stat. 2077.)

References in Text

The Deepwater Port Act of 1974, referred to in subsec. (b)(3)(A), is Pub. L. 93–627, Jan. 3, 1975, 88 Stat. 2126, as amended, which is classified generally to chapter 29 (§1501 et seq.) of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1501 of Title 33 and Tables.

The date of the enactment of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1998, referred to in subsec. (e)(2)(A)(iv)(I), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 105–85, which was approved Nov. 18, 1997.

Amendments

1997—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 105–85 added subsec. (e).

1996—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 104–324, §715(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “5,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (b)(4) to (6). Pub. L. 104–324, §1103(1), added pars. (4) to (6).

Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 104–324, §715(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “5,000 gross tons” in two places.

Subsec. (c)(3)(A). Pub. L. 104–324, §715(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “15,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c)(3)(B). Pub. L. 104–324, §715(4), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “30,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c)(3)(C). Pub. L. 104–324, §715(5), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “30,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 104–324, §1103(2), added subsec. (d).

Effective Date

Section applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as a note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Tank Vessels Over 5,000 Gross Tons To Comply Until January 1, 2015, With Environmentally Protective Structural and Operational Requirements

Section 4115(b) of Pub. L. 101–380 provided that: “The Secretary shall, within 12 months after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990], complete a rulemaking proceeding and issue a final rule to require that tank vessels over 5,000 gross tons affected by section 3703a of title 46, United States Code, as added by this section, comply until January 1, 2015, with structural and operational requirements that the Secretary determines will provide as substantial protection to the environment as is economically and technologically feasible.”

Study on Other Structural and Operational Tank Vessel Requirements

Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4115(e), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 520, as amended by Pub. L. 105–383, title IV, §423, Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3440, provided that:

“(1) Other requirements.—Not later than 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990], the Secretary shall determine, based on recommendations from the National Academy of Sciences or other qualified organizations, whether other structural and operational tank vessel requirements will provide protection to the marine environment equal to or greater than that provided by double hulls, and shall report to the Congress that determination and recommendations for legislative action.

“(2) Review and assessment.—The Secretary shall—

“(A) periodically review recommendations from the National Academy of Sciences and other qualified organizations on methods for further increasing the environmental and operational safety of tank vessels;

“(B) not later than 5 years after the date of enactment of this Act [Aug. 18, 1990], assess the impact of this section on the safety of the marine environment and the economic viability and operational makeup of the maritime oil transportation industry; and

“(C) report the results of the review and assessment to the Congress with recommendations for legislative or other action.

“(3)(A) The Secretary of Transportation shall coordinate with the Marine Board of the National Research Council to conduct the necessary research and development of a rationally based equivalency assessment approach, which accounts for the overall environmental performance of alternative tank vessel designs. Notwithstanding the Coast Guard opinion of the application of sections 101 and 311 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 and 1321), the intent of this study is to establish an equivalency evaluation procedure that maintains a high standard of environmental protection, while encouraging innovative ship design. The study shall include:

“(i) development of a generalized cost spill data base, which includes all relevant costs such as clean-up costs and environmental impact costs as a function of spill size;

“(ii) refinement of the probability density functions used to establish the extent of vessel damage, based on the latest available historical damage statistics, and current research on the crash worthiness of tank vessel structures;

“(iii) development of a rationally based approach for calculating an environmental index, to assess overall outflow performance due to collisions and groundings; and

“(iv) application of the proposed index to double hull tank vessels and alternative designs currently under consideration.

“(B) A Marine Board committee shall be established not later that [sic] 2 months after the date of the enactment of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1998 [Nov. 13, 1998]. The Secretary of Transportation shall submit to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure in the House of Representatives a report on the results of the study not later than 12 months after the date of the enactment of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1998.

“(C) Of the amounts authorized by section 1012(a)(5)(A) of this Act [33 U.S.C. 2712(a)(5)(A)], $500,000 is authorized to carry out the activities under subparagraphs (A) and (B) of this paragraph.”

Territorial Sea of United States

For extension of territorial sea of United States, see Proc. No. 5928, set out as a note under section 1331 of Title 43, Public Lands.

Contiguous Zone of United States

For extension of contiguous zone of United States, see Proc. No. 7219, Sept. 2, 1999, 64 F.R. 48701, set out as a note under section 1331 of Title 43, Public Lands.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3715 of this title; title 50 App. section 1744.

§3704. Coastwise trade vessels

A segregated ballast tank, a crude oil washing system, or an inert gas system, required by this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter, on a vessel entitled to engage in the coastwise trade under section 27 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (46 App. U.S.C. 883), shall be installed in the United States (except the trust territories). A vessel failing to comply with this section may not engage in the coastwise trade.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 522.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3704 46:391a(7)

Section 3704 requires any tank vessel that is entitled to engage in the coastwise trade to install certain equipment in the United States under the penalty of losing coastwise trading privileges if the installation work is done in a foreign country.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3709 of this title; section 1185 of Appendix to this title.

§3705. Crude oil tanker minimum standards

(a) A new crude oil tanker of at least 20,000 deadweight tons shall be equipped with—

(1) protectively located segregated ballast tanks;

(2) a crude oil washing system; and

(3) a cargo tank protection system consisting of a fixed deck froth system and a fixed inert gas system.


(b)(1) An existing crude oil tanker of at least 40,000 deadweight tons shall be equipped with—

(A) segregated ballast tanks; or

(B) a crude oil washing system.


(2) Compliance with paragraph (1) of this subsection may be delayed until June 1, 1985, for any tanker of less than 70,000 deadweight tons that has dedicated clean ballast tanks.

(c) An existing crude oil tanker of at least 20,000 deadweight tons but less than 40,000 deadweight tons, and at least 15 years of age, shall be equipped with segregated ballast tanks or a crude oil washing system before January 2, 1986, or the date on which the tanker reaches 15 years of age, whichever is later.

(d) An existing crude oil tanker of at least 20,000 deadweight tons shall be equipped with an inert gas system. However, for a crude oil tanker of less than 40,000 deadweight tons not fitted with high capacity tank washing machines, the Secretary may grant an exemption if the vessel's owner can show clearly that compliance would be unreasonable and impracticable due to the vessel's design characteristics.

(e) A crude oil tanker engaged in transferring oil from an offshore oil exploitation or production facility on the Outer Continental Shelf of the United States shall be equipped with segregated ballast tanks, or may operate with dedicated clean ballast tanks or special ballast arrangements. However, the tanker shall comply with other applicable minimum standards of this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 523.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3705(a) 46:391a(7)(A)
3705(b) 46:391a(7)(D)
3705(c) 46:391a(7)(E)
3705(d) 46:391a(7)(F)
3705(e) 46:391a(7)(M)

Section 3705 requires compliance with certain minimum standards by a crude oil tanker, which is self-propelled. In general, the minimum required standards are consistent with those international standards that have been adopted as Protocols to the 1974 Safety of Life at Sea Convention and the 1973 Marine Pollution Convention.

Section 3705(a) requires new crude oil tankers of 20,000 deadweight tons or above to have protectively located segregated ballast tanks, a crude oil washing system, and a specified cargo tank protection system.

Section 3705(b) requires existing crude oil tankers of 40,000 deadweight tons or above to have segregated ballast tanks or a crude oil washing system. Compliance may be delayed until June 1, 1985 for smaller tankers that have dedicated clean ballast tanks.

Section 3705(c) requires existing crude oil tankers of 20,000 deadweight tons or above, but less than 40,000 deadweight tons, that are 15 years or older, to have segregated ballast tanks or a crude oil washing system by January 1, 1985 or if less than 15 years old, by the date on which it reaches 15 years of age.

Section 3705(d) requires existing crude oil tankers of 20,000 deadweight tons or above, to install an inert gas system. An exemption for crude oil tankers of less than 40,000 deadweight tons not fitted with high-capacity tank washing machines may be granted by the Secretary, only if it is demonstrated that compliance would be unreasonable and impracticable due to the vessel's design characteristics.

Section 3705(e) requires existing crude oil tankers of 20,000 deadweight tons or above, engaged in the transfer of oil from Outer Continental Shelf oil exploitation or production facilities, to have segregated ballast tanks or be operated with dedicated clean ballast tanks or special ballast arrangements.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3709 of this title; section 1185 of Appendix to this title.

§3706. Product carrier minimum standards

(a) A new product carrier of at least 30,000 deadweight tons shall be equipped with protectively located segregated ballast tanks.

(b) A new product carrier of at least 20,000 deadweight tons shall be equipped with a cargo tank protection system consisting of a fixed deck froth system and a fixed inert gas system or, if the product carrier carries dedicated products incompatible with the cargo tank protection system, an alternate protection system authorized by the Secretary.

(c) An existing product carrier of at least 40,000 deadweight tons shall be equipped with segregated ballast tanks or may operate with dedicated clean ballast tanks.

(d) An existing product carrier of at least 20,000 deadweight tons but less than 40,000 deadweight tons, and at least 15 years of age, shall be equipped with segregated ballast tanks or may operate with dedicated clean ballast tanks before January 2, 1986, or the date on which it reaches 15 years of age, whichever is later.

(e) An existing product carrier of at least 40,000 deadweight tons, or an existing product carrier of at least 20,000 deadweight tons but less than 40,000 deadweight tons that is fitted with high-capacity tank washing machines, shall be equipped with an inert gas system.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 523.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3706(a) 46:391a(7)(B)
3706(b) 46:391a(7)(C)
3706(c) 46:391a(7)(G)
3706(d) 46:391a(7)(H)
3706(e) 46:391a(7)(I)

Section 3706 requires compliance with certain minimum standards by a product carrier, which is a self-propelled tank vessel.

Section 3706(a) requires new product carriers of 30,000 deadweight tons or above, to have protectively located segregated ballast tanks.

Section 3706(b) requires new product carriers of 20,000 deadweight tons or above, to have a cargo tank protection system consisting of a fixed deck froth system or a fixed inert gas system. If the products carried are incompatible with the cargo tank protection system, then an alternative protection system may be authorized.

Section 3706(c) requires existing product carriers of 40,000 deadweight tons or above, to have segregated ballast tanks or to operate with dedicated clean ballast tanks.

Section 3706(d) requires existing product carriers of 20,000 deadweight tons or above, but less than 40,000 deadweight tons, that are 15 years or older, to have segregated ballast tanks by January 1, 1985, or on the date on which it reaches 15 years of age or, in the alternative, that the vessel operate with dedicated clean ballast tanks.

Section 3706(e) requires existing product carriers of 40,000 deadweight tons or above, or to existing product carriers, fitted with high-capacity tank washing machines, of 20,000 deadweight tons but less than 40,000 deadweight tons, to install an inert gas system.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3709 of this title; section 1185 of Appendix to this title.

§3707. Tanker minimum standards

(a) A new tanker of at least 10,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title shall be equipped with—

(1) 2 remote steering gear control systems operable separately from the navigating bridge;

(2) the main steering gear control in the steering gear compartment;

(3) means of communications and rudder angle indicators on the navigating bridge, a remote steering gear control station, and the steering gear compartment;

(4) at least 2 identical and adequate power units for the main steering gear;

(5) an alternative and adequate power supply, either from an emergency source of electrical power or from another independent source of power located in the steering gear compartment; and

(6) means of automatic starting and stopping of power units with attendant alarms at all steering stations.


(b) An existing tanker of at least 10,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title shall be equipped with—

(1) 2 remote steering gear control systems operable separately from the navigating bridge;

(2) the main steering gear control in the steering gear compartment; and

(3) means of communications and rudder angle indicators on the navigating bridge, a remote steering gear control station, and the steering gear compartment.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 524; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §716, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3937.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3707(a) 46:391a(7)(K)
3707(b) 46:391a(7)(L)

Section 3707 requires compliance with certain minimum standards by a tanker, which is a self-propelled tank vessel.

Section 3707(a) requires new tankers of 10,000 gross tons or above, to have two remote steering gear control systems, a main steering gear control in the steering gear compartment, a means of communications and rudder angle indicators at specified locations, two or more specified power units for the main steering gear, an alternative and adequate power supply of specified characteristics, and a means of automatic operation of power units, with attendant alarms at all steering stations.

Section 3707(b) requires existing tankers of 10,000 gross tons or above, to have two remote steering gear control systems, a main steering gear control in the steering gear compartment, and a means of communication and rudder angle indicators at specified locations.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104–324, §716(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “10,000 gross tons” in introductory provisions.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324, §716(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “10,000 gross tons”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 1185 of Appendix to this title.

§3708. Self-propelled tank vessel minimum standards

A self-propelled tank vessel of at least 10,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title shall be equipped with—

(1) a dual radar system with short-range and long-range capabilities, each with true-north features;

(2) an electronic relative motion analyzer that is at least functionally equivalent to equipment complying with specifications established by the Secretary of Transportation;

(3) an electronic position-fixing device;

(4) adequate communications equipment;

(5) a sonic depth finder;

(6) a gyrocompass; and

(7) up-to-date charts.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 524; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §717, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3937.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3708 46:391a(7)(J)

Section 3708 requires compliance with certain minimum standards by a self-propelled tank vessel. These requirements apply to any tank vessel of 10,000 gross tons or above with no distinction being made as to whether or not the vessel is “primarily” constructed or adapted to carry oil or hazardous material in bulk in the cargo spaces. These vessels are required to be equipped with a dual radar system, a computerized relative motion analyzer, an electronic position fixing device, adequate communications equipment, a sonic depth finder, a gyrocompass, and up-to-date charts.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “10,000 gross tons”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 1185 of Appendix to this title.

§3709. Exemptions

The Secretary may exempt a vessel from the minimum requirements established by sections 3704–3706 of this title for segregated ballast, crude oil washing, and dedicated clean ballast if the Secretary decides that shore-based reception facilities are a preferred method of handling ballast and that adequate facilities are readily available.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 524.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3709 46:391a(7)(N)

Section 3709 provides the Secretary with the authority to exempt certain minimum tanker requirements of sections 3704, 3705, and 3706 when shorebased reception facilities are a better way of handling ballast and when the facilities are adequate and readily available.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 1185 of Appendix to this title.

§3710. Evidence of compliance by vessels of the United States

(a) A vessel of the United States to which this chapter applies that has on board oil or hazardous material in bulk as cargo or cargo residue must have a certificate of inspection issued under this part, endorsed to indicate that the vessel complies with regulations prescribed under this chapter.

(b) Each certificate endorsed under this section is valid for not more than 5 years and may be renewed as specified by the Secretary. In appropriate circumstances, the Secretary may issue a temporary certificate valid for not more than 30 days. A certificate shall be suspended or revoked if the Secretary finds that the vessel does not comply with the conditions under which the certificate was issued.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 524; Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §605(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3931.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3710 46:391a(8)(A)

46:391a(8)(E)

Section 3710 prohibits any vessels of the United States subject to this chapter from having on board oil or hazardous material in bulk as cargo or in residue, unless it has a required Certificate of Inspection endorsed to indicate vessel compliance with applicable regulations. Certificates shall be valid for a period not to exceed two years and may be renewed as specified by the Secretary. The Secretary may issue temporary certificates of not more than thirty days duration and may revoke or suspend any certificate under designated circumstances.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324 substituted “5 years” for “24 months”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3715 of this title.

§3711. Evidence of compliance by foreign vessels

(a) A foreign vessel to which this chapter applies may operate on the navigable waters of the United States, or transfer oil or hazardous material in a port or place under the jurisdiction of the United States, only if the vessel has been issued a certificate of compliance by the Secretary. The Secretary may issue the certificate only after the vessel has been examined and found to be in compliance with this chapter and regulations prescribed under this chapter. The Secretary may accept any part of a certificate, endorsement, or document, issued by the government of a foreign country under a treaty, convention, or other international agreement to which the United States is a party, as a basis for issuing a certificate of compliance.

(b) A certificate issued under this section is valid for not more than 24 months and may be renewed as specified by the Secretary. In appropriate circumstances, the Secretary may issue a temporary certificate valid for not more than 30 days.

(c) A certificate shall be suspended or revoked if the Secretary finds that the vessel does not comply with the conditions under which the certificate was issued.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 525.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3711 46:391a(8)(B)

46:391a(8)(C)

46:391a(8)(E)

Section 3711 prohibits any foreign vessel from operating on the navigable waters of the United States or from transferring oil or hazardous material in any port or place under the jurisdiction of the United States, unless it has a certificate of compliance issued by the Secretary indicating that the vessel has been examined and found to be in compliance with the provisions of the applicable regulations. It also authorizes the Secretary to accept, in whole or in part, an appropriate foreign certificate issued pursuant to any international agreement to which the United States is a party, as a basis for issuing the certificate of compliance. This means that the Secretary does not have to accept foreign certificates as evidence of compliance, but may take additional action to assure compliance with applicable domestic laws and regulations and international treaty provisions.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3715 of this title.

§3712. Notification of noncompliance

The Secretary shall notify the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel found not to be in compliance with a regulation prescribed under this part and state how compliance may be achieved.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 525.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3712 46:391a(8)(A)

46:391a(8)(B)

Section 3712 requires the Secretary to notify appropriate parties when a vessel is found not to be in compliance with applicable requirements, standards, or regulations and what remedial steps must be taken in order to comply with them.

§3713. Prohibited acts

(a) A person may not—

(1) violate this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter;

(2) refuse to permit any official, authorized by the Secretary to enforce this chapter, to board a vessel or to enter a shore area, place, or premises, under a person's control to make an inspection under this chapter; or

(3) refuse to obey a lawful directive issued under this chapter.


(b) A vessel to which this chapter applies may not—

(1) operate on the navigable waters of the United States or use a port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States when not in compliance with this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter;

(2) fail to comply with a lawful directive issued under this chapter; or

(3) carry a type or grade of oil or hazardous material in bulk as cargo or cargo residue unless its certificate is endorsed to allow that carriage.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 525.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3713 46:391a(13)

Section 3713(a) prohibits any person from violating any provision of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under its authority. It prohibits the refusal to permit authorized officials to board a vessel or to enter a shore area for the purposes of inspection of the vessel or premises. It also prohibits the refusal to obey any lawful directive issued under this chapter.

Section 3713(b) prohibits any vessel, subject to the provisions of this chapter from operating on the navigable waters of the United States, or from using any port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States while not in compliance with any provision of applicable law or regulation. It further prohibits any vessel from failing to comply with a lawful directive issued pursuant to the authority of this chapter. It also prohibits the vessel from carrying oil or hazardous material as cargo or cargo residue unless its certificate is so endorsed to permit its carriage.

§3714. Inspection and examination

(a)(1) The Secretary shall have each vessel to which this chapter applies inspected or examined at least once each year.

(2) Each of those vessels that is more than 10 years of age shall undergo a special and detailed inspection of structural strength and hull integrity as specified by the Secretary.

(3) The Secretary may make contracts for conducting inspections or examinations in the United States and in foreign countries. An inspector conducting an inspection or examination under contract may not issue a certificate of inspection or a certificate of compliance, but the inspector may issue a temporary certificate.

(4) The Secretary shall prescribe by regulation reasonable fees for an inspection or examination conducted under this section outside the United States, or which, when involving a foreign vessel, is conducted under a contract authorized by paragraph (3) of this subsection. The owner, charterer, or managing operator of a vessel inspected or examined by the Secretary is liable for the fees. Amounts received as fees shall be deposited in the Treasury.

(5) The Secretary may allow provisional entry of a vessel to conduct an inspection or examination under this chapter.

(b) Each vessel to which this chapter applies shall have on board those documents the Secretary considers necessary for inspection and enforcement, including documents listing—

(1) the type, grade, and approximate quantities of cargo on board;

(2) the shipper and consignee of the cargo;

(3) the places of origin and destination of the vessel; and

(4) the name of an agent in the United States authorized to accept service of legal process.


(c) Each vessel to which this chapter applies that operates in the United States shall have a person designated as authorized to accept service of legal process for the vessel.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 526; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(8), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3714 46:391a(15)

Section 3714(a) requires the Secretary to establish a program for the inspection of tank vessels, foreign or domestic, at least once each year. The Committee contemplates that United States vessels will be issued a 2 year certificate of inspection with a mid-period examination. The Committee also contemplates that foreign-flag vessels will continue to be tracked and boarded at least once a year or when they first arrive in the United States. The Secretary may examine the foreign-flag tank vessel but may accept, as a basis for the issuance of a certificate of compliance, in whole or in part a foreign-issued certificate.

Each vessel over 10 years of age must undergo a special and detailed inspection of structural strength and hull integrity, as specified by the Secretary. An inspection or examination may be conducted by any officer authorized by the Secretary. The Committee expects that, whenever possible, a qualified marine inspector will be used wherever the vessel undergoes these 10-year inspections. The Secretary may also contract for inspections or examinations in the United States and in foreign countries.

The primary reason for including a provision that permits the contracting for the conduct of inspections and examinations is to provide flexibility in foreign areas where Coast Guard marine inspectors are not normally available.

A contract inspector may be authorized to act on behalf of the Secretary, but may not issue a certificate of inspection or compliance. The inspector may, however, issue a temporary certificate.

The Committee understands that the 10-year inspections of United States-flag and foreign-flag vessels may occur at the time the vessel is scheduled for shipyard availability to complete the periodic classification society survey.

The Secretary is also authorized and directed to prescribe by regulation reasonable fees for certain inspections or examinations conducted pursuant to this section based on the cost incurred. The owner of any vessel inspected or examined by the Secretary or his designee shall be liable for the fee. Amounts received as fees under this section are to be deposited in the Treasury.

Section 3714(b) requires each vessel subject to this chapter to have on board those documents the Secretary declares are necessary for inspection or enforcement, including, but not limited to documents indicating the kind, grade, and approximate quantities of any cargo on board; the shipper and consignee of the cargo; the points of origin and destination of the vessel; and the name of an agent in the United States authorized to accept legal process.

Section 3714(c) requires each vessel subject to this chapter to have a person authorized to accept service of legal process for the vessel.

Amendments

1986—Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 99–307 substituted “charterer” for “charter”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3717 of this title.

§3715. Lightering

(a) A vessel may transfer oil or hazardous material in a port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, when the cargo has been transferred from another vessel on the navigable waters of the United States or in the marine environment, only if—

(1) the transfer was conducted consistent with regulations prescribed by the Secretary;

(2) both the delivering and receiving vessels had on board, at the time of transfer, a certificate of inspection or a certificate of compliance, as would have been required under section 3710 or 3711 of this title, had the transfer taken place in a port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States; and

(3) the delivering and the receiving vessel had on board at the time of transfer, a certificate of financial responsibility as would have been required under section 1016 of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, had the transfer taken place in a place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States;

(4) the delivering and the receiving vessel had on board at the time of transfer, evidence that each vessel is operating in compliance with section 311(j) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1321(j)); and

(5) the delivering and the receiving vessel are operating in compliance with section 3703a of this title.


(b) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations to carry out subsection (a) of this section. The regulations shall include provisions on—

(1) minimum safe operating conditions, including sea state, wave height, weather, proximity to channels or shipping lanes, and other similar factors;

(2) the prevention of spills;

(3) equipment for responding to a spill;

(4) the prevention of any unreasonable interference with navigation or other reasonable uses of the high seas, as those uses are defined by treaty, convention, or customary international law;

(5) the establishment of lightering zones; and

(6) requirements for communication and prearrival messages.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 526; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4115(d), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 520.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3715 46:391a(17)

Section 3715 requires the Secretary to control lightering operations; that is, the transferring of cargoes at sea from large deep-draft vessels to shallow-draft vessels for subsequent transfer to shoreside terminals due to the inability of the larger tank vessels to enter shallow ports. It prohibits a tank vessel from unloading any cargo of oil or hazardous material at any port or terminal under the jurisdiction of the United States, unless the cargo has been transferred in accordance with lightering regulations. It also prohibits the shoreside transfer unless both the delivering and receiving vessels involved in the prior lightering had on board at the time of the offshore transfer, the certificates that would have been required had the transfer taken place in a port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

The regulations to be prescribed by the Secretary shall include a number of specific considerations but may include any related matters deemed necessary to promote navigation and vessel safety and protection of the marine environment. The Secretary must consider standards for minimum safe operating conditions, including sea state, wave height, weather, vessel traffic, the prevention of oil spills, and oil spill response equipment. In regulating this operation, there must not be any unreasonable interference with international navigation or reasonable uses of the high seas, and there must be established lightering zones with attendant communications and prearrival message requirements.

References in Text

Section 1016 of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, referred to in subsec. (a)(3), is classified to section 2716 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Amendments

1990—Subsec. (a)(3) to (5). Pub. L. 101–380 added pars. (3) to (5).

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Effective Date

Section 2(g)(2) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 599, provided that: “Section 3715(a) of title 46 (as enacted by section 1 of this Act) is effective on the day after the effective date of the regulations prescribed by the Secretary under section 3715(b) of title 46.” [Regulations effective Apr. 26, 1984, see 49 F.R. 11170, Mar. 26, 1984.]

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3703a of this title.

§3716. Tank washings

(a) A vessel may not transfer cargo in a port or place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States if, before arriving, the vessel has discharged tank washings containing oil or hazardous material in preparation for loading at that port or place in violation of the laws of the United States or in a manner or quantities inconsistent with a treaty to which the United States is a party.

(b) The Secretary shall establish effective control and supervisory measures to carry out this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 527.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3716 46:391a(18)

Section 3716 requires the Secretary to establish effective control and supervisory measures to prohibit the discharge of tank washings by dumping at sea. The section also prohibits the dumping vessel from subsequently loading any cargo at a port or terminal subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. This section is intended to prohibit the practice of discharging a cargo of oil or hazardous substance, then going to sea to clean tanks by pumping tank washing mixtures overboard, and then returning to a port or terminal subject to the jurisdiction of the United States for the purpose of loading a cargo that was incompatible with the prior cargo.

§3717. Marine safety information system

(a) The Secretary shall establish a marine safety information system that shall contain information about each vessel to which this chapter applies that operates on the navigable waters of the United States, or that transfers oil or hazardous material in a port or place under the jurisdiction of the United States. In acquiring this information, the Secretary shall make full use of publicly available information. The Secretary may by regulation require the vessel to provide information that the Secretary considers necessary to carry out this subsection, including—

(1) the name of each person with an ownership interest in the vessel;

(2) details of compliance with the financial responsibility requirements of applicable laws or regulations;

(3) registration information, including all changes in the name of the vessel;

(4) the history of marine casualties and serious repair problems of the vessel; and

(5) a record of all inspections and examinations of a vessel conducted under section 3714 of this title.


(b) On written request from the Secretary, the head of each department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States Government shall provide available information that the Secretary considers necessary to confirm the information received under subsection (a) of this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 527.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3717 46:391a(16)

Section 3717 requires the Secretary to establish a marine safety information system which is to contain selected information on any tank vessel, foreign or domestic, that comes within the jurisdiction of the United States. This information must be recorded and maintained up-to-date and is available from a number of sources. In some instances, this information is required as a condition of entry. This information shall include certain ownership interests, financial responsibility information, all registered names that the vessel has had since it was built, the present and prior countries of registry, history of accidents or serious repair problems, record of the various inspections or examinations required, and any other data the Secretary deems appropriate to carry out the intent of the section. The section also provides for interagency cooperation and the furnishing of available data and information.

§3718. Penalties

(a)(1) A person violating this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $25,000. Each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation.

(2) Each vessel to which this chapter applies that is operated in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter is liable in rem for a civil penalty under this subsection.

(b) A person willfully and knowingly violating this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter commits a class D felony.

(c) Instead of the penalties provided by subsection (b) of this section, a person willfully and knowingly violating this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter, and using a dangerous weapon, or engaging in conduct that causes bodily injury or fear of imminent bodily injury to an official authorized to enforce this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter, commits a class C felony.

(d) The district courts of the United States have jurisdiction to restrain a violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter.

(e)(1) If any owner, operator, or individual in charge of a vessel is liable for any penalty or fine under this section, or if reasonable cause exists to believe that the owner, operator, or individual in charge may be subject to any penalty or fine under this section, the Secretary of the Treasury, upon the request of the Secretary, shall with respect to such vessel refuse or revoke any clearance required by section 4197 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (46 App. U.S.C. 91).

(2) Clearance or a permit refused or revoked under this subsection may be granted upon filing of a bond or other surety satisfactory to the Secretary.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 527; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4302(c), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 538; Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §312(d), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3921.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3718 46:391a(14)

Section 3718 provides the authority to assess civil penalties for violation of the chapter or regulations. Each violation subjects the violator to a penalty not to exceed $25,000 for each violation and, in the case of a continuing violation, each day shall constitute a separate violation and the vessel is liable in rem. The procedures for assessing penalties are found in section 2107 of part A.

With respect to criminal penalties, a willful or knowing violation of the section or a regulation subjects the offender, upon conviction, to a criminal fine of not more than $50,000 for each violation or imprisonment for not more than 1 year, or both. If the willful and knowing violation involves the use of a dangerous weapon or constitutes an assault or battery, the offender is subjected to a fine of not more than $100,000 or imprisonment of not more than 10 years, or both.

In addition, where the owner or operator of the vessel is subject to any of the penalties prescribed, the Secretary of the Treasury is directed to withhold required Customs clearance, at the request of the Secretary. Clearance may be granted upon the filing of a bond or other surety satisfactory to the Secretary.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 104–324 amended subsec. (e) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (e) read as follows: “At the request of the Secretary, the Secretary of the Treasury shall withhold or revoke the clearance required by section 4197 of the Revised Statutes (46 App. U.S.C. 91) of a vessel the owner or operator of which is subject to a penalty under this section. Clearance may be granted on filing a bond or other surety satisfactory to the Secretary.”

1990—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(c)(1), substituted “commits a class D felony” for “shall be fined not more than $50,000, imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(c)(2), substituted “commits a class C felony” for “shall be fined not more than $100,000, imprisoned for not more than 10 years, or both”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§3719. Reduction of oil spills from single hull non-self-propelled tank vessels

The Secretary shall, in consultation with the Towing Safety Advisory Committee and taking into consideration the characteristics, methods of operation, and the size and nature of service of single hull non-self-propelled tank vessels and towing vessels, prescribe regulations requiring a single hull non-self-propelled tank vessel that operates in the open ocean or coastal waters, or the vessel towing it, to have at least one of the following:

(1) A crew member and an operable anchor on board the tank vessel that together are capable of arresting the tank vessel without additional assistance under reasonably foreseeable sea conditions.

(2) An emergency system on the tank vessel or towing vessel that without additional assistance under reasonably foreseeable sea conditions will allow the tank vessel to be retrieved by the towing vessel if the tow line ruptures.

(3) Any other measure or combination of measures that the Secretary determines will provide protection against grounding of the tank vessel comparable to that provided by the measures described in paragraph (1) or (2).

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title IX, §901(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3946.)

Regulations

Section 901(b) of Pub. L. 104–324 provided that: “The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall issue regulations required under section 3719 of title 46, United States Code, as added by subsection (a), by not later than October 1, 1997.”

CHAPTER 39—CARRIAGE OF ANIMALS

Sec.
3901.
Regulations for accommodations for export animals.
3902.
Penalties.

        

§3901. Regulations for accommodations for export animals

The Secretary of Agriculture may prescribe regulations governing the accommodations on board vessels for cattle, horses, mules, asses, sheep, goats, and swine to be carried from the United States to a foreign country. The regulations shall prescribe standards for space, ventilation, fittings, food and water supply, and other requirements the Secretary of Agriculture considers necessary for the safe and proper transportation and humane treatment of those animals. The Secretary of Agriculture may examine any vessel the Secretary of Agriculture considers necessary to carry out this chapter.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 528.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3901 46:466a

Section 3901 contains the authority to regulate accommodations for the export of animals by the Secretary of Agriculture. The regulations shall prescribe standards for space and ventilation and any other requirements considered necessary.

Effective Date

Chapter effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 3902 of this title.

§3902. Penalties

When the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel carrying animals referred to in section 3901 of this title willfully violates, or causes or permits to be violated, a regulation prescribed under this chapter, the vessel may be prohibited from carrying any such animals from the United States for a period, of not more than one year, that the Secretary of Agriculture directs. The vessel may not be cleared from a port of the United States during that period.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 528.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
3902 46:466b

Section 3902 prohibits a vessel from carrying animals for a period of not more than one year for any violation of section 3901.

CHAPTER 41—UNINSPECTED VESSELS GENERALLY

Sec.
4101.
Application.
4102.
Safety equipment.
4103.
Exemptions.
[4104.
Repealed.]
4105.
Uninspected passenger vessels.
4106.
Penalties.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 41 applies to vessels that are not subject to inspection and certification under chapter 33.

The Federal authority to regulate uninspected vessels originated with the Motorboat Act of 1910 (Public Law 61–201, 36 Stat. 462) when Congress established standards with respect to navigation lights, machinery requirements, life preservers, and for the licensing of operators on small vessels carrying passengers. This was an extension of Federal regulatory authority over certain non-steam-propelled vessels, that is, those recreational vessels and commercial vessels that are propelled by machinery other than steam.

Thirty years later, the 1910 Act was amended by the Motorboat Act of 1940 (Public Law 76–484, 54 Stat. 163), which added to the equipment that was required and provided for other regulatory controls. In this manner the Federal Government continued to exercise some degree of maritime safety supervision over the commercial and recreational vessel sector that was “uninspected”. This was important because steam towing vessels were coverting to diesel propulsion and were therefore no longer subject to the detailed periodic and extensive hull, machinery, and equipment inspections of a Federal agency. In addition, the number of recreational vessels primarily propelled by gasoline were increasing and were also suffering casualties from explosions and fires.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(3)(B), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993, struck out item 4104 “Regulations”.

1984—Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(7)(B), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 446, inserted “GENERALLY” in chapter heading.

§4101. Application

This chapter applies to an uninspected vessel not subject to chapter 45 of this title—

(1) on the navigable waters of the United States; or

(2) owned in the United States and operating on the high seas.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 528; Pub. L. 100–424, §8(b), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1593.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4101 46:526u

Section 4101 makes this chapter applicable to uninspected vessels, as defined in section 2101(43), that operate on the navigable waters of the United States or that are owned in the United States and while operating on the high seas. Therefore a vessel that operates on waters that are considered to be solely State waters would not be subject to these Federal requirements.

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–424 inserted “not subject to chapter 45 of this title” after “an uninspected vessel”.

Effective Date

Chapter effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

§4102. Safety equipment

(a) Each uninspected vessel propelled by machinery shall be provided with the number, type, and size of fire extinguishers, capable of promptly and effectively extinguishing burning liquid fuel, that may be prescribed by regulation. The fire extinguishers shall be kept in condition for immediate and effective use and so placed as to be readily accessible.

(b) Each uninspected vessel propelled by machinery shall carry at least one readily accessible life preserver or other lifesaving device, of the type prescribed by regulation, for each individual on board.

(c) Each uninspected vessel shall have the carburetors of each engine of the vessel (except an outboard motor) using gasoline as fuel, equipped with an efficient flame arrestor, backfire trap, or other similar device prescribed by regulation.

(d) Each uninspected vessel using a volatile liquid as fuel shall be provided with the means prescribed by regulation for properly and efficiently ventilating the bilges of the engine and fuel tank compartments, so as to remove any explosive or flammable gases.

(e) Each manned uninspected vessel owned in the United States and operating beyond 3 nautical miles from the baselines from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured or beyond three nautical miles from the coastline of the Great Lakes shall be equipped with the number and type of alerting and locating equipment, including emergency position indicating radio beacons, prescribed by the Secretary.

(f)(1) The Secretary, in consultation with the Towing Safety Advisory Committee and taking into consideration the characteristics, methods of operation, and nature of service of towing vessels, may require the installation, maintenance, and use of a fire suppression system or other measures to provide adequate assurance that fires on board towing vessels can be suppressed under reasonably foreseeable circumstances.

(2) The Secretary shall require under paragraph (1) the use of a fire suppression system or other measures to provide adequate assurance that a fire on board a towing vessel that is towing a non-self-propelled tank vessel can be suppressed under reasonably foreseeable circumstances.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 528; Pub. L. 99–640, §16, Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3552; Pub. L. 100–424, §2(c), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1590; Pub. L. 100–540, §1(a), Oct. 28, 1988, 102 Stat. 2719; Pub. L. 104–324, title IX, §902(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3947; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §301(b)(3), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3417.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4102(a) 46:526g
4102(b) 46:526e
4102(c) 46:526i
4102(d) 46:526j

Section 4102 requires uninspected vessels to comply with certain provisions that incorporate minimum safety equipment and construction requirements. The Committee intends that the term life preserver include all types of personal equipment, including exposure suits with floatation characteristics.

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 105–383 substituted “owned in the United States and operating beyond 3 nautical miles from the baselines from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured” for “operating on the high seas”.

1996—Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 104–324 added subsec. (f).

1988—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 100–540 amended subsec. (e) generally without regard to the prior repeal of subsec. (e) by Pub. L. 100–424.

Pub. L. 100–424 struck out subsec. (e) which read as follows: “Each uninspected fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel operating on the high seas shall be equipped with the number and type of emergency position indicating radio beacons prescribed by regulation.” See section 4502(a)(7) of this title.

1986—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 99–640 added subsec. (e).

Regulations

Section 902(b) of Pub. L. 104–324 provided that: “The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall issue regulations establishing the requirement described in subsection (f)(2) of section 4102 of title 46, United States Code, as added by this section, by not later than October 1, 1997.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4103 of this title.

§4103. Exemptions

(a) The Secretary may exempt a vessel from any part of this chapter if, under regulations prescribed by the Secretary (including regulations on special operating conditions), the Secretary finds that—

(1) good cause exists for granting an exemption; and

(2) the safety of the vessel and individuals on board will not be adversely affected.


(b) Section 4102(a) of this title does not apply to a vessel propelled by outboard motors when competing in a race previously arranged and announced or, if the vessel is designed and intended only for racing, when operated incidental to tuning up the vessel and its engines for the race.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 529; Pub. L. 100–540, §2, Oct. 28, 1988, 102 Stat. 2719.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4103 46:525h

Section 4103 contains an exemption from carrying fire extinguishers, for on a vessel competing in an organized race or a vessel designed and intended for racing only.

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–540 added subsec. (a) and designated existing provisions as subsec. (b).

[§4104. Repealed. Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(3)(A), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993]

Section, Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 529, required Secretary to prescribe regulations to carry out provisions of this chapter.

§4105. Uninspected passenger vessels

(a) Chapter 43 of this title applies to an uninspected passenger vessel.

(b) Within twenty-four months of the date of enactment of this subsection, the Secretary shall, by regulation, require certain additional equipment which may include liferafts or other lifesaving equipment, construction standards, or specify additional operating standards for those uninspected passenger vessels defined in section 2101(42)(A) of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 529; Pub. L. 103–206, title V, §511(b), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2442.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4105 46:1452

46:1453

Section 4105 provides that an uninspected passenger vessel is subject to Chapter 43, as a recreational vessel even when it is carrying not more than six passengers.

References in Text

The date of enactment of this subsection, referred to in subsec. (b), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 103–206, which was approved Dec. 20, 1993.

Amendments

1993—Pub. L. 103–206 designated existing provisions as subsec. (a) and added subsec. (b).

§4106. Penalties

If a vessel to which this chapter applies is operated in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter, the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, and individual in charge are each liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 529; Pub. L. 100–540, §3, Oct. 28, 1988, 102 Stat. 2719.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4106 46:526o

Section 4106 provides a civil penalty of $100 for a violation of this chapter or a regulation under this chapter. The vessel also is liable in rem.

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–540 substituted “not more than $5,000” for “$100”.

CHAPTER 43—RECREATIONAL VESSELS

Sec.
4301.
Application.
4302.
Regulations.
4303.
Inspection and testing.
4304.
Importation of nonconforming vessels and equipment.
4305.
Exemptions.
4306.
Federal preemption.
4307.
Prohibited acts.
4308.
Termination of unsafe operation.
4309.
Investigation and reporting.
4310.
Repair and replacement of defects.
4311.
Penalties and injunctions.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 43 contains the laws applicable to recreational vessels, which originated primarily with the enactment of the Federal Boat Safety Act of 1971 (Public Law 92–75, 85 Stat. 213). That Act embraced a number of activities, but the portion restated in this chapter deals with the establishment of national construction and performance standards for recreational vessels and their associated equipment, the necessary flexible regulatory authority for inspection and testing, Federal preemption, certain necessary prohibited acts, enforcement authority, investigation and reporting requirements, procedures for repair and defect notification, and attendant penalties and injunctive relief. These laws are a direct response to the dramatic increase in the number of recreational boats and the Congressional recognition of the maritime safety problems that recreational boating has imposed upon our more than 25 million miles of waterways.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in sections 2102, 4105, 13106 of this title; title 15 section 2052.

§4301. Application

(a) This chapter applies to a recreational vessel and associated equipment carried in the vessel on waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States (including the territorial sea of the United States as described in Presidential Proclamation No. 5928 of December 27, 1988) and, for a vessel owned in the United States, on the high seas.

(b) Except when expressly otherwise provided, this chapter does not apply to a foreign vessel temporarily operating on waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

(c) Until there is a final judicial decision that they are navigable waters of the United States, the following waters lying entirely in New Hampshire are declared not to be waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States within the meaning of this section: Lake Winnisquam, Lake Winnipesaukee, parts of the Merrimack River, and their tributary and connecting waters.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 529; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §301(b)(4), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3417.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4301 46:1453

Section 4301 provides that this chapter is applicable to a recreational vessel that operates on waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States or that is owned in the United States and while operating on the high seas.

It also provides that a foreign recreational vessel that temporarily uses our waters is not subject to the requirements of this chapter. However, if the vessel remains permanently in the United States, it would be subject to the provisions of this chapter.

Section 4301(c) recognizes the ongoing controversy over the navigability of certain waters of New Hampshire. While a recreational vessel operating on these waters need not meet the requirements of this chapter, it would be prohibited from operating on any other waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States if it does not comply with these requirements.

References in Text

Presidential Proclamation No. 5928, referred to in subsec. (a), is set out under section 1331 of Title 43, Public Lands.

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 105–383 inserted “(including the territorial sea of the United States as described in Presidential Proclamation No. 5928 of December 27, 1988)” after “of the United States”.

Effective Date

Chapter effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

§4302. Regulations

(a) The Secretary may prescribe regulations—

(1) establishing minimum safety standards for recreational vessels and associated equipment, and establishing procedures and tests required to measure conformance with those standards, with each standard—

(A) meeting the need for recreational vessel safety; and

(B) being stated, insofar as practicable, in terms of performance;


(2) requiring the installation, carrying, or use of associated equipment (including fuel systems, ventilation systems, electrical systems, sound-producing devices, firefighting equipment, lifesaving devices, signaling devices, ground tackle, life- and grab-rails, and navigational equipment) on recreational vessels and classes of recreational vessels subject to this chapter, and prohibiting the installation, carrying, or use of associated equipment that does not conform with safety standards established under this section; and

(3) requiring or permitting the display of seals, labels, plates, insignia, or other devices for certifying or evidencing compliance with safety regulations and standards of the United States Government for recreational vessels and associated equipment.


(b) Each regulation prescribed under this section shall specify an effective date that is not earlier than 180 days from the date the regulation was published, unless the Secretary finds that there exists a recreational vessel safety hazard so critical as to require an earlier effective date. However, this period may not be more than 24 months for cases involving, in the discretion of the Secretary, major product design, retooling, or major changes in the manufacturing process.

(c) In prescribing regulations under this section, the Secretary shall, among other things—

(1) consider the need for and the extent to which the regulations will contribute to recreational vessel safety;

(2) consider relevant available recreational vessel safety standards, statistics, and data, including public and private research, development, testing, and evaluation;

(3) not compel substantial alteration of a recreational vessel or item of associated equipment that is in existence, or the construction or manufacture of which is begun before the effective date of the regulation, but subject to that limitation may require compliance or performance, to avoid a substantial risk of personal injury to the public, that the Secretary considers appropriate in relation to the degree of hazard that the compliance will correct; and

(4) consult with the National Boating Safety Advisory Council established under section 13110 of this title about the considerations referred to in clauses (1)–(3) of this subsection.


(d) Section 8903 of this title does not apply to a vessel being operated for bona fide dealer demonstrations provided without fee to business invitees. However, if on the basis of substantial evidence, the Secretary decides under this section that requiring vessels so operated to be under the control of licensed individuals is necessary for boating safety, then the Secretary may prescribe regulations requiring the licensing of individuals controlling these vessels in the same manner as provided in chapter 89 of this title for individuals in control of vessels carrying passengers for hire.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 530.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4302 46:1454

46:1455

46:1456

46:1464(g)

46:1488

Section 4302 authorizes the Secretary to prescribe regulations to carry out the provisions of this chapter. In lieu of establishing specific statutory safety requirements, subsection (a) provides flexible regulatory authority to establish uniform standards for the design, construction, materials, and performance of the boats themselves and all associated equipment. It also provides for the display of seals and other devices for certifying or evidencing compliance with applicable safety regulations or standards.

Section 4302(b) requires a regulation prescribed under this section to have an effective date that is not earlier than 180 days from publication. However, in those instances where a safety hazard may be critical an earlier effective date is authorized.

Section 4302(c) requires the Secretary to consider certain objectives in developing regulatory controls and regulations or standards and that there must be an effective consultation process.

Section 4302(d) exempts dealer demonstration boats from the requirement of having to be named by a licensed individual when demonstrating boats to prospective purchasers or other business invitees when no fees are charged. The Secretary may require that boats so used be under control of a licensed individual.

Availability and Use of EPIRBs for Recreational Vessels

Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §309, Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3422, provided that: “The Secretary of Transportation, through the Coast Guard and in consultation with the National Transportation Safety Board and recreational boating organizations, shall, within 24 months of the date of the enactment of this Act [Nov. 13, 1998], assess and report to Congress on the use of emergency position indicating beacons (EPIRBs) and similar devices by operators of recreational vessels on the Intracoastal Waterway and operators of recreational vessels beyond the Boundary Line. The assessment shall at a minimum—

“(1) evaluate the current availability and use of EPIRBs and similar devices by the operators of recreational vessels and the actual and potential contribution of such devices to recreational boating safety; and

“(2) provide recommendations on policies and programs to encourage the availability and use of EPIRBS [sic] and similar devices by the operators of recreational vessels.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 4303, 4306, 4310, 8905, 13110 of this title.

§4303. Inspection and testing

(a) Subject to regulations, supervision, and reviews that the Secretary may prescribe, the Secretary may delegate to a person, private or public agency, or organization, or to an officer or employee under the supervision of that person or agency, any work, business, or function related to the testing, inspection, and examination necessary for compliance enforcement and for the development of data to enable the Secretary to prescribe regulations under section 4302 of this title.

(b) The Secretary may—

(1) conduct research, testing, and development necessary to carry out this chapter, including the procurement by negotiation or otherwise of experimental and other recreational vessels or associated equipment for research and testing purposes; and

(2) subsequently sell those vessels.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 531.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4303 46:1457

Section 4303 authorizes the Secretary to delegate to certain persons or agencies or organizations any work, business, or function related to the testing, inspection, and examination necessary for compliance enforcement. The Secretary may also conduct research, testing, and development necessary to carry out this chapter, including procurement of vessels and equipment and their subsequent sale. The Committee wishes to make clear that the Secretary may sell anything that was purchased to test.

§4304. Importation of nonconforming vessels and equipment

The Secretary and the Secretary of the Treasury may authorize by joint regulations the importation of any nonconforming recreational vessel or associated equipment on conditions, including providing a bond, that will ensure that the recreational vessel or associated equipment will be brought into conformity with applicable safety regulations and standards of the Government before the vessel or equipment is operated on waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 531.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4304 46:1460

Section 4304 requires the regulation and control of the importation of nonconforming recreational vessels and associated equipment. This is to assure United States manufacturers that foreign imports comply with those regulations and standards in effect for United States products so that all manufacturers will be on this same competitive footing. This is being done in lieu of providing a specific prohibition against the importation of these vessels and equipment that might be considered an imposition of a non-tariff barrier to trade.

§4305. Exemptions

If the Secretary considers that recreational vessel safety will not be adversely affected, the Secretary may issue an exemption from this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 531.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4305 46:1458

Section 4305 permits the Secretary to grant appropriate exemptions from the requirements of this chapter when recreational vessel safety will not be adversely affected.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4306 of this title.

§4306. Federal preemption

Unless permitted by the Secretary under section 4305 of this title, a State or political subdivision of a State may not establish, continue in effect, or enforce a law or regulation establishing a recreational vessel or associated equipment performance or other safety standard or imposing a requirement for associated equipment (except insofar as the State or political subdivision may, in the absence of the Secretary's disapproval, regulate the carrying or use of marine safety articles to meet uniquely hazardous conditions or circumstances within the State) that is not identical to a regulation prescribed under section 4302 of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 531.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4306 46:1459

46:1460

Section 4306 establishes the Federal preemption of recreational boating standards and requirements. A State or a political subdivision may not establish, continue, or enforce a law or regulation establishing a performance or other safety standard that is not identical to a Federal standard. The Secretary may grant an exemption to a State when the State requirement is one that is needed to meet uniquely hazardous conditions or circumstances within a State. This is to provide uniform standards without the imposition of excessive special requirements by individual States.

§4307. Prohibited acts

(a) A person may not—

(1) manufacture, construct, assemble, sell or offer for sale, introduce or deliver for introduction into interstate commerce, or import into the United States, a recreational vessel, associated equipment, or component of the vessel or equipment unless—

(A)(i) it conforms with this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter; and

(ii) it does not contain a defect which has been identified, in any communication to such person by the Secretary or the manufacturer of that vessel, equipment or component, as creating a substantial risk of personal injury to the public; or

(B) it is intended only for export and is so labeled, tagged, or marked on the recreational vessel or equipment, including any markings on the outside of the container in which it is to be exported;


(2) affix, attach, or display a seal, document, label, plate, insignia, or other device indicating or suggesting compliance with standards of the United States Government on, in, or in connection with, a recreational vessel or item of associated equipment that is false or misleading; or

(3) fail to provide a notification as required by this chapter or fail to exercise reasonable diligence in carrying out the notification and reporting requirements of this chapter.


(b) A person may not operate a vessel in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 531; Pub. L. 98–557, §8(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2862.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4307(a) 46:1461(a)
4307(b) 46:1461(c)

Section 4307 prohibits certain acts in the manufacture and operation of recreational vessels.

Amendments

1984—Subsec. (a)(1)(A). Pub. L. 98–557 designated existing provisions as cl. (i), substituted “and” for “or”, and added cl. (ii).

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4311 of this title.

§4308. Termination of unsafe operation

If an official charged with the enforcement of this chapter observes a recreational vessel being operated without sufficient lifesaving or firefighting devices or in an overloaded or other unsafe condition (as defined in regulations prescribed under this chapter) and, in the judgment of the official, the operation creates an especially hazardous condition, the official may direct the individual in charge of the recreational vessel to take immediate and reasonable steps necessary for the safety of individuals on board the vessel, including directing the individual in charge to return to a mooring and to remain there until the situation creating the hazard is corrected or ended.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 532; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(9), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4308 46:1462

Section 4308 authorizes an appropriate official to terminate the unsafe operation of recreational vessels. If the official observes the vessel being operated without sufficient lifesaving or firefighting devices or in an overloaded or other unsafe condition (as defined in regulations) and believes the operation creates an especially hazardous condition, the operator may be directed to take immediate and reasonable steps necessary for safety, including returning to a mooring and remaining there until the hazard is corrected or ended. This does not prevent the assessment of any applicable civil penalties nor the pursuing of appropriate criminal action.

Amendments

1986—Pub. L. 99–307 substituted “individual in charge” for “operator” in two places.

§4309. Investigation and reporting

(a) A recreational vessel manufacturer to whom this chapter applies shall establish and maintain records and reports and provide information the Secretary may require to enable the Secretary to decide whether the manufacturer has acted or is acting in compliance with this chapter and regulations prescribed under this chapter. On request of an officer, employee, or agent authorized by the Secretary, a recreational vessel manufacturer shall permit the officer, employee, or agent to inspect, at reasonable times, factories or other facilities, and records related to deciding whether the manufacturer has acted or is acting in compliance with this chapter and regulations prescribed under this chapter.

(b) Information reported to or otherwise obtained by the Secretary or the representative of the Secretary under this section containing or related to a trade secret or other matter referred to in section 1905 of title 18, or authorized to be exempt from public disclosure by section 552(b) of title 5, is confidential under section 1905. However, on approval of the Secretary, the information may be disclosed to other officers, employees, or agents concerned with carrying out this chapter or when it is relevant in a proceeding under this chapter.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 532.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4309 46:1463

Section 4309 requires the establishment and maintenance of certain records by manufacturers, and the inspection and access to these records by the Secretary, at reasonable times, so as to assure Federal enforcement officials that the manufacturer has acted or is in compliance with applicable laws and regulations. It also provides protection for matters related to trade secrets and exemptions from public disclosure.

§4310. Repair and replacement of defects

(a) In this section, “associated equipment” includes only items or classes of associated equipment that the Secretary shall prescribe by regulation after deciding that the application of the requirements of this section to those items or classes of associated equipment is reasonable and in furtherance of this chapter.

(b) If a recreational vessel or associated equipment has left the place of manufacture and the recreational vessel manufacturer discovers or acquires information that the manufacturer decides, in the exercise of reasonable and prudent judgment, indicates that a recreational vessel or associated equipment subject to an applicable regulation prescribed under section 4302 of this title either fails to comply with the regulation, or contains a defect that creates a substantial risk of personal injury to the public, the manufacturer shall provide notification of the defect or failure of compliance as provided by subsections (c) and (d) of this section within a reasonable time after the manufacturer has discovered the defect.

(c)(1) The notification required by subsection (b) of this section shall be given to the following persons in the following manner:

(A) by certified mail to the first purchaser for other than resale, except that the requirement for notification of the first purchaser shall be satisfied if the recreational vessel manufacturer exercises reasonable diligence in establishing and maintaining a list of those purchasers and their current addresses, and sends the required notice to each person on that list at the address appearing on the list.

(B) by certified mail to subsequent purchasers if known to the manufacturer.

(C) by certified mail or other more expeditious means to the dealers and distributors of the recreational vessels or associated equipment.


(2) The notification required by subsection (b) of this section is required to be given only for a defect or failure of compliance discovered by the recreational vessel manufacturer within a reasonable time after the manufacturer has discovered the defect or failure, except that the manufacturer's duty of notification under paragraph (1)(A) and (B) of this subsection applies only to a defect or failure of compliance discovered by the manufacturer within one of the following appropriate periods:

(A) if a recreational vessel or associated equipment required by regulation to have a date of certification affixed, 5 years from the date of certification.

(B) if a recreational vessel or associated equipment not required by regulation to have a date of certification affixed, 5 years from the date of manufacture.


(d) The notification required by subsection (b) of this section shall contain a clear description of the defect or failure to comply, an evaluation of the hazard reasonably related to the defect or failure, a statement of the measures to correct the defect or failure, and an undertaking by the recreational vessel manufacturer to take those measures only at the manufacturer's cost and expense.

(e) Each recreational vessel manufacturer shall provide the Secretary with a copy of all notices, bulletins, and other communications to dealers and distributors of that manufacturer, and to purchasers of recreational vessels or associated equipment of that manufacturer, about a defect related to safety in the recreational vessels or associated equipment, and any failure to comply with the regulation or order applicable to the recreational vessels or associated equipment. The Secretary may publish or otherwise disclose to the public information in the notices or other information the Secretary has that the Secretary considers will assist in carrying out this chapter. However, the Secretary may disclose any information that contains or relates to a trade secret only if the Secretary decides that the information is necessary to carry out this chapter.

(f) If, through testing, inspection, investigation, or examination of reports, the Secretary decides that a recreational vessel or associated equipment to which this chapter applies contains a defect related to safety or fails to comply with an applicable regulation prescribed under this chapter and notification under this chapter is appropriate, the Secretary shall notify the recreational vessel manufacturer of the defect or failure. The notice shall contain the findings of the Secretary and shall include a synopsis of the information on which they are based. The manufacturer may then provide the notification required by this chapter to the persons designated in this chapter or dispute the Secretary's decision. If disputed, the Secretary shall provide the manufacturer with an opportunity to present views and establish that there is no such defect or failure. When the Secretary considers it to be in the public interest, the Secretary may publish notice of the proceeding in the Federal Register and provide interested persons, including the National Boating Safety Advisory Council, with an opportunity to comment. If, after presentation by the manufacturer, the Secretary decides that the recreational vessel or associated equipment contains a defect related to safety or fails to comply with an applicable regulation, the Secretary may direct the manufacturer to provide the notifications specified in this chapter.

(g) The Secretary may prescribe regulations to carry out this section, including the establishment of procedures that require dealers and distributors to assist manufacturers in obtaining information required by this section. A regulation prescribed under this subsection does not relieve a manufacturer of any obligation imposed by this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 532.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4310 46:1464

Section 4310 imposes certain requirements on a recreational vessel and associated equipment manufacturer to provide notification of a defect or the failure of compliance after a manufacturer discovers the defect or failure. This section spells out the procedure for notification and who shall be notified. It assures the public of notification while protecting the manufacturer from the potential of damaging and inaccurate disclosures.

§4311. Penalties and injunctions

(a) A person willfully operating a recreational vessel in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter shall be fined not more than $5,000, imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.

(b) A person violating section 4307(a)(1) of this title is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $2,000, except that the maximum civil penalty may be not more than $100,000 for a related series of violations. When a corporation violates section 4307(a)(1), any director, officer, or executive employee of the corporation who knowingly and willfully ordered, or knowingly and willfully authorized, a violation is individually liable to the Government for the penalty, in addition to the corporation. However, the director, officer, or executive employee is not liable individually under this subsection if the director, officer, or executive employee can demonstrate by a preponderance of the evidence that—

(1) the order or authorization was issued on the basis of a decision, in exercising reasonable and prudent judgment, that the defect or the nonconformity with standards and regulations constituting the violation would not cause or constitute a substantial risk of personal injury to the public; and

(2) at the time of the order or authorization, the director, officer, or executive employee advised the Secretary in writing of acting under this clause and clause (1) of this subsection.


(c) A person violating any other provision of this chapter or other regulation prescribed under this chapter is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $1,000. If the violation involves the operation of a vessel, the vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(d) When a civil penalty of not more than $200 has been assessed under this chapter, the Secretary may refer the matter of collection of the penalty directly to the United States magistrate of the jurisdiction in which the person liable may be found for collection procedures under supervision of the district court and under an order issued by the court delegating this authority under section 636(b) of title 28.

(e) The district courts of the United States have jurisdiction to restrain a violation of this chapter, or to restrain the sale, offer for sale, introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce, or importation into the United States, of a recreational vessel or associated equipment that the court decides does not conform to safety standards of the Government. A civil action under this subsection shall be brought by filing a petition by the Attorney General for the Government. When practicable, the Secretary shall give notice to a person against whom an action for injunctive relief is contemplated and provide the person with an opportunity to present views and, except for a knowing and willful violation, shall provide the person with a reasonable opportunity to achieve compliance. The failure to give notice and provide the opportunity does not preclude the granting of appropriate relief by the district court.

(f) A person is not subject to a penalty under this chapter if the person—

(1) establishes that the person did not have reason to know, in exercising reasonable care, that a recreational vessel or associated equipment does not conform with the applicable safety standards of the Government or that the person was not advised by the Secretary or the manufacturer of that vessel, equipment or component that the vessel, equipment or component contains a defect which creates a substantial risk of personal injury to the public; or

(2) holds a certificate issued by the manufacturer of that recreational vessel or associated equipment to the effect that the recreational vessel or associated equipment conforms to all applicable recreational vessel safety standards of the Government, unless the person knows or reasonably should have known that the recreational vessel or associated equipment does not so conform.


(g) Compliance with this chapter or standards, regulations, or orders prescribed under this chapter does not relieve a person from liability at common law or under State law.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 534; Pub. L. 98–557, §8(b), (c), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2862.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
4311(a) 46:1483
4311(b) 46:1484(a)
4311(c) 46:1484(b)
4311(d) 46:1484(d)
4311(e) 46:1485
4311(f) 46:1461(b)
4311(g) 46:1489

Section 4311 provides penalties for violating any of the provisions of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter. For a willful violation the penalty is a criminal fine; all other penalties are civil in nature.

A person violating any of the prohibited acts specified in section 4307(a)(1) is subject to a maximum civil penalty that can go as high as a $100,000 for a related series of violations. However, the section provides for no liability for good faith reliance on certifications of compliance by others within the chain of responsibility and for defects that are not within an individual's responsibility or control.

This section also contains an alternate procedure for the collection of a civil penalty of not more than $200 through a U.S. magistrate in lieu of the civil penalty procedures of the Coast Guard. It also directs the district courts of the United States to restrain the sale, offer for sale, introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce, or importation of a recreational vessel or associated equipment that does not conform to applicable safety standards. Finally, compliance with this chapter or standards, regulations, or orders does not relieve a person from liability at common law or under State law.

Amendments

1984—Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 98–557, §8(b), inserted “defect or the” before “nonconformity”.

Subsec. (f)(1). Pub. L. 98–557, §8(c), inserted provisions relating to advice by the Secretary or manufacturer of the vessel, equipment or component respecting defects creating substantial risk of personal injury to the public.

Change of Name

Reference to United States magistrate or to magistrate deemed to refer to United States magistrate judge pursuant to section 321 of Pub. L. 101–650, set out as a note under section 631 of Title 28, Judiciary and Judicial Procedure.

CHAPTER 45—UNINSPECTED COMMERCIAL FISHING INDUSTRY VESSELS

Sec.
4501.
Application.
4502.
Safety standards.
4503.
Fish processing vessel certification.
4504.
Prohibited acts.
4505.
Termination of unsafe operations.
4506.
Exemptions.
4507.
Penalties.
4508.
Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Advisory Committee.

        

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1585, in chapter heading substituted “UNINSPECTED COMMERCIAL FISHING INDUSTRY VESSELS” for “FISH PROCESSING VESSELS”, substituted “Safety standards” for “Regulations” in item 4502, “Fish processing vessel certification” for “Equivalency” in item 4503, “Prohibited acts” for “Penalties” in item 4504, and added items 4505 to 4508.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in sections 2102, 4101 of this title.

§4501. Application

(a) This chapter applies to an uninspected vessel which is a fishing vessel, fish processing vessel, or fish tender vessel.

(b) This chapter does not apply to the carriage of bulk dangerous cargoes regulated under chapter 37 of this title.

(Added Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(7)(C), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 446; amended Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1585.)

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–424 amended section generally, in subsec. (a) substituting provisions which related to uninspected fish processing vessel entered into service after Dec. 31, 1987, having more than 16 individuals on board primarily employed in preparation of fish on navigable waters of United States or owned in United States and operating on high seas, for provisions which related to uninspected fishing vessel, fish processing vessel, or fish tender vessel, and in subsec. (b) substituting “carriage of bulk” for “carriage of liquid bulk”.

Foreign Built Vessels, Equivalent Compliance Until July 28, 1990

Section 7 of Pub. L. 100–424 provided that: “Until July 28, 1990, a foreign built fish processing vessel subject to chapter 45 of title 46, United States Code, is deemed to comply with the requirements of that chapter if—

“(1) it has an unexpired certificate of inspection issued by a foreign country that is a party to an International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea to which the United States Government is a party; and

“(2) it is in compliance with the safety requirements of that foreign country that apply to that vessel.”

§4502. Safety standards

(a) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations which require that each vessel to which this chapter applies shall be equipped with—

(1) readily accessible fire extinguishers capable of promptly and effectively extinguishing a flammable or combustible liquid fuel fire;

(2) at least one readily accessible life preserver or other lifesaving device for each individual on board;

(3) an efficient flame arrestor, backfire trap, or other similar device on the carburetors of each inboard engine which uses gasoline as fuel;

(4) the means to properly and efficiently ventilate enclosed spaces, including engine and fuel tank compartments, so as to remove explosive or flammable gases;

(5) visual distress signals;

(6) a buoyant apparatus, if the vessel is of a type required by regulations prescribed by the Secretary to be equipped with that apparatus;

(7) alerting and locating equipment, including emergency position indicating radio beacons, on vessels that operate beyond 3 nautical miles from the baselines from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured, and which are owned in the United States or beyond 3 nautical miles from the coastline of the Great Lakes; and

(8) a placard as required by regulations prescribed under section 10603(b) of this title.


(b)(1) In addition to the requirements of subsection (a) of this section, the Secretary shall prescribe regulations requiring the installation, maintenance, and use of the equipment in paragraph (2) of this subsection for documented vessels to which this chapter applies that—

(A) operate beyond the Boundary Line;

(B) operate with more than 16 individuals on board; or

(C) in the case of a fish tender vessel, engage in the Aleutian trade.


(2) The equipment to be required is as follows:

(A) alerting and locating equipment, including emergency position indicating radio beacons;

(B) lifeboats or liferafts sufficient to accommodate all individuals on board;

(C) at least one readily accessible immersion suit for each individual on board that vessel when operating on the waters described in section 3102 of this title;

(D) radio communications equipment sufficient to effectively communicate with land-based search and rescue facilities;

(E) navigation equipment, including compasses, radar reflectors, nautical charts, and anchors;

(F) first aid equipment, including medicine chests; and

(G) other equipment required to minimize the risk of injury to the crew during vessel operations, if the Secretary determines that a risk of serious injury exists that can be eliminated or mitigated by that equipment.


(c)(1) In addition to the requirements described in subsections (a) and (b) of this section, the Secretary may prescribe regulations establishing the standards in paragraph (2) of this subsection for vessels to which this chapter applies that—

(A)(i) were built after December 31, 1988, or undergo a major conversion completed after that date; and

(ii) operate with more than 16 individuals on board; or

(B) in the case of a fish tender vessel, engage in the Aleutian trade.


(2) The standards shall be minimum safety standards, including standards relating to—

(A) navigation equipment, including radars and fathometers;

(B) lifesaving equipment, immersion suits, signaling devices, bilge pumps, bilge alarms, life rails, and grab rails;

(C) fire protection and firefighting equipment, including fire alarms and portable and semiportable fire extinguishing equipment;

(D) use and installation of insulation material;

(E) storage methods for flammable or combustible material; and

(F) fuel, ventilation, and electrical systems.


(d)(1) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations for the operating stability of a vessel to which this chapter applies—

(A) that was built after December 31, 1989; or

(B) the physical characteristics of which are substantially altered after December 31, 1989, in a manner that affects the vessel's operating stability.


(2) The Secretary may accept, as evidence of compliance with this subsection, a certification of compliance issued by the person providing insurance for the vessel or by another qualified person approved by the Secretary.

(e) In prescribing regulations under this chapter, the Secretary—

(1) shall consider the specialized nature and economics of the operations and the character, design, and construction of the vessel; and

(2) may not require the alteration of a vessel or associated equipment that was constructed or manufactured before the effective date of the regulation.


(f) To ensure compliance with the requirements of this chapter, at least once every 2 years the Secretary shall examine—

(1) a fish processing vessel; and

(2) a fish tender vessel engaged in the Aleutian trade.

(Added Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(7)(C), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 447; amended Pub. L. 98–557, §33(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2876; Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1585; Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §602(c), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2990; Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §307, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3918; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §301(b)(5), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3417.)

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (a)(7). Pub. L. 105–383 substituted “beyond 3 nautical miles from the baselines from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured, and which are owned in the United States” for “on the high seas”.

1996—Subsec. (a)(7). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “or beyond 3 nautical miles from the coastline of the Great Lakes” after “high seas”.

1990—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 101–595, §602(c)(1), amended subsec. (b) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (b) read as follows: “In addition to the requirements of subsection (a) of this section, the Secretary shall prescribe regulations for documented vessels to which this chapter applies that operate beyond the Boundary Line or that operate with more than 16 individuals on board, for the installation, maintenance, and use of—

“(1) alerting and locating equipment, including emergency position indicating radio beacons;

“(2) lifeboats or liferafts sufficient to accommodate all individuals on board;

“(3) at least one readily accessible immersion suit for each individual on board that vessel when operating on the waters described in section 3102 of this title;

“(4) radio communications equipment sufficient to effectively communicate with land-based search and rescue facilities;

“(5) navigation equipment, including compasses, radar reflectors, nautical charts, and anchors;

“(6) first aid equipment, including medicine chests; and

“(7) other equipment required to minimize the risk of injury to the crew during vessel operations, if the Secretary determines that a risk of serious injury exists that can be eliminated or mitigated by that equipment.”

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 101–595, §602(c)(1), amended subsec. (c) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (c) read as follows: “In addition to the requirements described in subsections (a) and (b) of this section, the Secretary may prescribe regulations establishing minimum safety standards for vessels to which this chapter applies that were built after December 31, 1988, or that undergo a major conversion completed after that date, and that operate with more than 16 individuals on board, including standards relating to—

“(1) navigation equipment, including radars and fathometers;

“(2) life saving equipment, immersion suits, signaling devices, bilge pumps, bilge alarms, life rails, and grab rails;

“(3) fire protection and firefighting equipment, including fire alarms and portable and semiportable fire extinguishing equipment;

“(4) use and installation of insulation material;

“(5) storage methods for flammable or combustible material; and

“(6) fuel, ventilation, and electrical systems.”

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 101–595, §602(c)(2), amended subsec. (f) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (f) read as follows: “The Secretary shall examine a fish processing vessel at least once every two years to ensure that the vessel complies with the requirements of this chapter.”

1988—Pub. L. 100–424 amended section generally, substituting “Safety standards” for “Regulations” in section catchline, adding subsecs. (a) and (b), redesignating former subsec. (a) as (c) and establishing list of standards as minimum safety standards, in addition to requirements of subsecs. (a) and (b), for vessels built after Dec. 31, 1988, or that undergo major conversion completed after that date, that operate with more than 16 individuals on board, adding subsec. (d), redesignating former subsec. (b) as (e) and striking out provisions which required Secretary to consult with representatives of private sector, experienced in operation of these vessels, to ensure practicability of regulations, and adding subsec. (f).

1984—Subsec. (b)(3). Pub. L. 98–557 substituted “this chapter” for “the exemption”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Section 602(f) of Pub. L. 101–595, provided that: “This section [amending this section and sections 2102, 3302, 5102, 8104, and 8702 of this title, and enacting provisions set out as a note under section 7306 of this title] is effective on the date of enactment of this section [Nov. 16, 1990] except as follows:

“(1) The requirements imposed by section 3302(c)(4)(B) and (C) of title 46, United States Code, (as enacted by subsection (b) of this section) is effective 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act.

“(2) Before January 1, 1993, section 4502(c) (as amended by subsection (c) of this section) does not apply to a fish tender vessel engaged in the Aleutian trade, if the vessel—

“(A)(i) before September 8, 1990, operated in that trade; or

“(ii) before September 8, 1990, was purchased to be used in that trade and, before June 1, 1992, entered into service in that trade; and

“(B) does not undergo a major conversion.

“(3) Before January 1, 2003, a fish tender vessel is exempt from chapter 51 of title 46, United States Code, (as amended by subsection (d) of this section) when engaged in the Aleutian trade, if the vessel—

“(A)(i) before September 8, 1990, operated in that trade; or

“(ii) before September 8, 1990, was purchased to be used in this trade and, before June 1, 1992, entered into service in that trade;

“(B) does not undergo a major conversion; and

“(C) did not have a load line assigned at any time before the date of enactment of this Act.

“(4) The requirements imposed by section 8702(b)(2) of title 46, United States Code, (as amended by subsection (e)(2)(B) of this section) are effective 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act.”

Studies Regarding Safety of Fishing Vessels

Section 5(a) of Pub. L. 100–424 directed Secretary of Transportation, utilizing National Academy of Engineering and in consultation with National Transportation Safety Board, Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Advisory Committee, and fishing industry, to conduct a study of safety problems on fishing industry vessels, and to make recommendations regarding whether a vessel inspection program could be implemented for fishing vessels, fish tender vessels, and fish processing vessels, including recommendations on nature and scope of that inspection, and further provided for submission of the study and recommendations to Congress before Jan. 1, 1990.

Section 5(b) of Pub. L. 100–424 directed Secretary of department in which Coast Guard is operating, in consultation with Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Advisory Committee established under section 4508 of this title, and with representatives of persons operating fish processing vessels to conduct a study of fish processing vessels that are not surveyed and classed by an organization approved by Secretary, and to make recommendations regarding what hull and machinery requirements could apply to such vessels to ensure that those vessels are operated and maintained in a condition in which they are safe to operate at sea, and further provided for submission of such study and recommendations to Congress before July 28, 1991.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4506 of this title.

§4503. Fish processing vessel certification

(a) A fish processing vessel to which this section applies may not be operated unless the vessel—

(1) meets all survey and classification requirements prescribed by the American Bureau of Shipping or another similarly qualified organization approved by the Secretary; and

(2) has on board a certificate issued by the American Bureau of Shipping or that other organization evidencing compliance with this subsection.


(b) This section applies to a fish processing vessel to which this chapter applies that—

(1) is built after July 27, 1990; or

(2) undergoes a major conversion completed after that date.

(Added Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(7)(C), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 447; amended Pub. L. 98–557, §33(b), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2876; Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1587.)

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–424 amended section generally, substituting “Fish processing vessel certification” for “Equivalency” in section catchline, and provisions which require certification issued by American Bureau of Shipping or similar organization for fish processing vessel built after July 27, 1990, or undergoes major conversion completed after that date, for provisions which deemed compliance with this chapter if vessel has unexpired certificate of inspection issued by foreign country that is party to International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea to which United States is party.

1984—Pub. L. 98–557 substituted “is deemed” for “shall be deemed”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4505 of this title.

§4504. Prohibited acts

A person may not operate a vessel in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter.

(Added Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(7)(C), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 447; amended Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1587.)

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–424 amended section generally, substituting “Prohibited acts” for “Penalties” in section catchline, and provisions prohibiting operation of vessel in violation of this chapter, for provisions which imposed civil penalty not more than $1,000 for operation of vessel in violation of chapter, and liability in rem for penalty.

§4505. Termination of unsafe operations

An official authorized to enforce this chapter—

(1) may direct the individual in charge of a vessel to which this chapter applies to immediately take reasonable steps necessary for the safety of individuals on board the vessel if the official observes the vessel being operated in an unsafe condition that the official believes creates an especially hazardous condition, including ordering the individual in charge to return the vessel to a mooring and to remain there until the situation creating the hazard is corrected or ended; and

(2) may order the individual in charge of an uninspected fish processing vessel that does not have on board the certificate required under section 4503(1) of this title to return the vessel to a mooring and to remain there until the vessel is in compliance with that section.

(Added Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1587.)

§4506. Exemptions

(a) The Secretary may exempt a vessel from any part of this chapter if, under regulations prescribed by the Secretary (including regulations on special operating conditions), the Secretary finds that—

(1) good cause exists for granting an exemption; and

(2) the safety of the vessel and those on board will not be adversely affected.


(b) A vessel to which this chapter applies is exempt from section 4502(b)(2)(B) of this title if it—

(1) is less than 36 feet in length; and

(2) is operating—

(A) in internal waters of the United States; or

(B) within 3 nautical miles from the baselines from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured.

(Added Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1587; amended Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5222, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5081; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §301(b)(6), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3417.)

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 105–383 added par. (2) and struck out former par. (2) which read as follows: “is not operating on the high seas.”

1992—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 102–587 substituted “4502(b)(2)(B)” for “4502(b)(2)”.

§4507. Penalties

(a) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, and individual in charge of a vessel to which this chapter applies which is operated in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter may each be assessed a civil penalty by the Secretary of not more than $5,000. Any vessel with respect to which a penalty is assessed under this subsection is liable in rem for the penalty.

(b) A person willfully violating this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter shall be fined not more than $5,000, imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.

(Added Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1588.)

§4508. Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Advisory Committee

(a) The Secretary shall establish a Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Advisory Committee. The Committee—

(1) may advise, consult with, report to, and make recommendations to the Secretary on matters relating to the safe operation of vessels to which this chapter applies, including navigation safety, safety equipment and procedures, marine insurance, vessel design, construction, maintenance and operation, and personnel qualifications and training;

(2) may review proposed regulations under this chapter;

(3) may make available to Congress any information, advice, and recommendations that the Committee is authorized to give to the Secretary; and

(4) shall meet at the call of the Secretary, who shall call such a meeting at least once during each calendar year.


(b)(1) The Committee shall consist of seventeen members with particular expertise, knowledge, and experience regarding the commercial fishing industry as follows:

(A) ten members from the commercial fishing industry who—

(i) reflect a regional and representational balance; and

(ii) have experience in the operation of vessels to which this chapter applies or as a crew member or processing line worker on an uninspected fish processing vessel;


(B) three members from the general public, including, whenever possible, an independent expert or consultant in maritime safety and a member of a national organization composed of persons representing owners of vessels to which this chapter applies and persons representing the marine insurance industry;

(C) one member representing each of—

(i) naval architects or marine surveyors;

(ii) manufacturers of equipment for vessels to which this chapter applies;

(iii) education or training professionals related to fishing vessel, fish processing vessel, or fish tender vessel safety or personnel qualifications; and

(iv) underwriters that insure vessels to which this chapter applies.


(2) At least once each year, the Secretary shall publish a notice in the Federal Register and in newspapers of general circulation in coastal areas soliciting nominations for membership on the Committee, and, after timely notice is published, appoint the members of the Committee. An individual may be appointed to a term as a member of the Committee more than once. The Secretary may not seek or use information concerning the political affiliation of individuals in making appointments to the Committee.

(3)(A) A member of the Committee shall serve a term of three years.

(B) If a vacancy occurs in the membership of the Committee, the Secretary shall appoint a member to fill the remainder of the vacated term.

(4) The Committee shall elect one of its members as the Chairman and one of its members as the Vice Chairman. The Vice Chairman shall act as Chairman in the absence or incapacity of, or in the event of a vacancy in the office of, the Chairman.

(5) The Secretary shall, and any other interested agency may, designate a representative to participate as an observer with the Committee. These representatives shall, as appropriate, report to and advise the Committee on matters relating to vessels to which this chapter applies which are under the jurisdiction of their respective agencies. The Secretary's designated representative shall act as executive secretary for the Committee and perform the duties set forth in section 10(c) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 App. U.S.C.).

(c)(1) The Secretary shall, whenever practicable, consult with the Committee before taking any significant action relating to the safe operation of vessels to which this chapter applies.

(2) The Secretary shall consider the information, advice, and recommendations of the Committee in consulting with other agencies and the public or in formulating policy regarding the safe operation of vessels to which this chapter applies.

(d)(1) A member of the Committee who is not an officer or employee of the United States or a member of the Armed Forces, when attending meetings of the Committee or when otherwise engaged in the business of the Committee, is entitled to receive—

(A) compensation at a rate fixed by the Secretary, not exceeding the daily equivalent of the current rate of basic pay in effect for GS–18 of the General Schedule under section 5332 of title 5 including travel time; and

(B) travel or transportation expenses under section 5703 of title 5.


(2) Payments under this section do not render a member of the Committee an officer or employee of the United States or a member of the Armed Forces for any purpose.

(3) A member of the Committee who is an officer or employee of the United States or a member of the Armed Forces may not receive additional pay based on the member's service to the Committee.

(4) The provisions of this section relating to an officer or employee of the United States or a member of the Armed Forces do not apply to a member of a reserve component of the Armed Forces unless that member is in an active status.

(e)(1) The Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App. 1 et seq.) applies to the Committee, except that the Committee terminates on September 30, 2000.

(2) Two years prior to the termination date referred to in paragraph (1) of this subsection, the Committee shall submit to Congress its recommendation regarding whether the Committee should be renewed and continued beyond the termination date.

(Added Pub. L. 100–424, §2(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1588; amended Pub. L. 101–225, title I, §106, Dec. 12, 1989, 103 Stat. 1910; Pub. L. 102–241, §25, Dec. 19, 1991, 105 Stat. 2217; Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §304(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3917.)

References in Text

The Federal Advisory Committee Act, referred to in subsecs. (b)(5) and (e)(1), is Pub. L. 92–463, Oct. 6, 1972, 86 Stat. 770, as amended, which is set out in the Appendix to Title 5, Government Organization and Employees.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (e)(1). Pub. L. 104–324 substituted “2000” for “1994”.

1991—Subsec. (e)(1). Pub. L. 102–241 substituted “1994” for “1992”.

1989—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 101–225 inserted provision that Secretary not seek or use information concerning political affiliation in making appointments.

References in Other Laws to GS–16, 17, or 18 Pay Rates

References in laws to the rates of pay for GS–16, 17, or 18, or to maximum rates of pay under the General Schedule, to be considered references to rates payable under specified sections of Title 5, Government Organization and Employees, see section 529 [title I, §101(c)(1)] of Pub. L. 101–509, set out in a note under section 5376 of Title 5.

Initial Appointments to Commercial Fishing Industry Advisory Committee

Section 2(b) of Pub. L. 100–424 provided that:

“(1) Terms of initial appointments.—Of the members first appointed to the Commercial Fishing Industry Advisory Committee under section 4508 of title 46, United States Code (as amended by this Act)—

“(A) one-third of the members shall serve a term of one year and one-third of the members shall serve a term of two years, to be determined by lot at the first meeting of the Committee; and

“(B) terms may be adjusted to coincide with the Government's fiscal year.

“(2) Completion of initial appointments.—The Secretary shall complete appointment of members pursuant to this subsection not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Sept. 9, 1988].”

CHAPTER 47—ABANDONMENT OF BARGES

Sec.
4701.
Definitions.
4702.
Abandonment of barge prohibited.
4703.
Penalty for unlawful abandonment of barge.
4704.
Removal of abandoned barges.
4705.
Liability of barge removal contractors.

        

§4701. Definitions

In this chapter—

(1) “abandon” means to moor, strand, wreck, sink, or leave a barge of more than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title unattended for longer than forty-five days.

(2) “barge removal contractor” means a person that enters into a contract with the United States to remove an abandoned barge under this chapter.

(3) “navigable waters of the United States” means waters of the United States, including the territorial sea.

(4) “removal” or “remove” means relocation, sale, scrapping, or other method of disposal.

(Added Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5302, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5081; amended Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §718, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3937.)

Amendments

1996—Par. (1). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Short Title

Section 5301 of Pub. L. 102–587 provided that: “This subtitle [subtitle C (§§5301–5305) of title V of Pub. L. 102–587, enacting this chapter, amending section 12301 of this title, and enacting provisions set out below] may be cited as the ‘Abandoned Barge Act of 1992’.”

Application to Certain Barges

Section 5303 of title V of Pub. L. 102–587 provided that: “Chapter 47 of title 46, United States Code, as added by subsection (a) [section 5302], does not apply to a barge abandoned before June 11, 1992, if the barge was removed before the date that is 1 year after the date of enactment of this title [Nov. 4, 1992].”

§4702. Abandonment of barge prohibited

(a) 1 An owner or operator of a barge may not abandon it on the navigable waters of the United States. A barge is deemed not to be abandoned if—

(1) it is located at a Federally- or State-approved mooring area;

(2) it is on private property with the permission of the owner of the property; or

(3) the owner or operator notifies the Secretary that the barge is not abandoned and the location of the barge.

(Added Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5302, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5082.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4703 of this title.

1 So in original. No subsec. (b) has been enacted.

§4703. Penalty for unlawful abandonment of barge

Thirty days after the notification procedures under section 4704(a)(1) are completed, the Secretary may assess a civil penalty of not more than $1,000 for each day of the violation against an owner or operator that violates section 4702. A vessel with respect to which a penalty is assessed under this chapter is liable in rem for the penalty.

(Added Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5302, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5082.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4704 of this title.

§4704. Removal of abandoned barges

(a)(1) The Secretary may remove a barge that is abandoned after complying with the following procedures:

(A) If the identity of the owner or operator can be determined, the Secretary shall notify the owner or operator by certified mail—

(i) that if the barge is not removed it will be removed at the owner's or operator's expense; and

(ii) of the penalty under section 4703.


(B) If the identity of the owner or operator cannot be determined, the Secretary shall publish an announcement in—

(i) a notice to mariners; and

(ii) an official journal of the county in which the barge is located


that if the barge is not removed it will be removed at the owner's or operator's expense.


(2) The United States, and any officer or employee of the United States is not liable to an owner or operator for damages resulting from removal of an abandoned barge under this chapter.

(b) The owner or operator of an abandoned barge is liable, and an abandoned barge is liable in rem, for all expenses that the United States incurs in removing an abandoned barge under this chapter.

(c)(1) The Secretary may, after providing notice under subsection (a)(1), solicit by public advertisement sealed bids for the removal of an abandoned barge.

(2) After solicitation under paragraph (1) the Secretary may award a contract. The contract—

(A) may be subject to the condition that the barge and all property on the barge is the property of the barge removal contractor; and

(B) must require the barge removal contractor to submit to the Secretary a plan for the removal.


(3) Removal of an abandoned barge may begin thirty days after the Secretary completes the procedures under subsection (a)(1).

(Added Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5302, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5082.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 4703 of this title.

§4705. Liability of barge removal contractors

(a)(1) 1 A barge removal contractor and its subcontractor 2 not liable for damages that result from actions taken or omitted to be taken in the course of removing a barge under this chapter.

(2) Paragraph (1) does not apply—

(A) with respect to personal injury or wrongful death; or

(B) if the contractor or subcontractor is grossly negligent or engages in willful misconduct.

(Added Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5302, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5083.)

1 So in original. No subsec. (b) has been enacted.

2 So in original. Probably should be followed by “are”.

Part C—Load Lines of Vessels

Historical and Revision Notes

Part C contains provisions that apply to load lines. A load line is a mark drawn on a vessel that indicates whether a vessel is overloaded. Load line requirements for international voyages are based not only on domestic law but also the 1966 International Load Line Convention.

Part Referred to in Other Sections

This part is referred to in sections 2113, 14305 of this title.

CHAPTER 51—LOAD LINES

Sec.
5101.
Definitions.
5102.
Application.
5103.
Load line requirements.
5104.
Assignment of load lines.
5105.
Load line surveys.
5106.
Load line certificate.
5107.
Delegation of authority.
5108.
Special exemptions.
5109.
Reciprocity for foreign vessels.
5110.
Submersible vessels.
5111.
Providing loading information.
5112.
Loading restrictions.
5113.
Detention of vessels.
5114.
Use of Customs Service officers and employees for enforcement.
[5115.
Repealed.]
5116.
Penalties.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 51 provides for the assignment of load lines and issuance of load line certificates to vessels, and requires that certain classes of vessels be marked with load lines.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(5)(B), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993, struck out item 5115 “Regulations”.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in section 2102 of this title; title 30 section 1422.

§5101. Definitions

In this chapter—

(1) “domestic voyage” means movement of a vessel between places in, or subject to the jurisdiction of, the United States, except movement between—

(A) a place in a territory or possession of the United States or the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands; and

(B) a place outside that territory, possession, or Trust Territory.


(2) “economic benefit of the overloading” means the amount obtained by multiplying the weight of the overload (in tons) by the lesser of—

(A) the average freight rate value of a ton of the vessel's cargo for the voyage; or

(B) $50.


(3) “existing vessel” means—

(A) a vessel on a domestic voyage, the keel of which was laid, or that was at a similar stage of construction, before January 1, 1986; and

(B) a vessel on a foreign voyage, the keel of which was laid, or that was at a similar stage of construction, before July 21, 1968.


(4) “freeboard” means the distance from the mark of the load line assigned under this chapter to the freeboard deck.

(5) “freeboard deck” means the deck or other structure the Secretary prescribes by regulation.

(6) “minimum safe freeboard” means the freeboard that the Secretary decides cannot be reduced safely without limiting the operation of the vessel.

(7) “weight of the overload” means the amount obtained by multiplying the number of inches that the vessel is submerged below the applicable assigned freeboard by the tons-an-inch immersion factor for the vessel at the assigned minimum safe freeboard.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1913.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5101

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86a.

Section 5101 contains definitions that are limited to Chapter 51—Load Lines. Existing Section 46 App. U.S.C. 86a (which defines only the terms “new ship” and “existing ship”) will be replaced by section 5101. Definitions of technical terms (“freeboard”, “freeboard deck”, and “minimum safe freeboard”) have been added for clarity. The definition of the term “new ship” has been deleted because the term is not used in Chapter 51. The definition of “domestic voyage” includes the phrase “places in or subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.” “Places subject to the jurisdiction of the United States” include deep water ports, production platforms, mining sites outside of territorial waters of the United States but within the United States’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) that was established by Presidential Proclamation 5030, dated March 10, 1983, or on the outer continental shelf. The phrases “economic benefit of overloading” and “weight of the overload” have been defined for purposes of establishing a standard method of determining the value of the cargo with which a vessel is overloaded. The value of the cargo will in turn affect the maximum penalty assessed for overloading the vessel. The definition of “freeboard deck” provides the Secretary with the authority to designate as the freeboard deck either the actual deck (on standard vessels) or another structure (on non-standard vessels). Non-standard vessels, for which this regulatory flexibility is necessary, include shelter deck vessels, semi-submersible multi-hull units, container ships, surface effect vessels, and commercial submarines.

Termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands

For termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, see note set out preceding section 1681 of Title 48, Territories and Insular Possessions.

§5102. Application

(a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, this chapter applies to the following:

(1) a vessel of the United States.

(2) a vessel on the navigable waters of the United States.

(3) a vessel—

(A) owned by a citizen of the United States or a corporation established by or under the laws of the United States or a State; and

(B) not registered in a foreign country.


(4) a public vessel of the United States.

(5) a vessel otherwise subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.


(b) This chapter does not apply to the following:

(1) a vessel of war.

(2) a recreational vessel when operated only for pleasure.

(3) a fishing vessel.

(4) a fish processing vessel of not more than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title that—

(A)(i) was constructed as a fish processing vessel before August 16, 1974; or

(ii) was converted for use as a fish processing vessel before January 1, 1983; and

(B) is not on a foreign voyage.


(5) a fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title that—

(A)(i) was constructed, under construction, or under contract to be constructed as a fish tender vessel before January 1, 1980; or

(ii) was converted for use as a fish tender vessel before January 1, 1983; and

(B)(i) is not on a foreign voyage; or

(ii) engaged in the Aleutian trade (except a vessel in that trade assigned a load line at any time before June 1, 1992).


(6) a vessel of the United States on a domestic voyage that does not cross the Boundary Line, except a voyage on the Great Lakes.

(7) a vessel of less than 24 meters (79 feet) overall in length.

(8) a public vessel of the United States on a domestic voyage.

(9) a vessel excluded from the application of this chapter by an international agreement to which the United States Government is a party.

(10) an existing vessel of not more than 150 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title that is on a domestic voyage.

(11) a small passenger vessel on a domestic voyage.

(12) a vessel of the working fleet of the Panama Canal Commission not on a foreign voyage.


(c) On application by the owner and after a survey under section 5105 of this title, the Secretary may assign load lines for a vessel excluded from the application of this chapter under subsection (b) of this section. A vessel assigned load lines under this subsection is subject to this chapter until the surrender of its load line certificate and the removal of its load line marks.

(d) This chapter does not affect an international agreement to which the Government is a party that is not in conflict with the International Convention on Load Lines currently in force for the United States.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1914; Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §602(d), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2991; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §719, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3938.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5102

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86b, 86c, 88.

The delineation of the vessels that will be subject to load line requirements is made in section 5102 as follows: subsection (a) is an all-inclusive list of vessels subject to load line requirements, followed by subsection (b) which specifically exempts those vessels to which the requirements do not apply.

Section 5102(a) lists five categories of vessels which are subject to load line requirements. They are as follows:

Clause (1) regarding “a vessel of the United States” includes all vessels documented under Chapter 121 of title 46 or numbered under Chapter 123 of title 46.

Clause (2) regarding “a vessel on the navigable waters of the United States” includes all domestic or foreign vessels found in or on the navigable waters of the United States.

Clause (3) regarding “a vessel owned by a citizen of the United States or a corporation established by or under the laws of the United States or a State, and not registered in a foreign country” includes all vessels owned by citizens of the United States (as defined in 5107(7)) [sic] and not registered under the laws of a foreign country, wherever the vessels may be located.

Clause (4) regarding “a public vessel of the United States” includes all United States public vessels.

Clause (5) regarding “a vessel otherwise subject to the jurisdiction of the United States” includes foreign vessels that are subject to United States jurisdiction as a result of bilateral agreements, licenses, customary international law or other means, including those using deepwater port or outer continental shelf or EEZ facilities located in areas subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

Section 5102(b) lists the specific exemptions from load line requirements. The specific exemptions may be grouped as follows:

(a) Vessel type (ships of war, pleasure vessels, fishing vessels, small passenger vessels on domestic voyages);

(b) Area of operation (rivers, harbors, bays, sounds, etc.);

(c) Minimum size (length); and

(d) Treaty exclusions.

Clause (1) exempts vessels of war from load line requirements.

Clause (2) exempts recreational vessels operated only for pleasure from load line requirements.

Clause (3) exempts fishing vessels from load line requirements.

Clauses (4) and (5) exempt certain existing fish processing and fish tender vessels not on a foreign voyage from load line requirements. The exception is limited to those vessels not on international voyages to ensure compliance with United States obligations under the International Load Line Convention.

Clause (6) exempts from load line requirements all U.S. vessels operating on domestic voyages within the Boundary Line, as defined in section 2101 of this title, except vessels operating on the Great Lakes.

Clause (7) exempts all vessels that are less than 24 meters (79 feet) in length from load line requirements whether on international or domestic voyages.

Clause (8) exempts from load line requirements those public vessels that are on domestic voyages.

Clause (9) exempts from load line requirements those vessels which have been excluded from the requirements “by specific action of a treaty of the United States.” The only current treaty which excludes vessels from load line requirements is the Convention Between the United States of America and the Dominion of Canada Concerning Load Lines (49 Stat. 2685), which entered into force on August 11, 1934.

Clause (10) exempts from load line requirements existing U.S. vessels that are under 150 gross tons while engaged on a domestic voyage. This is a grandfather provision, continuing the existing exemption for these vessels. Vessels built after January 1, 1986 must be marked with a load line, however, if they are over 79 feet long and do not qualify for any other exemption.

Clause (11) exempts small passenger vessels engaged on domestic voyages from load line requirements. Small passenger vessels are inspected under Subchapter T of Title 46 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Under Subchapter T, the Coast Guard regulates these vessels with regard to safety; the requirements are based on the number of passengers, length, and gross tonnage of the vessel. Safety-related requirements in Subchapter T regulations include hull structure and watertightness, stability, weathertight integrity, and safe movement of persons on deck, the principal safety features covered by load line regulations. This specific exemption from load line requirements for small passenger vessels is consistent with existing law and does not alter in any way the Coast Guard's authority to regulate small passenger vessels under Subchapter T.

Clause (12) exempts vessels of the working voyages from the requirement to have load lines.

Section 5102(c) authorizes the Secretary to assign load lines for any vessel exempted from load line requirements by subsection (b) upon the request of the owner. It also provides that any exempted vessel for which load lines are assigned will remain subject to the load line requirements until its load line certificate is surrendered and the load line marks are removed.

Section 5102(d) provides that this chapter shall not be construed as abrogating the provisions of other treaties and conventions to which the United States is a party, which are not in conflict with the International Convention on Load Lines.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b)(4). Pub. L. 104–324, §719(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “5,000 gross tons” in introductory provisions.

Subsec. (b)(5). Pub. L. 104–324, §719(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons” in introductory provisions.

Subsec. (b)(10). Pub. L. 104–324, §719(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “150 gross tons”.

1990—Subsec. (b)(5)(B). Pub. L. 101–595 amended subpar. (B) generally. Prior to amendment, subpar. (B) read as follows: “is not on a foreign voyage.”

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–595 effective Nov. 16, 1990, with provision that before Jan. 1, 2003, a fish tender vessel is exempt from this chapter when engaged in Aleutian trade if the vessel either operated in that trade before Sept. 8, 1990, or was purchased before that date to be used in such trade and entered into service in that trade before June 1, 1992, did not undergo a major conversion, and did not have a load line assigned at any time before Nov. 16, 1990, see section 602(f) of Pub. L. 101–595, set out as a note under section 4502 of this title.

§5103. Load line requirements

(a) A vessel may be operated only if the vessel has been assigned load lines.

(b) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, and individual in charge of a vessel shall mark and maintain the load lines permanently and conspicuously in the way prescribed by the Secretary.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1915.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5103

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86c, 88b.

Section 5103(a) prohibits a vessel that is subject to load line requirements from operating, unless it has load lines assigned by the Secretary.

Section 5103(b) requires that load lines be permanently and conspicuously maintained in the manner prescribed by the Secretary.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 5110, 5116 of this title.

§5104. Assignment of load lines

(a) The Secretary shall assign load lines for a vessel so that they indicate the minimum safe freeboard to which the vessel may be loaded. However, if the owner requests, the Secretary may assign load lines that result in greater freeboard than the minimum safe freeboard.

(b) In assigning load lines for a vessel, the Secretary shall consider—

(1) the service, type, and character of the vessel;

(2) the geographic area in which the vessel will operate; and

(3) applicable international agreements to which the United States Government is a party.


(c) An existing vessel may retain its load lines assigned before January 1, 1986, unless the Secretary decides that a substantial change in the vessel after those load lines were assigned requires that new load lines be assigned under this chapter.

(d) The minimum freeboard of an existing vessel may be reduced only if the vessel complies with every applicable provision of this chapter.

(e) The Secretary may designate by regulation specific geographic areas that have less severe weather or sea conditions and from which there is adequate time to return to available safe harbors. The Secretary may reduce the minimum freeboard of a vessel operating in these areas.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1915.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5104

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86c, 88a.

Section 5104(a) requires the Secretary to assign load lines indicating the minimum safe freeboard to which a vessel may be loaded. It also authorizes the Secretary to assign a load line that results in a freeboard that is greater than the minimum freeboard, if the owner requests.

Section 5104(b) sets forth guidelines that the Secretary must consider when assigning load lines on vessels.

Section 5104(c) allows an existing vessel to retain its load line assigned before January 1, 1986, unless the Secretary decides that a change made in the vessel requires the assignment of a new load line.

Section 5104(d) is a new provision that requires that a vessel comply with all the provisions of this chapter before the Secretary will consider a reduction in its minimum freeboard. This provision is similar to Article 4(4) of the International Convention on Load Lines.

Section 5104(e) is a new provision that authorized the Secretary to designate specific geographic areas having relatively non-severe weather or sea conditions and from which there is adequate time to return to safe harbors. Section 5104(e) also authorizes the Secretary to reduce the minimum freeboard of vessels operating in these areas. Regulations that have been issued under this authority (46 C.F.R. 44) authorize special service load lines for vessels operating not more than 20 nautical miles offshore or between islands in a group.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 5110 of this title.

§5105. Load line surveys

(a) The Secretary may provide for annual, renewal, and other load line surveys.

(b) In conducting a load line survey, the Secretary shall consider whether—

(1) the hull and fittings of the vessel—

(A) are adequate to protect the vessel from the sea; and

(B) meet other requirements the Secretary may prescribe by regulation;


(2) the strength of the hull is adequate for all loading conditions;

(3) the stability of the vessel is adequate for all loading conditions;

(4) the topsides of the vessel are arranged and constructed to allow rapid overboard drainage of deck water in heavy weather; and

(5) the topsides of the vessel are adequate in design, arrangement, and equipment to protect crewmembers performing outside tasks necessary for safe operation of the vessel.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1916.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5105

Section 5105 authorizes the Secretary of Transportation to provide for load line surveys and requires that while conducting a load line survey, the Secretary must consider various strength, stability, design, and construction features of the vessel.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 5102, 5110 of this title.

§5106. Load line certificate

(a) On finding that a load line survey of a vessel under this chapter is satisfactory and that the vessel's load lines are marked correctly, the Secretary shall issue the vessel a load line certificate and deliver it to the owner, master, or individual in charge of the vessel.

(b) The certificate shall be maintained as required by the Secretary.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1916.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5106

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86c.

Section 5106(a) requires the Secretary to issue a load line certificate upon finding that a vessel has received a satisfactory load line survey and that the vessel's load line is marked correctly.

Section 5106(b) requires that the load line certificate be maintained as required by the Secretary of Transportation. It is expected that the Secretary will require in most cases that the certificate be carried on board the vessel. However, certain types of vessels such as barges do not have facilities for the carriage of certificates. In this case, this provision would give the Secretary the discretion to require that the certificates for the barges be carried on the towing vessels.

§5107. Delegation of authority

(a) The Secretary shall delegate to the American Bureau of Shipping or other similarly qualified organizations the authority to assign load lines, survey vessels, determine that load lines are marked correctly, and issue load line certificates under this chapter.

(b) Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, a decision of an organization delegated authority under subsection (a) of this section related to the assignment of a load line may be appealed to the Secretary.

(c) For a vessel intended to be engaged on a foreign voyage, the Secretary may delegate to another country that is a party to the International Convention on Load Lines, 1966, the authority to assign load lines, survey vessels, determine that the load lines are marked correctly, and issue an International Load Line Certificate (1966).

(d) The Secretary may terminate a delegation made under this section after giving written notice to the organization.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1916.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5107

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86d, 88b.

Section 5107(a) requires the Secretary to delegate the performance of various load line functions to the American Bureau of Shipping or other similarly qualified organizations. In providing for the delegation to a “similarly qualified organization,” the Committee expects that the Secretary will ensure that that organization complies with the same stringent standards and requirements for conducting business that apply to the American Bureau of Shipping.

Section 5107(b) permits an appeal to the Secretary of a decision by an organization that has received delegated authority. This ensures that the Secretary has full oversight of the delegated load line functions.

Section 5107(c) permits the Secretary to delegate various load line functions to another country for vessels that are engaged on a foreign voyage, provided that the country is a party to the International Convention on Load Lines, 1966.

Section 5107(d) clarifies the Secretary's authority to revoke a delegation at any time without cause. This authority is given so that no delay occurs administratively in revoking a delegation whenever the Secretary decides a revocation is warranted.

§5108. Special exemptions

(a) The Secretary may exempt a vessel from any part of this chapter when—

(1) the vessel is entitled to an exemption under an international agreement to which the United States Government is a party; or

(2) under regulations (including regulations on special operations conditions) prescribed by the Secretary, the Secretary finds that good cause exists for granting an exemption.


(b) When the Secretary grants an exemption under this section, the Secretary may issue a certificate of exemption stating the extent of the exemption.

(c) A certificate of exemption issued under subsection (b) of this section shall be maintained as required by the Secretary.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1916.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5108

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86e, 88a.

Section 5108(a) authorizes the Secretary to exempt a vessel from load line requirements if the vessel is entitled to an exemption under an international agreement to which the United States is a party. It also provides the Secretary with the new authority to exempt a vessel from load line requirements if the Secretary finds that there is good reason for granting the exemption. A specific exemption from load line requirements was authorized in Public Law 98–557 for barges operating close to shore between Calumet Harbor, Illinois and Burns Harbor, Indiana, because the geographic area and type of operation in this case did not warrant a requirement for load lines. Additional exemptions currently must be made by an Act of Congress. Section 5108(a) authorizes the Secretary to make such exemptions through regulation, and the Committee expects the Secretary to continue the exemption under this provision for vessels operating close to shore between Calumet Harbor, Illinois and Burns Harbor, Indiana.

Section 5108(b) authorizes the Secretary to issue a certificate of exemption when an exemption is granted.

Section 5108(c) requires that the certificate of exemption be maintained as required by the Secretary in a similar manner as under section 5106(b).

§5109. Reciprocity for foreign vessels

(a) When the Secretary finds that the laws and regulations of a foreign country related to load lines are similar to those of this chapter and the regulations prescribed under this chapter, or when a foreign country is a party to an international load line agreement to which the United States Government is a party, the Secretary shall accept the load line marks and certificate of a vessel of that foreign country as complying with this chapter and the regulations prescribed under this chapter. The Secretary may control the vessel as provided for in the applicable international agreement.

(b) Subsection (a) of this section does not apply to a vessel of a foreign country that does not recognize load lines assigned under this chapter.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1917.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5109

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86f, 88d.

Section 5109(a) requires the Secretary to accept the load line mark and load line certificate of a vessel of a foreign country if the Secretary finds that the load line laws and regulations of that country are similar to those of this chapter, or if that country is a party to an international load line agreement to which the United States is a party.

§5110. Submersible vessels

Notwithstanding sections 5103–5105 of this title, the Secretary may prescribe regulations for submersible vessels to provide a minimum level of safety. In developing the regulations, the Secretary shall consider factors relevant to submersible vessels, including the structure, stability, and watertight integrity of those vessels.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1917.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5110

Section 5110 authorizes the Secretary to prescribe regulations for the marking of load lines of submersible vessels. This general authority has been included in anticipation of the commercial development of submersibles.

§5111. Providing loading information

The Secretary may prescribe regulations requiring the owner, charterer, managing operator, and agent of a vessel to provide loading information (including information on loading distribution, stability, and margin of strength) to the master or individual in charge of the vessel in a language the master or individual understands.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1917.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Section 5111 authorizes the Secretary to prescribe regulations requiring that the master of a vessel be provided with loading and stability information for the vessel that the master understands.

§5112. Loading restrictions

(a) A vessel may not be loaded in a way that submerges the assigned load line or the place at which the load line is required to be marked on the vessel.

(b) If the loading or stability conditions of a vessel change, the master or individual in charge of the vessel, before moving the vessel, shall record in the official logbook or other permanent record of the vessel—

(1) the position of the assigned load line relative to the water surface; and

(2) the draft of the vessel fore and aft.


(c) A vessel may be operated only if the loading distribution, stability, and margin of strength are adequate for the voyage or movement intended.

(d) Subsections (a) and (b) of this section do not apply to a submersible vessel.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1917.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5112

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86g, 88c, 88e.

Section 5112(a) prohibits a vessel from being loaded in a manner that submerges its load line.

Section 5112(b) requires that whenever the loading or stability conditions of a vessel change, the master or individual in charge of the vessel must record in the official logbook the position of the load line and the draft of the vessel.

Section 5112(c) is a new provision that provides that a vessel may be operated only if the loading distribution, stability, and margin of strength are adequate for the intended voyage or movement.

Section 5112(d) provides that subsections (a) and (b) do not apply to a submersible vessel.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 5116 of this title.

§5113. Detention of vessels

(a) When the Secretary believes that a vessel is about to leave a place in the United States in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter, the Secretary may detain the vessel by giving notice to the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel.

(b) A detained vessel may be cleared under section 4197 of the Revised Statutes (46 App. U.S.C. 91) only after the violation has been corrected. If the vessel was cleared before being detained, the clearance shall be withdrawn.

(c) Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a detained vessel may petition the Secretary to review the detention order.

(d) After reviewing a petition, the Secretary may affirm, withdraw, or change the detention order. Before acting on the petition, the Secretary may require any independent survey that may be necessary to determine the condition of the vessel.

(e) The owner of a vessel is liable for the cost incident to a petition for review and any required survey if the vessel is found to be in violation of this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1918.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5113

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86h, 88f.

Section 5113 authorizes the Secretary to detain a vessel if the Secretary believes that the vessel is in violation of the load line requirements, and describes the process through which a vessel may be cleared. It also states that a vessel owner is liable for certain costs resulting from a petition for review and load line survey that is made pursuant to a violation of load line requirements.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 5116 of this title.

§5114. Use of Customs Service officers and employees for enforcement

(a) With the approval of the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary may use an officer or employee of the United States Customs Service to enforce this chapter and the regulations prescribed under this chapter.

(b) The Secretary shall consult with the Secretary of the Treasury before prescribing a regulation that affects the enforcement responsibilities of an officer or employee of the Customs Service.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1918; Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(4), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5114

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86

Section 5114(a) authorizes the Secretary to use a Customs Service officer or employee to enforce load line requirements. The expected role of a Customs Service officer or employee in this regard is to ensure that a vessel is carrying a load line certificate and that the load line is not submerged.

Section 5114(b) requires the Secretary to consult with the Secretary of the Treasury before prescribing a regulation that affects the enforcement responsibilities of a Customs Service officer or employee.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–595 substituted “officers and employees” for “officers employees” in section catchline.

[§5115. Repealed. Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(5)(A), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993]

Section, Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1918, authorized Secretary to prescribe regulations to carry out this chapter.

§5116. Penalties

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, and individual in charge of a vessel violating this chapter or a regulation prescribed under this chapter are each liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000. Each day of a continuing violation is a separate violation. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(b) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, and individual in charge of a vessel allowing, causing, attempting to cause, or failing to take reasonable care to prevent a violation of section 5112(a) of this title are each liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $10,000 plus an additional amount equal to twice the economic benefit of the overloading. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(c) The master or individual in charge of a vessel violating section 5112(b) of this title is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(d) A person causing or allowing the departure of a vessel from a place within the jurisdiction of the United States in violation of a detention order issued under section 5113 of this title commits a class A misdemeanor.

(e) A person causing or allowing the alteration, concealment, or removal of a mark placed on a vessel under section 5103(b) of this title and the regulations prescribed under this chapter, except to make a lawful change or to escape enemy capture in time of war, commits a class A misdemeanor.

(Pub. L. 99–509, title V, §5101(2), Oct. 21, 1986, 100 Stat. 1918; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4302(d), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 538.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised section 5116

Source: Section (U.S. Code) 46 App. U.S.C. 86i, 88g.

Section 5116 provides penalties for violations of load line requirements. The penalties are raised substantially from existing law to provide a sufficient deterrence against violations of the load line requirements and to conform with the level of penalties throughout the subtitle. The monetary penalties have not been changed since the 1930's.

Section 5116(a) raises from $1,000 to $5,000 the maximum penalty for violation of a load line provision under this chapter or a regulation promulgated under this chapter.

Section 5116(b) raises from $1,000 to $10,000 the maximum penalty for loading a vessel in such a way as to submerge the load line. In addition, a violator must pay up to two times the amount of the economic benefit of the overloading.

Section 5116(c) raises from $500 to $5,000 the maximum penalty for a violation of the requirement in section 5112(b) that the load line position and draft of a vessel be noted in the logbook.

Section 5116(a)–(c) also states that the vessel is liable in rem for the penalty.

Section 5116(d) raises from $1,000 to $10,000 the maximum penalty for a violation of a detention order and may also include imprisonment for up to one year.

Section 5116(e) raises from $2,000 to $10,000 the maximum penalty for the alteration, removal, or concealment of a load line mark and may also include imprisonment for two years.

Amendments

1990—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(d)(1), substituted “commits a class A misdemeanor” for “shall be fined not more than $10,000, imprisoned for not more than one year, or both”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(d)(2), substituted “commits a class A misdemeanor” for “shall be fined not more than $10,000, imprisoned for not more than 2 years, or both”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Part D—Marine Casualties

CHAPTER 61—REPORTING MARINE CASUALTIES

Sec.
6101.
Marine casualties and reporting.
6102.
State marine casualty reporting system.
6103.
Penalty.
6104.
Commercial fishing industry vessel casualty statistics.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 61 provides for the reporting of marine casualties and incidents involving all United States flag vessels occurring anywhere in the world and any foreign flag vessel operating on waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

Amendments

1988—Pub. L. 100–424, §4(c), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1591, added item 6104.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in section 13102 of this title.

§6101. Marine casualties and reporting

(a) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations on the marine casualties to be reported and the manner of reporting. The regulations shall require reporting the following marine casualties:

(1) death of an individual.

(2) serious injury to an individual.

(3) material loss of property.

(4) material damage affecting the seaworthiness or efficiency of the vessel.

(5) significant harm to the environment.


(b) A marine casualty shall be reported within 5 days as provided in this part and regulations prescribed under this part. Each report filed under this section shall include information as to whether the use of alcohol contributed to the casualty.

[(c) Repealed. Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §212(b)(1)(B), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2306.]

(d)(1) This part applies to a foreign vessel when involved in a marine casualty on the navigable waters of the United States.

(2) This part applies, to the extent consistent with generally recognized principles of international law, to a foreign vessel constructed or adapted to carry, or that carries, oil in bulk as cargo or cargo residue involved in a marine casualty described under subsection (a)(4) or (5) in waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, including the Exclusive Economic Zone.

(e) 1 A marine casualty not resulting in the death of an individual shall be classified according to the gravity of the casualty, as prescribed by regulation, giving consideration to the extent of injuries to individuals, the extent of property damage, the dangers that the casualty creates, and the size, occupation, and means of propulsion of each vessel involved.

(e)(1) 1 This chapter applies to a marine casualty involving a United States citizen on a foreign passenger vessel operating south of 75 degrees north latitude, west of 35 degrees west longitude, and east of the International Date Line; or operating in the area south of 60 degrees south latitude that—

(A) embarks or disembarks passengers in the United States; or

(B) transports passengers traveling under any form of air and sea ticket package marketed in the United States.


(2) When there is a marine casualty described in paragraph (1) of this subsection and an investigation is conducted, the Secretary shall ensure that the investigation—

(A) is thorough and timely; and

(B) produces findings and recommendations to improve safety on passenger vessels.


(3) When there is a marine casualty described in paragraph (1) of this subsection, the Secretary may—

(A) seek a multinational investigation of the casualty under auspices of the International Maritime Organization; or

(B) conduct an investigation of the casualty under chapter 63 of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 536; Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §212(b)(1), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2306; Pub. L. 98–557, §7(b)(1), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2862; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4106(b), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 513; Pub. L. 102–241, §33, Dec. 19, 1991, 105 Stat. 2222.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6101 46:239

46:1486

33:361

33:365

6101(b) 33:362

Section 6101(a) requires the Secretary to prescribe regulations on the types and manner of reporting of marine casualties to be reported under subsection (b) and incidents to be reported under subsection (c). The casualties to be reported must include casualties involving death to an individual, serious injury to an individual, material loss of property, and any damage affecting the seaworthiness or efficiency of the vessel, in addition to the other casualties (if any) the Secretary feels should be reported.

Subsection (b) requires the owner, charterer, agent, master, operator, or individual in charge of a vessel to report within 5 days, any casualty required in subsection (a) or by regulation.

Subsection (c) requires the owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent of a U.S. vessel to immediately determine the status of their vessel if they have not heard from the vessel, if it has not passed a scheduled point, or for any other reason which may indicate the vessel may have been lost or imperiled. If the owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent cannot reach the vessel and determine that it is operating safely, then they shall immediately notify the Coast Guard and provide the Coast Guard with the name and number of the vessel, the names of individuals on board, and any other information that the Coast Guard may request. If communication with the vessel indicates the vessel was involved in a casualty, then the owner, charterer, or agent of the vessel must immediately notify the Coast Guard under subsection (b). Notification to the Coast Guard does not impose or create any additional responsibility for the Coast Guard to take search and rescue action beyond those already existing under title 14, United States Code.

Subsection (d) makes it clear that the reporting requirements under subsection (b) are applicable to foreign vessels involved in a marine casualty when operating on the navigable waters of the United States, whether in innocent passage or not.

Subsection (e) provides for the classification of marine casualties by regulation according to the gravity of the casualty, injuries to individuals, property damage, dangers created, and size, occupation, and means of propulsion of each vessel.

Amendments

1991—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 102–241 added subsec. (e) relating to passenger vessel investigations.

1990—Subsec. (a)(5). Pub. L. 101–380, §4106(b)(1), added par. (5).

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 101–380, §4106(b)(2), designated existing provisions as par. (1) and added par. (2).

1984—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 98–498, §212(b)(1)(A), struck out “and incidents” after “marine casualties” in provisions preceding par. (1).

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 98–557 inserted provisions relating to alcohol as a contributing factor to the casualty.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 98–498, §212(b)(1)(B), struck out subsec. (c) which related to determination of status of a vessel that may be lost or imperiled and notification of the Coast Guard.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Effective Date of 1984 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 98–498 effective 180 days after Oct. 1, 1984, see section 214 of Pub. L. 98–498, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2306 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 6103, 9101 of this title; title 49 section 1133.

1 So in original. Two subsecs. (e) have been enacted.

§6102. State marine casualty reporting system

(a) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations for a uniform State marine casualty reporting system for vessels. Regulations shall prescribe the casualties to be reported and the manner of reporting. A State shall compile and submit to the Secretary reports, information, and statistics on casualties reported to the State, including information and statistics concerning the number of casualties in which the use of alcohol contributed to the casualty.

(b) The Secretary shall collect, analyze, and publish reports, information, and statistics on marine casualties together with findings and recommendations the Secretary considers appropriate. If a State marine casualty reporting system provides that information derived from casualty reports (except statistical information) may not be publicly disclosed, or otherwise prohibits use by the State or any person in any action or proceeding against a person, the Secretary may use the information provided by the State only in the same way that the State may use the information.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 536; Pub. L. 98–557, §7(b)(2), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2862.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6102 46:1486

Section 6102(a) requires the Secretary to prescribe regulations for a uniform State marine casualty reporting system for vessels. The Secretary may limit the scope and types of casualties to be investigated and reported by the State. It also requires the State to submit to the Secretary reports, information, and statistics on casualties reported to the State.

Subsection (b) requires the Secretary to analyze the information that is received from the State. It also prohibits the Secretary from disclosing the information, proceeding against any person based on this information, or otherwise using the information, if the State cannot use the information in the same way.

Amendments

1984—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 98–557 inserted provisions relating to alcohol as a contributing factor to the casualty.

Plan To Increase Marine Casualty Reporting

Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §314(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3922, provided that: “Not later than one year after enactment of this Act [Oct. 19, 1996], the Secretary of Transportation shall, in consultation with appropriate State agencies, submit to the Committee on Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a plan to increase reporting of vessel accidents to appropriate State law enforcement officials.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 6103, 13102 of this title.

§6103. Penalty

(a) An owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel failing to report a casualty as required under section 6101 of this title or a regulation prescribed under section 6101 or 6102 is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of not more than $25,000.

(b) A person failing to comply with section 6104 of this title or a regulation prescribed under that section is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $5,000.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 536; Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §212(b)(2), Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2306; Pub. L. 100–424, §4(b), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1590; Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §§306(a), 314(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3918, 3922.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6103 33:361

33:362

Section 6103 provides for a civil penalty of $1,000 for any owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel that fails to report a casualty required to be reported under subsection (b) of section 6101 or an incident required to be reported under subsection (c) of section 6101.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “or 6102” before “is liable” and substituted “not more than $25,000” for “$1,000”.

1988—Pub. L. 100–424 designated existing provisions as subsec. (a) and added subsec. (b).

1984—Pub. L. 98–498 struck out “or incident” after “a casualty”.

Effective Date of 1984 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 98–498 effective 180 days after Oct. 19, 1984, see section 214 of Pub. L. 98–498, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2306 of this title.

§6104. Commercial fishing industry vessel casualty statistics

(a) The Secretary shall compile statistics concerning marine casualties from data compiled from insurers of fishing vessels, fish processing vessels, and fish tender vessels.

(b) A person underwriting primary insurance for a fishing vessel, fish processing vessel, or fish tender vessel shall submit periodically to the Secretary data concerning marine casualties that is required by regulations prescribed by the Secretary.

(c) After consulting with the insurance industry, the Secretary shall prescribe regulations under this section to gather a statistical base for analyzing vessel risks.

(d) The Secretary may delegate to a qualified person that has knowledge and experience in the collection of statistical insurance data the authority of the Secretary under this section to compile statistics from insurers.

(Added Pub. L. 100–424, §4(a), Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1590.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 6103 of this title.

CHAPTER 63—INVESTIGATING MARINE CASUALTIES

Sec.
6301.
Investigation of marine casualties.
6302.
Public investigations.
6303.
Rights of parties in interest.
6304.
Subpena authority.
6305.
Reports of investigations.
6306.
Penalty.
6307.
Notifications to Congress.
6308.
Information barred in legal proceedings.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 63 sets forth the scope and procedures for the investigation of marine casualties and incidents that are required to be reported by Chapter 61, as well as the rights of parties involved in a casualty.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §313(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3922, added item 6308.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in sections 6101, 7705 of this title.

§6301. Investigation of marine casualties

The Secretary shall prescribe regulations for the immediate investigation of marine casualties under this part to decide, as closely as possible—

(1) the cause of the casualty, including the cause of any death;

(2) whether an act of misconduct, incompetence, negligence, unskillfulness, or willful violation of law committed by any individual licensed, certificated, or documented under part E of this subtitle has contributed to the cause of the casualty, or to a death involved in the casualty, so that appropriate remedial action under chapter 77 of this title may be taken;

(3) whether an act of misconduct, incompetence, negligence, unskillfulness, or willful violation of law committed by any person, including an officer, employee, or member of the Coast Guard, contributed to the cause of the casualty, or to a death involved in the casualty;

(4) whether there is evidence that an act subjecting the offender to a civil penalty under the laws of the United States has been committed, so that appropriate action may be undertaken to collect the penalty;

(5) whether there is evidence that a criminal act under the laws of the United States has been committed, so that the matter may be referred to appropriate authorities for prosecution; and

(6) whether there is need for new laws or regulations, or amendment or repeal of existing laws or regulations, to prevent the recurrence of the casualty.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 537.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6301 46:239

Section 6301 requires the Secretary to prescribe regulations for the immediate investigation of marine casualties in order to determine, as closely as possible, the cause of the casualty; whether the actions of individuals licensed, certificated, or documented have contributed to the cause of the casualty, whether the action of an individual in the Coast Guard contributed to the cause of the casualty, whether there is evidence that an act subjecting the offender to civil or criminal penalty has been committed, and whether there is a need for new laws or to amend or repeal existing laws or regulations in order to prevent a recurrence of the casualty.

Construction

Section 2(h) of Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 599, provided that: “Chapter 63 of title 46 (as enacted by section 1 of this Act) does not supersede section 304(a)(1)(E) of the Independent Safety Board Act of 1974 (49 App. U.S.C. 1903(a)(1)(E)) [see 49 U.S.C. 1131(a)(1)(E), (b)].”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 6307, 6308 of this title; title 49 section 1133.

§6302. Public investigations

Each investigation conducted under this chapter and regulations prescribed under this chapter shall be open to the public, except when evidence affecting the national security is to be received.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 537.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6302 ..............................................

Section 6302 provides that each investigation conducted under this chapter shall be open to the public, except when evidence affecting the national security of the United States is to be received.

§6303. Rights of parties in interest

In an investigation conducted under this chapter, the following shall be allowed to be represented by counsel, to cross-examine witnesses, and to call witnesses:

(1) an owner,

(2) any holder of a license or certificate of registry,

(3) any holder of a merchant mariner's document,

(4) any other person whose conduct is under investigation, and

(5) any other party in interest.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 537.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6303 46:239(d)

Section 6303 provides for the rights of parties in interest to an investigation by allowing them to be represented by counsel, to cross examine witnesses, and to call witnesses. This section merely states the rights of a party in interest but does not necessarily determine who is to be considered a party in interest. Clause (4) states that these rights are to be afforded to “any other person whose conduct is under investigation” (emphasis added). This implies that clauses (1) through (3) apply to individuals whose conduct is under investigation. If any individual does not qualify for these rights under clauses (1) through (4), that individual can still be entitled to these rights under clause (5), if designated as a party in interest. Since parties in interest are not clearly set out by statute, the Secretary has the authority to do this by regulation under section 6301. Thus the rights of these parties as presently provided for in existing law have been retained.

§6304. Subpena authority

(a) In an investigation under this chapter, the attendance and testimony of witnesses, including parties in interest, and the production of any evidence may be compelled by subpena. The subpena authority granted by this section is coextensive with that of a district court of the United States, in civil matters, for the district in which the investigation is conducted.

(b) When a person fails to obey a subpena issued under this section, the district court of the United States for the district in which the investigation is conducted or in which the person failing to obey is found, shall on proper application issue an order directing that person to comply with the subpena. The court may punish as contempt any disobedience of its order.

(c) A witness complying with a subpena issued under this section may be paid for actual travel and attendance at the rate provided for witnesses in the district courts of the United States.

(d) An official designated to conduct an investigation under this part may issue subpenas as provided in this section and administer oaths to witnesses.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 538.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6304 46:239(e)

46:239(f)

Section 6304 provides an officer investigating a marine casualty with the necessary subpena authority to require the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of evidence. It also authorizes a district court of the United States to direct compliance with a subpena.

§6305. Reports of investigations

(a) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations about the form and manner of reports of investigations conducted under this part.

(b) Reports of investigations conducted under this part shall be made available to the public. This subsection does not require the release of information described by section 552(b) of title 5 or protected from disclosure by another law of the United States.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 538; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §305, Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3420.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6305 46:239(g)

46:239(k)

Section 6305 requires the Secretary to prescribe regulations about the form and manner of reports of investigations of marine casualties. It also provides that the reports shall be available to the public, except for any information they contain related to national security.

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 105–383 substituted “. This subsection does not require the release of information described by section 552(b) of title 5 or protected from disclosure by another law of the United States.” for “, except to the extent that they contain information related to the national security.”

§6306. Penalty

A person attempting to coerce a witness, or to induce a witness, to testify falsely in connection with a marine casualty, or to induce a witness to leave the jurisdiction of the United States, shall be fined $5,000, imprisoned for one year, or both.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 538.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6306 46:239(i)

Section 6306 provides for a $5,000 criminal penalty for anyone attempting to coerce or to induce a witness to a marine casualty investigation to testify falsely or to leave the jurisdiction of the United States.

§6307. Notifications to Congress

(a) The Secretary shall notify the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries of the House of Representatives of any hearing, before the hearing occurs, investigating a major marine casualty involving a death under section 6301 of this title.

(b) The Secretary shall submit to a committee referred to in subsection (a) of this section information on a major marine casualty that is requested by that committee or the chairman of the committee if the submission of that information is not prohibited by a law of the United States.

(c) The Secretary shall submit annually to Congress a summary of the marine casualties reported during the prior fiscal year, together with a brief statement of action taken concerning those casualties.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 538.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
6307 46:239(j)

33:366

Subsection (a) requires the Secretary to notify the Merchant Marine and Fisheries Committee and the Senate Commerce Committee in advance of any hearing concerning a major marine accident (as defined by regulation) where there has been a loss of life.

Subsection (b) requires the Coast Guard to supply the Merchant Marine and Fisheries Committee and the Senate Commerce Committee with any requested marine casualty information, if its release is not specifically prohibited by law.

Subsection (c) requires the Secretary to submit an annual report to Congress summarizing the marine casualties reported during the prior fiscal year, with a brief statement of action taken concerning those casualties.

Abolition of House Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries

Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries of House of Representatives abolished and its jurisdiction transferred by House Resolution No. 6, One Hundred Fourth Congress, Jan. 4, 1995. For treatment of references to Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries, see section 1(b)(3) of Pub. L. 104–14, set out as a note preceding section 21 of Title 2, The Congress.

§6308. Information barred in legal proceedings

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no part of a report of a marine casualty investigation conducted under section 6301 of this title, including findings of fact, opinions, recommendations, deliberations, or conclusions, shall be admissible as evidence or subject to discovery in any civil or administrative proceedings, other than an administrative proceeding initiated by the United States. Any employee of the Department of Transportation, and any member of the Coast Guard, investigating a marine casualty pursuant to section 6301 of this title, shall not be subject to deposition or other discovery, or otherwise testify in such proceedings relevant to a marine casualty investigation, without the permission of the Secretary of Transportation. The Secretary shall not withhold permission for such employee or member to testify, either orally or upon written questions, on solely factual matters at a time and place and in a manner acceptable to the Secretary if the information is not available elsewhere or is not obtainable by other means.

(b) Nothing in this section prohibits the United States from calling the employee or member as an expert witness to testify on its behalf. Further, nothing in this section prohibits the employee or member from being called as a fact witness in any case in which the United States is a party. If the employee or member is called as an expert or fact witness, the applicable Federal Rules of Civil Procedure govern discovery. If the employee or member is called as a witness, the report of a marine casualty investigation conducted under section 6301 of this title shall not be admissible, as provided in subsection (a), and shall not be considered the report of an expert under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.

(c) The information referred to in subsections (a) and (b) of this section shall not be considered an admission of liability by the United States or by any person referred to in those conclusions and statements.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §313(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3921.)

References in Text

The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, referred to in subsec. (b), are set out in the Appendix to Title 28, Judiciary and Judicial Procedure.

Part E—Merchant Seamen Licenses, Certificates, and Documents

Historical and Revision Notes

Part E establishes the authority for the Coast Guard to issue, suspend, and revoke licenses, certificates of registry, and merchant mariner's documents for individuals who are to be engaged on vessels of the United States.

Amendments

1985—Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(B), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 67, substituted “Merchant Seamen Licenses, Certificates, and” for “Licenses, Certificates, and Merchant Mariners’ ” in part E heading.

Part Referred to in Other Sections

This part is referred to in sections 3315, 6301, 14305 of this title.

CHAPTER 71—LICENSES AND CERTIFICATES OF REGISTRY

Sec.
7101.
Issuing and classifying licenses and certificates of registry.
7102.
Citizenship.
7103.
Licenses for radio officers.
7104.
Certificates for medical doctors and nurses.
7105.
Oaths.
7106.
Duration of licenses.
7107.
Duration of certificates of registry.
7108.
Termination of licenses and certificates of registry.
7109.
Review of criminal records.
7110.
Exhibiting licenses.
7111.
Oral examinations for licenses.
7112.
Licenses of masters or mates as pilots.
7113.
Exemption from draft.
7114.
Fees.

        

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4102(e)(2), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 510, substituted “Review of criminal records” for “Renewal of licenses” in item 7109.

1984—Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(8)(A), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 447, substituted “Oral examinations for licenses” for “Licenses for fishing vessels not subject to inspection” in item 7111.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in section 1132 of Appendix to this title; title 47 section 155; title 50 App. section 1744.

§7101. Issuing and classifying licenses and certificates of registry

(a) Licenses and certificates of registry are established for individuals who are required to hold licenses or certificates under this subtitle.

(b) Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, the Secretary—

(1) issues the licenses and certificates of registry; and

(2) may classify the licenses and certificates of registry as provided in subsections (c) and (f) of this section, based on—

(A) the tonnage, means of propulsion, and horsepower of machine-propelled vessels;

(B) the waters on which vessels are to be operated; or

(C) other reasonable standards.


(c) The Secretary may issue licenses in the following classes to applicants found qualified as to age, character, habits of life, experience, professional qualifications, and physical fitness:

(1) masters, mates, and engineers.

(2) pilots.

(3) operators.

(4) radio officers.


(d) In classifying individuals under subsection (c)(1) of this section, the Secretary shall establish, when possible, suitable career patterns and service and other qualifying requirements appropriate to the particular service or industry in which the individuals are engaged.

(e) An individual may be issued a license under subsection (c)(2) of this section only if the applicant—

(1) is at least 21 years of age;

(2) is of sound health and has no physical limitations that would hinder or prevent the performance of a pilot's duties;

(3) has a thorough physical examination each year while holding the license, except that this requirement does not apply to an individual who will serve as a pilot only on a vessel of less than 1,600 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title;

(4) demonstrates, to the satisfaction of the Secretary, that the applicant has the requisite general knowledge and skill to hold the license;

(5) demonstrates proficiency in the use of electronic aids to navigation;

(6) maintains adequate knowledge of the waters to be navigated and knowledge of regulations for the prevention of collisions in those waters;

(7) has sufficient experience, as decided by the Secretary, to evidence ability to handle any vessel of the type and size which the applicant may be authorized to pilot; and

(8) meets any other requirement the Secretary considers reasonable and necessary.


(f) The Secretary may issue certificates of registry in the following classes to applicants found qualified as to character, knowledge, skill, and experience:

(1) pursers.

(2) medical doctors.

(3) professional nurses.


(g) The Secretary may not issue a license or certificate of registry under this section unless an individual applying for the license or certificate makes available to the Secretary, under section 206(b)(7) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982 (23 U.S.C. 401 note), any information contained in the National Driver Register related to an offense described in section 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) of that Act committed by the individual.

(h) The Secretary may review the criminal record of an individual who applies for a license or certificate of registry under this section.

(i) The Secretary shall require the testing of an individual who applies for issuance or renewal of a license or certificate of registry under this chapter for use of a dangerous drug in violation of law or Federal regulation.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 539; Pub. L. 98–557, §29(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2873; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4101(a), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 509; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §720, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3938.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7101 46:214
  46:224
  46:226
  46:228
  46:229
  46:229a
  46:229b
  46:242
  46:243
  46:244
  46:247

Section 7101(a) provides the authority for the establishment of licenses and certificates of registry for officers and individuals operating vessels who are required to hold them under Subtitle II.

Subsection (b) authorizes the Secretary to issue licenses and certificates of registry based on tonnage, means of propulsion, horsepower, vessel operating area, and other reasonable standards.

Subsection (c) authorizes the Secretary to issue licenses to masters, mates, engineers, pilots, operators, and radio officers when found qualified as to age, character, habits of life, experience, professional qualifications, and physical fitness. These qualifying standards must by necessity be reasonable and related to the rigors of the profession.

Subsection (d) requires the Secretary to establish, when possible, suitable career patterns and service for and other qualifying requirements appropriate to the particular service or industry for the individuals so engaged.

Subsection (e) sets forth the requirements that pilots must meet before being issued a license.

Subsection (f) authorizes the Secretary to issue certificates of registry to qualified individuals as pursers, medical doctors, and professional nurses.

References in Text

Sections 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) and 206(b)(7) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982, referred to in subsec. (g), are sections 205(a)(3)(A), (B) and 206(b)(7) of Pub. L. 97–364, which are set out as a note under section 401 of Title 23, Highways.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (e)(3). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,600 gross tons”.

1990—Subsecs. (g) to (i). Pub. L. 101–380 added subsecs. (g) to (i).

1984—Subsec. (e)(3). Pub. L. 98–557 inserted exemption for pilots on a vessel of less than 1,600 gross tons.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Plan for Licensing Operators of Fishing Industry Vessels

Pub. L. 100–424, §3, Sept. 9, 1988, 102 Stat. 1590, provided that: “The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall, within two years after the date of enactment of this Act [Sept. 9, 1988], and in close consultation with the Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Advisory Committee established under section 4508 of title 46, United States Code (as amended by this Act), prepare and submit to the Congress a plan for the licensing of operators of documented fishing, fish processing, and fish tender vessels. The plan shall take into consideration the nature and variety of the different United States fisheries and of the vessels engaged in those fisheries, the need to license all operators or only those working in certain types of fisheries or vessels, and other relevant factors.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 8101, 8302, 8304, 8502, 8503, 8703, 9302, 9303 of this title; section 1295c of Appendix to this title; title 49 section 30305.

§7102. Citizenship

Licenses and certificates of registry for individuals on documented vessels may be issued only to citizens of the United States.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7102 46:242

46:1132(a)

Section 7102 requires that any individual issued a license or certificate of registry allowing the individual to be engaged on a documented vessel must be a U.S. citizen.

§7103. Licenses for radio officers

(a) A license as radio officer may be issued only to an applicant who has a first-class or second-class radiotelegraph operator license issued by the Federal Communications Commission.

(b) Except as provided in section 7318 of this title, this part does not affect the status of radiotelegraph operators serving on board vessels operating only on the Great Lakes.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7103 46:229a

46:229b

46:229g

Section 7103 requires an applicant for a license as a radio officer to have, as a prerequisite, a first-class or second-class radiotelegraph operator license issued by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). It also excepts radiotelegraph operators that are engaged on Great Lakes vessels from the requirement of having to obtain a radio officer's license.

§7104. Certificates for medical doctors and nurses

A certificate of registry as a medical doctor or professional nurse may be issued only to an applicant who has a license as a medical doctor or registered nurse, respectively, issued by a State.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7104 46:243

Section 7104 requires an applicant for a certificate of registry as a medical doctor or professional nurse to have, as a prerequisite, a license as a medical doctor or registered nurse issued by a State.

§7105. Oaths

An applicant for a license or certificate of registry shall take, before the issuance of the license or certificate, an oath before a designated official, without concealment or reservation, that the applicant will perform faithfully and honestly, according to the best skill and judgment of the applicant, all the duties required by law.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7105 46:229e

46:231

46:244

Section 7105 requires all individuals who wish to be issued a license or certificate of registry to take an oath before a government official that they will perform all the duties required by law according to their best skill and judgment.

§7106. Duration of licenses

A license issued under this part is valid for 5 years and may be renewed for additional 5-year periods. However, the validity of a license issued to a radio officer is conditioned on the continuous possession by the holder of a first-class or second-class radiotelegraph operator license issued by the Federal Communications Commission.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4102(a), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 509.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7106 46:214(c)

46:225

46:226

46:228

46:229

46:229c

Section 7106 sets a 5 year time limit on the validity of a license. It also requires a licensed radio officer to be in continuous possession of an FCC license.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–380 inserted “and may be renewed for additional 5-year periods” after “for 5 years”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Termination of Existing Licenses, Certificates, and Documents; Applicability of 1990 Amendment

Section 4102(d) of Pub. L. 101–380 provided that: “A license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document issued before the date of the enactment of this section [Aug. 18, 1990] terminates on the day it would have expired if—

“(1) subsections (a), (b), and (c) [amending this section and sections 7107 and 7302 of this title] were in effect on the date it was issued; and

“(2) it was renewed at the end of each 5-year period under section 7106, 7107, or 7302 of title 46, United States Code.”

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 7108 of this title.

§7107. Duration of certificates of registry

A certificate of registry issued under this part is valid for 5 years and may be renewed for additional 5-year periods. However, the validity of a certificate issued to a medical doctor or professional nurse is conditioned on the continuous possession by the holder of a license as a medical doctor or registered nurse, respectively, issued by a State.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4102(b), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 509.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7107 46:243

Section 7107 specifies that there is no time limit on the validity of a certificate of registry issued to a medical doctor or a professional nurse but is conditioned on the continuous possession of the appropriate license issued by a State.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–380 substituted “is valid for 5 years and may be renewed for additional 5-year periods” for “is not limited in duration”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Termination of Existing Licenses, Certificates, and Documents; Applicability of 1990 Amendment

For provisions that a certificate of registry issued before Aug. 18, 1990, terminates on the day it would have expired if the amendment to this section by Pub. L. 101–380 were in effect on date it was issued and was renewed at the end of each 5-year period under this section, see section 4102(d) of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as a note under section 7106 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 7108 of this title.

§7108. Termination of licenses and certificates of registry

When the holder of a license or certificate of registry, the duration of which is conditioned under section 7106 or 7107 of this title, fails to hold the license required as a condition, the license or certificate of registry issued under this part is terminated.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7108 46:229c

46:243

Section 7108 specifies if any individual issued a license or certificate of registry fails to have the required FCC or appropriate State medical license, the license or certificate is automatically terminated. The suspension and revocation procedures provided in chapter 77 are not applicable in these cases.

§7109. Review of criminal records

The Secretary may review the criminal record of each holder of a license or certificate of registry issued under this part who applies for renewal of that license or certificate of registry.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 540; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4102(e)(1), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 510.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7109 46:225

46:233

Section 7109 authorizes the Secretary to renew licenses and certificates of registry for additional 5 year periods.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–380 substituted “Review of criminal records” for “Renewal of licenses” in section catchline and amended text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: “A license issued under this part may be renewed for additional 5-year periods.”

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§7110. Exhibiting licenses

Each holder of a license issued under this part shall display, within 48 hours after employment on a vessel for which that license is required, the license in a conspicuous place on the vessel.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 541.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7109 46:229f

46:232

Section 7110 requires licensed individuals to display the license in a conspicuous place on the vessel within 48 hours after they are employed.

§7111. Oral examinations for licenses

An individual may take an oral examination for a license to serve on a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel not required to be inspected under part B of this subtitle.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 541; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(8)(B), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 447; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(10), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7109 46:224a(2)

Section 7111 provides for oral tests for licenses for individuals on fishing vessels that are not required to be inspected under part B.

Amendments

1986—Pub. L. 99–307 substituted “part” for “Part”.

1984—Pub. L. 98–364 substituted in section catchline “Oral examinations for licenses” for “Licenses for fishing vessels not subject to inspection” and in text “An individual may take an oral examination for a license to serve on a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel not required to be inspected under Part B of this subtitle” for “Examinations for licensing individuals on fishing vessels not required to be inspected under part B of this subtitle shall be oral”.

§7112. Licenses of masters or mates as pilots

A master or mate licensed under this part who also qualifies as a pilot is not required to hold 2 licenses. Instead, the qualification of the master or mate as pilot shall be endorsed on the master's or mate's license.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 541.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7112 46:230

Section 7112 provides for the endorsement of a master's or mate's license as a pilot if they meet those specifications. These individuals do not have to hold two separate licenses.

§7113. Exemption from draft

A licensed master, mate, pilot, or engineer of a vessel inspected under part B of this subtitle, propelled by machinery or carrying hazardous liquid cargoes in bulk, is not liable to draft in time of war, except for performing duties authorized by the license. When performing those duties in the service of the United States Government, the master, mate, pilot, or engineer is entitled to the highest rate of wages paid in the merchant marine of the United States for similar services. If killed or wounded when performing those duties, the master, mate, pilot, or engineer, or the heirs or legal representatives of the master, mate, pilot, or engineer, are entitled to all the privileges under the pension laws of the United States provided to members of the Armed Forces.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 541.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7113 46:225

Section 7113 exempts licensed masters, mates, pilots, and engineers of inspected vessels that are propelled by machinery or carrying hazardous liquid cargo from the Selective Service draft in time of war.

This section also provides that, while serving in that capacity during war, they shall be entitled to the highest rate of pay paid in the U.S. merchant marine for similar services.

If a master, mate, pilot, or engineer is killed or wounded when performing those duties during a war, these individuals, their heirs or legal representatives, are entitled to all the privileges provided to members of the Armed Forces under the pension laws of the United States.

§7114. Fees

The Secretary may prescribe by regulation reasonable fees for the inspection of and the issuance of a certificate, license, or permit related to small passenger vessels and sailing school vessels.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 541.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7114 46:390a(b)

Section 7114 allows the Secretary to prescribe reasonable fees for the issuance of a certificate of inspection, license, or registry, or permits related to small passenger vessels and sailing school vessels.

CHAPTER 73—MERCHANT MARINERS’ DOCUMENTS

Sec.
7301.
General.
7302.
Issuing merchant mariners’ documents and continuous discharge books.
7303.
Possession and description of merchant mariners’ documents.
7304.
Citizenship notation on merchant mariners’ documents.
7305.
Oaths for holders of merchant mariners’ documents.
7306.
General requirements and classifications for able seamen.
7307.
Able seamen—unlimited.
7308.
Able seamen—limited.
7309.
Able seamen—special.
7310.
Able seamen—offshore supply vessels.
7311.
Able seamen—sail.
7311a.
Able seamen—fishing industry.
7312.
Scale of employment.
7313.
General requirements for members of engine departments.
7314.
Service requirements for qualified members of engine departments.
7315.
Training.
7316.
Lifeboatmen.
7317.
Tankermen.
7318.
Radiotelegraph operators on Great Lakes.
7319.
Records of merchant mariners’ documents.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 73 establishes the general requirements for the issuance of a merchant mariners’ document to those individuals who are required to have a document prior to engagement or employment on certain vessels of the United States.

Amendments

1984—Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(9)(A), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 448, added item 7311a.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in section 1132 of Appendix to this title; title 50 App. section 1744.

§7301. General

(a) In this chapter—

(1) “service on deck” means service in the deck department in work related to the work usually performed on board vessels by able seamen and may include service on fishing, fish processing, fish tender vessels and on public vessels of the United States;

(2) 360 days is equal to one year's service; and

(3) a day is equal to 8 hours of labor or duty.


(b) The Secretary may prescribe regulations to carry out this chapter.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 541; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(9)(B), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 448.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7301 46:672(c)

Section 7301 defines “service on deck”, “one year's service” and “day” with respect to the qualifying time for the issuance of various types of endorsements as able seamen. This section also provides the Secretary with the authority to prescribe regulations to carry out this chapter.

Amendments

1984—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 98–364 substituted “fishing, fish processing, fish tender vessels” for “decked fishing vessels”.

§7302. Issuing merchant mariners’ documents and continuous discharge books

(a) The Secretary shall issue a merchant mariner's document to an individual required to have that document under part F of this subtitle if the individual satisfies the requirements of this part. The document serves as a certificate of identification and as a certificate of service, specifying each rating in which the holder is qualified to serve on board vessels on which that document is required under part F.

(b) The Secretary also may issue a continuous discharge book to an individual issued a merchant mariner's document if the individual requests.

(c) The Secretary may not issue a merchant mariner's document under this chapter unless the individual applying for the document makes available to the Secretary, under section 206(b)(7) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982 (23 U.S.C. 401 note), any information contained in the National Driver Register related to an offense described in section 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) of that Act committed by the individual.

(d) The Secretary may review the criminal record of an individual who applies for a merchant mariner's document under this section.

(e) The Secretary shall require the testing of an individual applying for issuance or renewal of a merchant mariner's document under this chapter for the use of a dangerous drug in violation of law or Federal regulation.

(f) A merchant mariner's document issued under this chapter is valid for 5 years and may be renewed for additional 5-year periods.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 542; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §§4101(b), 4102(c), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 509.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7302 46:239a(c)

46:643(a)

46:643(c)

46:672(i)

Section 7302(a) requires the Secretary to issue a merchant mariner's document to qualified individuals required to have that document as a prerequisite to employment on certain vessels of the United States. The purpose of the document is to serve as positive identification and to specify each rating in which the individual is qualified to serve on vessels.

Subsection (b) allows the Secretary to issue a continuous discharge book to an individual who requests a book.

References in Text

Sections 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) and 206(b)(7) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982, referred to in subsec. (c), are sections 205(a)(3)(A), (B) and 206(b)(7) of Pub. L. 97–364, which are set out as a note under section 401 of Title 23, Highways.

Amendments

1990—Subsecs. (c) to (e). Pub. L. 101–380, §4101(b), added subsecs. (c) to (e).

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 101–380, §4102(c), added subsec. (f).

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Termination of Existing Licenses, Certificates, and Documents; Applicability of 1990 Amendment

For provisions that a merchant mariner's document issued before Aug. 18, 1990, terminates on the day it would have expired if the amendment to this section by section 4102(c) of Pub. L. 101–380 were in effect on date it was issued and was renewed at the end of each 5-year period under this section, see section 4102(d) of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as a note under section 7106 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 8701 of this title; title 49 section 30305.

§7303. Possession and description of merchant mariners’ documents

A merchant mariner's document shall be retained by the seaman to whom issued. The document shall contain the signature, notations of nationality, age, and physical description, the photograph, the thumbprint, and the home address of the seaman. In addition, the document shall specify the rate or ratings in which the seaman is qualified to serve.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 542.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7303 46:643(a)

Section 7303 requires seamen to retain their merchant mariner's documents. It also specifies the information that is to be contained in the document.

§7304. Citizenship notation on merchant mariners’ documents

An individual applying for a merchant mariner's document shall provide satisfactory proof that the individual is a citizen of the United States before that notation is made on the document.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 542.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7304 46:643(b)

Section 7304 specifies, that before a merchant mariner's document is noted to specify that the individual is a U.S. citizen, the individual must provide satisfactory proof that he is a citizen. This does not impose a requirement of United States citizenship as a condition for issuance of a document.

§7305. Oaths for holders of merchant mariners’ documents

An applicant for a merchant mariner's document shall take, before issuance of the document, an oath that the applicant will perform faithfully and honestly all the duties required by law, and will carry out the lawful orders of superior officers.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 542.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7305 ..............................................

The requirement for an oath, drawn from a clause which had appeared in 46 U.S.C. 672(g), and administered by the Coast Guard to all applicants, was repealed in a 1980 amendment by section 4 of Public Law 96–378 (94 Stat. 1516). Since no specific comment was made regarding the elimination in 1980 and the agency has continued to administer an oath to all applicants, this provision is being reinstated. The Committee believes the oath will contribute to the discipline and order necessary in the merchant marine.

§7306. General requirements and classifications for able seamen

(a) To qualify for an endorsement as able seaman authorized by this section, an applicant must provide satisfactory proof that the applicant—

(1) is at least 18 years of age;

(2) has the service required by the applicable section of this part;

(3) is qualified professionally as demonstrated by an applicable examination or educational requirements; and

(4) is qualified as to sight, hearing, and physical condition to perform the seaman's duties.


(b) The classifications authorized for endorsement as able seaman are the following:

(1) able seaman—unlimited.

(2) able seaman—limited.

(3) able seaman—special.

(4) able seaman—offshore supply vessels.

(5) able seaman—sail.

(6) able seaman—fishing industry.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 542; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(9)(C), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 448.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7306 46:672(b)

Section 7306(a) establishes the minimum requirements an individual must meet before being issued a merchant mariner's document endorsed for able seamen.

Subsection (b) establishes the classifications of able seamen—unlimited, able seamen—limited, able seamen—special, able seamen—offshore supply vessels, and able seamen—sail.

Amendments

1984—Subsec. (b)(6). Pub. L. 98–364 added par. (6).

Effective Date

Provisions of this section (related to able seaman—sail) effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

Acceptance of Certain Services Toward Endorsement as Able Seaman

Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §602(e)(3), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2992, provided that: “For the purposes of chapter 73 of title 46, United States Code, the Secretary of Transportation shall accept the service used by an individual to qualify for an endorsement as able seaman—fishing industry as qualifying service toward an endorsement as an able seaman—

“(A) under sections 7307 and 7309 of that title; or

“(B) if the service is on board a vessel of at least 100 gross tons, under section 7308 of that title.”

§7307. Able seamen—unlimited

The required service for the endorsement of able seaman—unlimited, qualified for unlimited service on a vessel on any waters, is at least 3 years’ service on deck on board vessels operating at sea or on the Great Lakes.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 543.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7307 46:672(b)(1)

Section 7307 requires individuals to have at least 3 years service on deck on vessels operating at sea or on the Great Lakes before their merchant mariner's documents can be endorsed as able seamen—unlimited.

Acceptance of Certain Services Toward Endorsement as Able Seaman

Service used to qualify for endorsement as able seaman—fishing industry to be accepted as qualifying service toward an endorsement under this section, see section 602(e)(3) of Pub. L. 101–595, set out as a note under section 7306 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 7312, 7315 of this title.

§7308. Able seamen—limited

The required service for the endorsement of able seaman—limited, qualified for limited service on a vessel on any waters, is at least 18 months’ service on deck on board vessels of at least 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title operating on the oceans or navigable waters of the United States (including the Great Lakes).

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 543; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §721, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3938.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7308 46:672(b)(2)

Section 7308 establishes the minimum service requirements for an individual to qualify for an endorsement as able seamen—limited.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Acceptance of Certain Services Toward Endorsement as Able Seaman

Service used to qualify for endorsement as able seaman—fishing industry to be accepted as qualifying service toward an endorsement under this section, see section 602(e)(3) of Pub. L. 101–595, set out as a note under section 7306 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 7312, 7315 of this title.

§7309. Able seamen—special

The required service for the endorsement of able seaman—special, qualified for special service on a vessel on any waters, is at least 12 months’ service on deck on board vessels operating on the oceans or the navigable waters of the United States (including the Great Lakes).

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 543.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7309 46:672(b)(3)

Section 7309 establishes the minimum service requirements for an individual to qualify as able seamen—special.

Acceptance of Certain Services Toward Endorsement as Able Seaman

Service used to qualify for endorsement as able seaman—fishing industry to be accepted as qualifying service toward an endorsement under this section, see section 602(e)(3) of Pub. L. 101–595, set out as a note under section 7306 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 7312, 7315 of this title.

§7310. Able seamen—offshore supply vessels

For service on a vessel of less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title engaged in support of exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral or energy resources, an individual may be rated as able seaman—offshore supply vessels if the individual has at least 6 months’ service on deck on board vessels operating on the oceans or the navigable waters of the United States (including the Great Lakes).

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 543; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §722, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3938.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7310 46:672(b)(3)

Section 7310 establishes the minimum service requirements for an individual to serve as able seamen—offshore supply vessels on vessels of less than 500 gross tons engaged in the exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral or energy resources.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 7312, 7315 of this title.

§7311. Able seamen—sail

For service on a sailing school vessel on any waters, an individual may be rated as able seaman—sail if the individual has at least 6 months’ service on deck on sailing school vessels, oceanographic research vessels powered primarily by sail, or equivalent sailing vessels operating on the oceans or navigable waters of the United States (including the Great Lakes).

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 543.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7311 46:672(b)(4)

Section 7311 establishes the minimum service requirements for an individual to qualify as able seamen—sail on board sailing vessels.

Effective Date

Section effective Apr. 15, 1984, see section 2(g)(1) of Pub. L. 98–89, set out as a note under section 3101 of this title.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 7315 of this title.

§7311a. Able seamen—fishing industry

For service on a fish processing vessel, an individual may be rated as able seaman—fishing industry if the individual has at least 6 months’ service on deck on board vessels operating on the oceans or the navigable waters of the United States (including the Great Lakes).

(Added Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(9)(D), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 448.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 7312 of this title.

§7312. Scale of employment

(a) Individuals qualified as able seamen—unlimited under section 7307 of this title may constitute all of the able seamen required on a vessel.

(b) Individuals qualified as able seamen—limited under section 7308 of this title may constitute all of the able seamen required on a vessel of less than 1,600 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title or on a vessel operating on the Great Lakes and the Saint Lawrence River as far east as Sept Iles. Individuals qualified as able seamen—limited may constitute not more than 50 percent of the number of able seamen required on board other vessels.

(c) Individuals qualified as able seamen—special under section 7309 of this title may constitute—

(1) all of the able seamen required on a vessel of not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title or on a seagoing barge or towing vessel; and

(2) not more than 50 percent of the number of able seamen required on board other vessels.


(d) Individuals qualified as able seamen—offshore supply vessels under section 7310 of this title may constitute all of the able seamen required on board a vessel of less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title engaged in support of exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral or energy resources.

(e) When the service of able seamen—limited or able seamen—special is authorized for only a part of the required number of able seamen on board a vessel, the combined percentage of those individuals so qualified may not be greater than 50 percent of the required number.

(f) Individuals qualified as able seamen—fishing industry under section 7311a of this title may constitute—

(1) all of the able seamen required on a fish processing vessel entered into service before January 1, 1988, and of more than 1,600 gross tons but not more than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title; and

(2) all of the able seamen required on a fish processing vessel entered into service after December 31, 1987, and having more than 16 individuals on board primarily employed in the preparation of fish or fish products but of not more than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 543; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(9)(E), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 448; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(11), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §723, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3938.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7312 46:672(f)

Section 7312(a) provides that able seamen—unlimited may constitute all of the able seamen required on a vessel.

Subsection (b) provides that able seamen—limited may constitute 100 percent of the able seamen required on board vessels of less than 600 gross tons operating on the Great Lakes and 50 percent of the number of able seamen required on the larger vessels.

Subsection (c) provides that able seamen—special may constitute 100 percent of the able seamen required on vessels not more than 500 gross tons, or a seagoing barge or towing vessel. Able seamen—special may only constitute up to 50 percent of the number of able seamen required on other vessels.

Subsection (d) provides that able seamen—offshore supply vessels may constitute 100 percent of the number of able seamen required on vessels of less than 500 gross tons engaged in support of exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral or energy facilities. They may not serve on board other vessels as an able seaman until they have the appropriate required document.

Subsection (e) provides that the total number of able seamen—limited or able seamen—special may not be greater than 50 percent of the required number of able seamen on a vessel.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324, §723(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,600 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §723(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 104–324, §723(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (f)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §723(4), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “5,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (f)(2). Pub. L. 104–324, §723(5), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “5,000 gross tons”.

1986—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 99–307 substituted “able seamen—limited” for “able seaman—limited”.

1984—Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 98–364 added subsec. (f).

§7313. General requirements for members of engine departments

(a) Classes of endorsement as qualified members of the engine department on vessels of at least 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title (except vessels operating on rivers or lakes (except the Great Lakes)) may be prescribed by regulation.

(b) The ratings of wiper and coal passer are entry ratings and are not ratings as qualified members of the engine department.

(c) An applicant for an endorsement as qualified member of the engine department must provide satisfactory proof that the applicant—

(1) has the service required by section 7314 of this title;

(2) is qualified professionally as demonstrated by an applicable examination; and

(3) is qualified as to sight, hearing, and physical condition to perform the member's duties.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 544; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §724, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3939.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7313 46:672(g)

Section 7313(a) authorizes the Secretary to establish classes of endorsement for qualified members of the engine department on vessels of 100 gross tons or more (except on vessels operating on rivers and lakes (except the Great Lakes)).

Subsection (b) establishes the entry ratings of wiper and coal passer, but specifically excludes them as qualified members of the engine department.

Subsection (c) establishes the minimum qualifications individuals must meet in order to have their documents endorsed as a qualified member of engine department.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 7314 of this title.

§7314. Service requirements for qualified members of engine departments

To qualify for an endorsement as qualified member of the engine department, an applicant must provide proof that the applicant has 6 months’ service in the related entry rating as described in section 7313(b) of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 544.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7314 46:672(g)

Section 7314 requires individuals who wish to have their documents endorsed as a qualified member of the engine department must have at least 6 months service as a wiper or coal passer.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in sections 7313, 7315 of this title.

§7315. Training

(a) Graduation from a nautical school vessel approved under law and regulation may be substituted for the service requirements under section 7307 or 7314 of this title.

(b) The satisfactory completion of other courses of instruction approved by the Secretary may be substituted for not more than one-third of the required service on deck at sea under sections 7307–7311 of this title.

(c) The satisfactory completion of other courses of instruction approved by the Secretary may be substituted for not more than one-half of the required service at sea under section 7314 of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 544.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7315 46:672(c)

Section 7315 specifies the training or course work that may be substituted for service requirements for an endorsement as an able seaman or a qualified member of the engine department.

§7316. Lifeboatmen

To qualify for an endorsement as lifeboatman, an applicant must provide satisfactory proof that the applicant—

(1) has the service or training required by regulation;

(2) is qualified professionally as demonstrated by examination; and

(3) is qualified professionally by actual demonstration.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 544.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7316 46:643(l)

Section 7316 establishes the minimum standards an individual must meet in order to qualify for an endorsement as lifeboatman.

§7317. Tankermen

(a) The Secretary shall prescribe procedures, standards, and qualifications for the issuance of certificates or endorsements as tankerman, stating the types of oil or hazardous material that can be handled with safety to the vessel and the marine environment.

(b) An endorsement as tankerman shall indicate the grades or types of cargo the holder is qualified and authorized to handle with safety on board vessels.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 545.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7317(a) 46:391a(10)(C)

Section 7317(a) establishes the minimum standards an individual must meet in order to qualify for an endorsement as tankerman for various types of oil or hazardous substances.

Subsection (b) specifies that the tankerman's endorsement must specify the grades or types of cargo the holder is qualified and allowed to handle.

§7318. Radiotelegraph operators on Great Lakes

(a) A radiotelegraph operator on the Great Lakes only shall have a first-class or second-class radiotelegraph operator's license issued by the Federal Communications Commission.

(b) An endorsement as radiotelegraph operator on the Great Lakes only ends if the holder ceases to hold the license issued by the Commission.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 545.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7318 46:229c

46:229g

46:643(a)

Section 7318 specifies that radiotelegraph operators on the Great Lakes shall have a first-class or second-class radiotelegraph operator's license issued by the FCC and need not be licensed as a radio operator by the Coast Guard. However, an endorsement as radio telegraph operator has to be noted on his merchant mariners’ document. If the holder ceases to have a valid FCC license, then the endorsement is terminated automatically without recourse to suspension and revocation proceedings.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 7103 of this title.

§7319. Records of merchant mariners’ documents

The Secretary shall maintain records on each merchant mariner's document issued, including the name and address of the seaman to whom issued and the next of kin of the seaman. The records are not open to general or public inspection.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 545.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7319 46:643(f)

Section 7319 requires the Secretary to maintain records on each merchant mariner's document issued and the seaman's next of kin. However, these records are not open for general or public inspection.

CHAPTER 75—GENERAL PROCEDURES FOR LICENSING, CERTIFICATION, AND DOCUMENTATION

Sec.
7501.
Duplicates.
7502.
Records.
7503.
Dangerous drugs as grounds for denial.
7504.
Travel and expense reimbursement.
7505.
Review of information in National Driver Register.
7506.
Convention tonnage for licenses, certificates, and documents.

        

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §745(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3943, added item 7506.

1990—Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4105(c), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 513, added item 7505.

1986—Pub. L. 99–640, §10(b)(2)(B), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3550, added item 7504.

§7501. Duplicates

(a) If a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document issued under this part is lost as a result of a marine casualty, the holder shall be supplied with a duplicate without cost.

(b) For any other loss, the seaman may obtain a duplicate on payment of reasonable costs prescribed by regulation by the Secretary.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 545; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(C), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7501 46:643(h)

Section 7501(a) provides that if a license, certificate or document issued to an individual is lost due to a marine casualty, the individual will be supplied with a duplicate without cost.

Subsection (b) provides that if a license, certificate or document is lost for any reason other than a marine casualty, the seaman must pay a reasonable cost for the replacement.

Amendments

1985—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 99–36 substituted “certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document” for “certificate, or document”.

§7502. Records

The Secretary shall maintain computerized records on the issuances, denials, suspensions, and revocations of licenses, certificates of registry, merchant mariners’ documents, and endorsements on those licenses, certificates, and documents.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 545; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4114(e), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 517.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7502 46:414

46:643(f)

Section 7502 requires the Secretary to maintain records on the issuances, denials, suspensions, and revocations of licenses, certificates of registry, merchant mariner's documents, and endorsements.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–380 substituted “maintain computerized records” for “maintain records”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§7503. Dangerous drugs as grounds for denial

[(a) Repealed. Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(a)(2)(B), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511.]

(b) A license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document authorized to be issued under this part may be denied to an individual who—

(1) within 10 years before applying for the license, certificate, or document, has been convicted of violating a dangerous drug law of the United States or of a State; or

(2) when applying, has ever been a user of, or addicted to, a dangerous drug unless the individual provides satisfactory proof that the individual is cured.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 545; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(D), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(a)(2)(B), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7503(a) 46:239a(a)

46:239b(a)

Section 7503 provides that the issuance of a license, certificate, or document may be denied by the Secretary to any individual who has been convicted, within 10 years, of violating a dangerous drug law of the United States or to any individual who has been a user of a dangerous drug, unless the individual provides satisfactory proof of being cured. This includes PCP and LSD. See also the note to section 7704. However, the Secretary may deny issuing a license, certificate or document to the individual who has used or been convicted of a “controlled substance” such as LSD if that use or conviction occurred before the date of enactment of this Act.

Amendments

1990—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 101–380 repealed subsec. (a) which defined “dangerous drug” for purpose of this section as narcotic drug, controlled substance, and marihuana.

1985—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 99–36 substituted “certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document” for first reference to “certificate, or document”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in title 49 section 1133.

§7504. Travel and expense reimbursement

When a requirement to qualify for the issuance of, or endorsement on, a certificate, license, or document under this part is administered at a place at the request of an applicant or an applicant's representative, the applicant or representative may reimburse the Secretary for the travel and subsistence expenses incurred by the personnel assigned to perform the administration of the requirement. Amounts received as reimbursement under this section shall be credited to the appropriation for operating expenses of the Coast Guard.

(Added Pub. L. 99–640, §10(b)(2)(A), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3549.)

§7505. Review of information in National Driver Register

The Secretary shall make information received from the National Driver Register under section 206(b)(7) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982 (23 U.S.C. 401 note) available to an individual for review and written comment before denying, suspending, revoking, or taking any other action relating to a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document authorized to be issued for that individual under this part, based on that information.

(Added Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4105(b)(1), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 512.)

Effective Date

Section applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as a note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§7506. Convention tonnage for licenses, certificates, and documents

Notwithstanding any provision of section 14302(c) or 14305 of this title, the Secretary may—

(1) evaluate the service of an individual who is applying for a license, a certificate of registry, or a merchant mariner's document by using the tonnage as measured under chapter 143 of this title for the vessels on which that service was acquired, and

(2) issue the license, certificate, or document based on that service.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §745(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3942.)

CHAPTER 77—SUSPENSION AND REVOCATION

Sec.
7701.
General.
7702.
Administrative procedure.
7703.
Bases for suspension or revocation.
7704.
Dangerous drugs as grounds for revocation.
7705.
Subpenas and oaths.

        

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in sections 6301, 9303 of this title; title 49 sections 1133, 30305.

§7701. General

(a) The purpose of suspension and revocation proceedings is to promote safety at sea.

(b) Licenses, certificates of registry, and merchant mariners’ documents may be suspended or revoked for acts described in section 7703 of this title.

(c) When a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document has been revoked under this chapter, the former holder may be issued a new license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document only after—

(1) the Secretary decides, under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, that the issuance is compatible with the requirement of good discipline and safety at sea; and

(2) the former holder provides satisfactory proof that the bases for revocation are no longer valid.


(d) The Secretary may prescribe regulations to carry out this chapter.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 546; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(c), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7701 46:239(g)

Section 7701 establishes the general purpose of suspension and revocation proceedings, which is to promote safety at sea. This section also provides the Secretary with the authority to suspend or revoke licenses, certificates, and documents, as well as the authority to issue a new license, certificate or document to an individual when the issuance is compatible with the requirements of good discipline and safety at sea. It also provides for necessary regulatory authority to carry out its purposes.

Amendments

1990—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 101–380 amended subsec. (c) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (c) read as follows: “When a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document has been revoked under this chapter, the former holder may be issued a new license, certificate, or document only after it has been decided, under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, that the issuance is compatible with the requirements of good discipline and safety at sea.”

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§7702. Administrative procedure

(a) Sections 551–559 of title 5 apply to each hearing under this chapter about suspending or revoking a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document.

(b) The individual whose license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document has been suspended or revoked under this chapter may appeal, within 30 days, the suspension or revocation to the Secretary.

(c)(1) The Secretary shall request a holder of a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document to make available to the Secretary, under section 206(b)(4) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982 (23 U.S.C. 401 note), all information contained in the National Driver Register related to an offense described in section 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) of that Act committed by the individual.

(2) The Secretary shall require the testing of the holder of a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document for use of alcohol and dangerous drugs in violation of law or Federal regulation. The testing may include preemployment (with respect to dangerous drugs only), periodic, random, and reasonable cause testing, and shall include post-accident testing.

(d)(1) The Secretary may temporarily, for not more than 45 days, suspend and take possession of the license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document held by an individual if, when acting under the authority of that license, certificate, or document—

(A) that individual performs a safety sensitive function on a vessel, as determined by the Secretary; and

(B) there is probable cause to believe that the individual—

(i) has performed the safety sensitive function in violation of law or Federal regulation regarding use of alcohol or a dangerous drug;

(ii) has been convicted of an offense that would prevent the issuance or renewal of the license, certificate, or document; or

(iii) within the 3-year period preceding the initiation of a suspension proceeding, has been convicted of an offense described in section 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982.


(2) If a license, certificate, or document is temporarily suspended under this section, an expedited hearing under subsection (a) of this section shall be held within 30 days after the temporary suspension.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 546; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(3), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 67; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(a)(1), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 510; Pub. L. 105–383, title III, §304(a), Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3419.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7702 ..............................................

Section 7702(a) provides that Sections 551–559 of title 5 of the United States Code shall apply to each involving the suspension or revocation of a license, certificate, or document.

Subsection (b) allows an individual whose license, certificate, or document has been suspended or revoked to appeal it to the Secretary within 30 days.

References in Text

Sections 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) and 206(b)(4) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982, referred to in subsecs. (c)(1) and (d)(1)(B)(iii), are sections 205(a)(3)(A), (B) and 206(b)(4) of Pub. L. 97–364, which are set out as a note under section 401 of Title 23, Highways.

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 105–383 inserted second sentence and struck out former second sentence which read as follows: “The testing may include preemployment (with respect to dangerous drugs only), periodic, random, reasonable cause, and post accident testing.”

1990—Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 101–380 added subsecs. (c) and (d).

1985—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 99–36 substituted “mariner's” for “mariners’ ”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§7703. Bases for suspension or revocation

A license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document issued by the Secretary may be suspended or revoked if the holder—

(1) when acting under the authority of that license, certificate, or document—

(A) has violated or fails to comply with this subtitle, a regulation prescribed under this subtitle, or any other law or regulation intended to promote marine safety or to protect navigable waters; or

(B) has committed an act of incompetence, misconduct, or negligence;


(2) is convicted of an offense that would prevent the issuance or renewal of a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document; or

(3) within the 3-year period preceding the initiation of the suspension or revocation proceeding is convicted of an offense described in section 205(a)(3)(A) or (B) of the National Driver Register Act of 1982 (23 U.S.C. 401 note).

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 546; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(E), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(b), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7703 46:226

46:239

46:240

46:246(c)

This section provides the bases for suspension and revocation of a license, certificate or document. The individual must have been operating under the authority of the required license, certificate, or document and has violated a law or regulation intended to promote marine safety or to protect the navigable waters or has committed an act of incompetence, misconduct, or negligence.

Amendments

1990—Pub. L. 101–380 amended section generally. Prior to amendment, section read as follows: “A license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document issued by the Secretary may be suspended or revoked if, when acting under the authority of that license, certificate, or document, the holder—

“(1) has violated or failed to comply with this subtitle, a regulation prescribed under this subtitle, or any other law or regulation intended to promote marine safety or to protect navigable waters.

“(2) has committed an act of incompetence, misconduct, or negligence.”

1985—Pub. L. 99–36 substituted “certificate of registry,” for first reference to “certificate,”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 7701 of this title; title 49 section 30305.

§7704. Dangerous drugs as grounds for revocation

[(a) Repealed. Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(a)(2)(B), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511.]

(b) If it is shown at a hearing under this chapter that a holder of a license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document issued under this part, within 10 years before the beginning of the proceedings, has been convicted of violating a dangerous drug law of the United States or of a State, the license, certificate, or document shall be revoked.

(c) If it is shown that a holder has been a user of, or addicted to, a dangerous drug, the license, certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document shall be revoked unless the holder provides satisfactory proof that the holder is cured.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 546; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(F), (G), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4103(a)(2)(B), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7704(a) 46:239a(a)
7704(b) 46:239b(b)(1)
7704(c) 46:239b(b)(2)

Section 7704 requires the Secretary to revoke the license, certificate, or document of any individual who has been convicted of a dangerous drug law within 10 years before the beginning of the suspension or revocation procedures. This section has expanded current law to incorporate violations involving “controlled substances” which are not narcotic. This includes PCP and LSD. Unless it can be done under existing law, the suspension or revocation of an individual's license based on the use of a “controlled substance” only applies to the use or conviction after the date of enactment of this Act.

This section also provides that anyone who has been a user of or addicted to a dangerous drug since July 14, 1954, may be subjected to revocation procedures unless the individual provides satisfactory proof of being cured.

In sections 7503(b)(2) and 7704(c), the term “use”, when applying to “narcotic drugs” or “controlled substances”, is not intended to include the use of “off the shelf” drugs or drugs acquired with a prescription lawfully issued by a medical doctor, as long as the drugs are used by the individual in the recommended amounts and the drugs will not impair the individual's ability to perform duties.

Amendments

1990—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 101–380 struck out subsec. (a) which defined “dangerous drug” for purpose of this section as narcotic drug, controlled substance, and marihuana.

1985—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(F), substituted “merchant mariner's document” for first reference to “document”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(G), substituted “certificate of registry, or merchant mariner's document” for “certificate, or document”.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

§7705. Subpenas and oaths

(a) An official designated to investigate or preside at a hearing on matters that are grounds for suspension or revocation of licenses, certificates of registry, and merchant mariners’ documents may administer oaths and issue subpenas to compel the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of records or other evidence during investigations and at hearings.

(b) The jurisdictional limits of a subpena issued under this section are the same as, and are enforceable in the same manner as, subpenas issued under chapter 63 of this title.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 547; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(9)(H), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
7705 46:239(e)

Section 7705 allows officials designated to investigate or preside at hearings on matters that are grounds for suspension and revocation proceedings to administer oaths and issue subpenas.

Amendments

1985—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 99–36 substituted “certificates of registry, and merchant mariners’ documents” for “certificates, and documents”.

Part F—Manning of Vessels

Historical and Revision Notes

Part F provides for the manning of vessels including requirements generally for the number of individuals required, qualifications and conditions of employment, and duties; for masters and other licenses and registered individuals; for pilots; for unlicensed personnel; for small vessels; for tank vessels; and for pilotage on the Great Lakes. The Committee intends that all manning provisions throughout this subtitle will be interpreted to be consistent with one another.

Part Referred to in Other Sections

This part is referred to in sections 2101, 2113, 7302, 12306, 14305 of this title.

CHAPTER 81—GENERAL

Sec.
8101.
Complement of inspected vessels.
8102.
Watchmen.
8103.
Citizenship and Naval Reserve requirements.
8104.
Watches.
8105.
Fishing vessel exemption.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 81 provides for the composition, citizenship, working hours, and other limitations affecting the complement of licensed individuals and crew on certain vessels, a safety watch onboard passenger vessels, membership in the Naval Reserve for certain deck and engineer officers, and penalties for violating, and regulatory authority for implementing its provisions.

Amendments

1996—Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1146(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3993, added item 8105.

1990—Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(7)(B), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993, struck out item 8105 “Regulations”.

Chapter Referred to in Other Sections

This chapter is referred to in section 2102 of this title.

§8101. Complement of inspected vessels

(a) The certificate of inspection issued to a vessel under part B of this subtitle shall state the complement of licensed individuals and crew (including lifeboatmen) considered by the Secretary to be necessary for safe operation. A manning requirement imposed on—

(1) a sailing school vessel shall consider the participation of sailing school instructors and sailing school students in the operation of that vessel;

(2) a mobile offshore drilling unit shall consider the specialized nature of the unit; and

(3) a tank vessel shall consider the navigation, cargo handling, and maintenance functions of that vessel for protection of life, property, and the environment.


(b) The Secretary may modify the complement, by endorsement on the certificate, for reasons of changed conditions or employment.

(c) A requirement made under this section by an authorized official may be appealed to the Secretary under prescribed regulations.

(d) A vessel to which this section applies may not be operated without having in its service the complement required in the certificate of inspection.

(e) When a vessel is deprived of the service of a member of its complement without the consent, fault, or collusion of the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel, the master shall engage, if obtainable, a number of members equal to the number of those of whose services the master has been deprived. The replacements must be of the same or a higher grade or rating than those whose places they fill. If the master finds the vessel is sufficiently manned for the voyage, and replacements are not available to fill all the vacancies, the vessel may proceed on its voyage. Within 12 hours after the vessel arrives at its destination, the master shall report in writing to the Secretary the cause of each deficiency in the complement. A master failing to make the report is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $1,000 for each deficiency.

(f) The owner, charterer, or managing operator of a vessel not manned as required by this section is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of $10,000.

(g) A person may not employ an individual as, and an individual may not serve as, a master, mate, engineer, radio officer, or pilot of a vessel to which this part applies or which is subject to inspection under chapter 33 of this title if the individual is not licensed by the Secretary. A person (including an individual) violating this subsection is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of not more than $10,000. Each day of a continuing violation is a separate offense.

(h) The owner, charterer, or managing operator of a freight vessel of less than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title, a small passenger vessel, or a sailing school vessel not manned as required by this section is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of $1,000. The vessel also is liable in rem for the penalty.

(i) When the 2 next most senior licensed officers on a vessel reasonably believe that the master or individual in charge of the vessel is under the influence of alcohol or a dangerous drug and is incapable of commanding the vessel, the next most senior master, mate, or operator licensed under section 7101(c)(1) or (3) of this title shall—

(1) temporarily relieve the master or individual in charge;

(2) temporarily take command of the vessel;

(3) in the case of a vessel required to have a log under chapter 113 of this title, immediately enter the details of the incident in the log; and

(4) report those details to the Secretary—

(A) by the most expeditious means available; and

(B) in written form transmitted within 12 hours after the vessel arrives at its next port.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 547; Pub. L. 98–557, §29(b), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2873; Pub. L. 99–640, §11(b), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3550; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §§4104, 4114(c), 4302(e), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 511, 517, 538; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §725, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3939.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8101 46:222

46:224

46:446d

Section 8101 provides for the required composition of the complement of licensed individuals and crew of an inspected vessel when being operated.

Subsection (a) requires that the certificate of inspection for a vessel state the manning necessary for safe navigation. Manning means the complement of licensed officers and crew (including lifeboatmen). Any manning requirements for sailing school vessels shall take into account the participation of sailing school instructors and sailing school students in the operation of those vessels.

Subsection (b) permits the Secretary to modify the manning requirements for reasons of changed conditions or employment.

Subsection (c) permits an appeal to the Secretary of any manning requirements made by an authorized official.

Subsection (d) prohibits the operation of a vessel without the manning required in the vessel's certificate of inspection.

When a vessel has a vacancy in the manning required by its certificate of inspection without the consent, fault, or collusion of anyone responsible for the management or operation of the vessel, subsection (e) requires that the master hire replacements, if possible, in the same or higher grade or rating. However, if the master finds the vessel sufficiently manned and replacements are not available, the vessel may proceed on its voyage. Within 12 hours of arrival at its destination, the master is required to file a written report with the Secretary stating the cause of each deficiency or be liable for a civil penalty. The report of deficiency should include both the reason for the vacancy in the first instance and the reason for the unavailability of a qualified replacement.

Subsections (f), (g) and (h) prescribe civil penalties for noncompliance with manning requirements. Subsection (g) also prohibits the employment or service of an individual in a licensed capacity who is not licensed by the Secretary.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

1990—Subsec. (a)(3). Pub. L. 101–380, §4114(c), added par. (3).

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(e)(1), substituted “$1,000” for “$50”.

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(e)(2), substituted “$10,000” for “$100, or, for a deficiency of a licensed individual, a penalty of $500”.

Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(e)(3), substituted “$10,000” for “$500”.

Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 101–380, §4104, added subsec. (i).

1986—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 99–640 amended subsec. (a) generally, inserting cl. (1) designation before “a sailing school” and adding cl. (2).

1984—Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 98–557 substituted provisions relating to inspection under chapter 33 of this title, for provisions relating to applicability of part B of this subtitle.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 8301 of this title.

§8102. Watchmen

(a) The owner, charterer, or managing operator of a vessel carrying passengers during the nighttime shall keep a suitable number of watchmen in the vicinity of the cabins or staterooms and on each deck to guard against and give alarm in case of a fire or other danger. An owner, charterer, or managing operator failing to provide watchmen required by this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $1,000.

(b) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a fish processing vessel of more than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title shall keep a suitable number of watchmen trained in firefighting on board when hotwork is being done to guard against and give alarm in case of a fire.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 548; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(10), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 448; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §726, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3939.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8102 46:470

46:471

Section 8102 requires the person responsible for the management of a vessel carrying passengers to have a suitable watch at night to guard against, and to sound an alarm in case of fire or other danger, or be liable for a civil penalty.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

1984—Pub. L. 98–364 designated existing provisions as subsec. (a) and added subsec. (b).

§8103. Citizenship and Naval Reserve requirements

(a) Only a citizen of the United States may serve as master, chief engineer, radio officer, or officer in charge of a deck watch or engineering watch on a documented vessel.

(b)(1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, on a documented vessel—

(A) each unlicensed seaman must be a citizen of the United States or an alien lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence; and

(B) not more than 25 percent of the total number of unlicensed seamen on the vessel may be aliens lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence.


(2) Paragraph (1) of this subsection does not apply to—

(A) a yacht;

(B) a fishing vessel fishing exclusively for highly migratory species (as that term is defined in section 3 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1802)); and

(C) a fishing vessel fishing outside of the exclusive economic zone.


(3) The Secretary may waive a citizenship requirement under this section, other than a requirement that applies to the master of a documented vessel, with respect to—

(A) an offshore supply vessel or other similarly engaged vessel of less than 1,600 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title that operates from a foreign port;

(B) a mobile offshore drilling unit or other vessel engaged in support of exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral energy resources operating beyond the water above the outer Continental Shelf (as that term is defined in section 2(a) of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1331(a)); and

(C) any other vessel if the Secretary determines, after an investigation, that qualified seamen who are citizens of the United States are not available.


(c) On each departure of a vessel (except a passenger vessel) for which a construction or operating differential subsidy has been granted, all of the seamen of the vessel must be citizens of the United States.

(d)(1) On each departure of a passenger vessel for which a construction or operating differential subsidy has been granted, at least 90 percent of the entire complement (including licensed individuals) must be citizens of the United States.

(2) An individual not required by this subsection to be a citizen of the United States may be engaged only if the individual has a declaration of intention to become a citizen of the United States or other evidence of admission to the United States for permanent residence. An alien may be employed only in the steward's department of the passenger vessel.

(e) If a documented vessel is deprived for any reason of the services of an individual (except the master and the radio officer) when on a foreign voyage and a vacancy consequently occurs, until the vessel's return to a port at which in the most expeditious manner a replacement who is a citizen of the United States can be obtained, an individual not a citizen of the United States may serve in—

(1) the vacancy; or

(2) a vacancy resulting from the promotion of another individual to fill the original vacancy.


(f) A person employing an individual in violation of this section or a regulation prescribed under this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $500 for each individual so employed.

(g) A deck or engineer officer employed on a vessel on which an operating differential subsidy is paid, or employed on a vessel (except a vessel of the Coast Guard or Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation) owned or operated by the Department of Transportation or by a corporation organized or controlled by the Department, if eligible, shall be a member of the Naval Reserve.

(h) The President may—

(1) suspend any part of this section during a proclaimed national emergency; and

(2) when the needs of commerce require, suspend as far and for a period the President considers desirable, subsection (a) of this section for crews of vessels of the United States documented for foreign trade.


(i)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (3) of this subsection, each unlicensed seaman on a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel that is engaged in the fisheries in the navigable waters of the United States or the exclusive economic zone must be—

(A) a citizen of the United States;

(B) an alien lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence;

(C) any other alien allowed to be employed under the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.); or

(D) an alien allowed to be employed under the immigration laws of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands if the vessel is permanently stationed at a port within the Commonwealth and the vessel is engaged in the fisheries within the exclusive economic zone surrounding the Commonwealth or another United States territory or possession.


(2) Not more than 25 percent of the unlicensed seamen on a vessel subject to paragraph (1) of this subsection may be aliens referred to in clause (C) of that paragraph.

(3) This subsection does not apply to a fishing vessel fishing exclusively for highly migratory species (as that term is defined in section 3 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1802)).

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 548; Pub. L. 100–239, §§5(a)(1), (2), (b)–(d)(1), Jan. 11, 1988, 101 Stat. 1780; Pub. L. 100–255, Mar. 4, 1988, 102 Stat. 23; Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(6), title VII, §711, Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993, 2997; Pub. L. 104–208, div. A, title I, §101(a) [title II, §211(b)], Sept. 30, 1996, 110 Stat. 3009, 3009–41; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §727, title XI, §1123, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3939, 3980.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8103 46:221

46:236

46:672(h)

46:672a

46:690

46:1132

Section 8103 sets forth the requirements for citizenship and Naval Reserve membership for the complement on a vessel documented under the laws of the United States.

Subsection (a) requires that the master, chief engineer, or officer in charge of a deck or engineering watch on a United States documented vessel be a United States citizen.

Subsection (b) requires that 75 percent of the seamen, excluding licensed individuals, on a United States documented vessel be United States citizens, except for a fishing or whaling vessel or yacht. The Secretary may reduce the percentage if the Secretary decides on investigation that United States seamen are not available. This investigation and percentage reduction authority is the sole responsibility of the Secretary of Transportation and accordingly the Secretary is to make these decisions expeditiously, promptly, and independently so as not to be dependent on any other agency to make this reduction. The Committee believes the Secretary is capable of this decision and need not delay or fail to make the decision because some other agency does not have the information or would require an extended period to acquire that information. The phrase “for any reason” is used merely to emphasize the complete discretion of the Secretary in making this decision. In addition, because this decision is based on an investigation, formal procedures of the Administrative Procedure Act do not apply.

Subsections (c) and (d) provide that a vessel, except a passenger vessel, on departure from the United States that has been granted a construction or operating differential subsidy have a higher percentage citizenship requirement. Subsection (c) requires all of the crew and employees of a cargo vessel be United States citizens. Subsection (d) requires at least 90 percent of the entire complement of a passenger vessel be United States citizens. The phrase “including all licensed individuals” emphasizes that all licensed individuals are required to be United States citizens as required by subsection (a) and that they compose part of the 90 percent requirement under this subsection. Further, under subsection (d), the balance of the complement must be individuals who have a declaration of intention to become a United States citizen or evidence of admission to the United States as a permanent resident and may only be employed in the steward's department of the passenger vessel.

Except for the master, subsection (e) permits a non-United States citizen to fill a vacancy that occurs for any reason on a United States documented vessel during a foreign voyage until the vessel returns to a United States port where a United States citizen replacement can be obtained. The phrase “for any reason” is used merely for emphasis.

Subsection (f) provides for the penalty for violation of this section.

Subsection (g) requires a deck or engineer officer on a vessel that has been granted an operating differential subsidy or is under the control by the Department of Transportation to be, if eligible, a member of the Naval Reserve. This section does not apply to a vessel of the Coast Guard or the Saint Lawrance Seaway Development Corporation.

Subsection (h) permits the President to suspend the requirements of this section during a proclaimed national emergency or the requirement of subsection (a) for United States vessels documented for foreign trade when the needs of commerce require.

References in Text

The Immigration and Nationality Act, referred to in subsec. (i)(1)(C), is act June 27, 1952, ch. 477, 66 Stat. 163, as amended, and is classified principally to chapter 12 (§1101 et seq.) of Title 8, Aliens and Nationality. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1101 of Title 8 and Tables.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b)(2)(B). Pub. L. 104–208 substituted “Magnuson-Stevens Fishery” for “Magnuson Fishery”.

Subsec. (b)(3)(A). Pub. L. 104–324, §727, inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,600 gross tons”.

Subsec. (i)(1)(D). Pub. L. 104–324, §1123, added subpar. (D).

Subsec. (i)(3). Pub. L. 104–208 substituted “Magnuson-Stevens Fishery” for “Magnuson Fishery”.

1990—Subsec. (i)(3)(C). Pub. L. 101–595, §§603(6) and 711, amended subpar. (C) identically, substituting “Nationality” for “Naturalization”.

1988—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 100–239, §5(a)(1), inserted “radio officer,” after “chief engineer,”.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 100–255 substituted “section,” for “subsection,” in par. (3).

Pub. L. 100–239, §5(a)(2), amended subsec. (b) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (b) read as follows: “On each departure of a documented vessel (except a fishing or whaling vessel or yacht) from a port of the United States, 75 percent of the seamen (excluding licensed individuals) must be citizens of the United States. If the Secretary decides, on investigation, that qualified citizen seamen are not available, the Secretary may reduce the percentage.”

Subsecs. (c), (d)(1). Pub. L. 100–239, §5(b), struck out “from the United States” after “On each departure”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 100–239, §5(c), inserted “and the radio officer” after “the master” and substituted “until the vessel's return to a port at which in the most expeditious manner” for “until the vessel's first return to a United States port at which”.

Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 100–239, §5(d)(1), added subsec. (i).

Effective Date of 1996 Amendment

Section 101(a) [title II, §211(b)] of div. A of Pub. L. 104–208 provided that the amendment made by that section is effective 15 days after Oct. 11, 1996.

Effective Date of 1988 Amendment

Section 5(a)(3) of Pub. L. 100–239 provided that: “Paragraph (2) of this subsection [amending this section] is effective 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act [Jan. 11, 1988].”

Section 5(d)(2) of Pub. L. 100–239 provided that: “This subsection [amending this section] is effective 360 days after the day of the enactment of this Act [Jan. 11, 1988].”

Application of Section to Fishing Vessels in California

Section 317 of Pub. L. 101–595, as amended by Pub. L. 104–324, title III, §301(d)(2)(B), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3916, provided that:

“(a) Definition.—For purposes of the application of sections 8103(a), 12102, 12110, 12111, and 12122(b) of title 46, United States Code, to a fishing vessel operating in waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States off the coast of the State of California, the term ‘citizen of the United States’ includes an alien lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence.

“(b) Termination.—This section shall terminate on October 1, 2000.”

§8104. Watches

(a) An owner, charterer, managing operator, master, individual in charge, or other person having authority may permit an officer to take charge of the deck watch on a vessel when leaving or immediately after leaving port only if the officer has been off duty for at least 6 hours within the 12 hours immediately before the time of leaving.

(b) On an oceangoing or coastwise vessel of not more than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title (except a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel), a licensed individual may not be required to work more than 9 of 24 hours when in port, including the date of arrival, or more than 12 of 24 hours at sea, except in an emergency when life or property are endangered.

(c) On a towing vessel (except a towing vessel operated only for fishing, fish processing, fish tender, or engaged in salvage operations) operating on the Great Lakes, harbors of the Great Lakes, and connecting or tributary waters between Gary, Indiana, Duluth, Minnesota, Niagara Falls, New York, and Ogdensburg, New York, a licensed individual or seaman in the deck or engine department may not be required to work more than 8 hours in one day or permitted to work more than 15 hours in any 24-hour period, or more than 36 hours in any 72-hour period, except in an emergency when life or property are endangered.

(d) On a merchant vessel of more than 100 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title (except a vessel only operating on rivers, harbors, lakes (except the Great Lakes), bays, sounds, bayous, and canals, a fishing, fish tender, or whaling vessel, a fish processing vessel of not more than 5,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title, yacht, or vessel engaged in salvage operations), the licensed individuals, sailors, coal passers, firemen, oilers, and water tenders shall be divided, when at sea, into at least 3 watches, and shall be kept on duty successively to perform ordinary work incident to the operation and management of the vessel. The requirement of this subsection applies to radio officers only when at least 3 radio officers are employed. A licensed individual or seaman in the deck or engine department may not be required to work more than 8 hours in one day.

(e) On a vessel designated by subsection (d) of this section—

(1) a seaman may not be—

(A) engaged to work alternately in the deck and engine departments; or

(B) required to work in the engine department if engaged for deck department duty or required to work in the deck department if engaged for engine department duty;


(2) a seaman may not be required to do unnecessary work on Sundays, New Year's Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, or Christmas Day, when the vessel is in a safe harbor, but this clause does not prevent dispatch of a vessel on a voyage; and

(3) when the vessel is in a safe harbor, 8 hours (including anchor watch) is a day's work.


(f) Subsections (d) and (e) of this section do not limit the authority of the master or other officer or the obedience of the seamen when, in the judgment of the master or other officer, any part of the crew is needed for—

(1) maneuvering, shifting the berth of, mooring, or unmooring, the vessel;

(2) performing work necessary for the safety of the vessel, or the vessel's passengers, crew, or cargo;

(3) saving life on board another vessel in jeopardy; or

(4) performing fire, lifeboat, or other drills in port or at sea.


(g) On a towing vessel, an offshore supply vessel, or a barge to which this section applies, that is engaged on a voyage of less than 600 miles, the licensed individuals and crewmembers (except the coal passers, firemen, oilers, and water tenders) may be divided, when at sea, into at least 2 watches.

(h) On a vessel to which section 8904 of this title applies, an individual licensed to operate a towing vessel may not work for more than 12 hours in a consecutive 24-hour period except in an emergency.

(i) A person violating subsection (a) or (b) of this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $10,000.

(j) The owner, charterer, or managing operator of a vessel on which a violation of subsection (c), (d), (e), or (h) of this section occurs is liable to the Government for a civil penalty of $10,000. The seaman is entitled to discharge from the vessel and receipt of wages earned.

(k) On a fish processing vessel subject to inspection under part B of this subtitle, the licensed individuals and deck crew shall be divided, when at sea, into at least 3 watches.

(l) Except as provided in subsection (k) of this section, on a fish processing vessel, the licensed individuals and deck crew shall be divided, when at sea, into at least 2 watches if the vessel—

(1) entered into service before January 1, 1988, and is more than 1,600 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title; or

(2) entered into service after December 31, 1987, and has more than 16 individuals on board primarily employed in the preparation of fish or fish products.


(m) This section does not apply to a fish processing vessel—

(1) entered into service before January 1, 1988, and not more than 1,600 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title; or

(2) entered into service after December 31, 1987, and having not more than 16 individuals on board primarily employed in the preparation of fish or fish products.


(n) On a tanker, a licensed individual or seaman may not be permitted to work more than 15 hours in any 24-hour period, or more than 36 hours in any 72-hour period, except in an emergency or a drill. In this subsection, “work” includes any administrative duties associated with the vessel whether performed on board the vessel or onshore.

(o)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, on a fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title engaged in the Aleutian trade, the licensed individuals and crewmembers shall be divided, when at sea, into at least 3 watches.

(2) On a fish tender vessel of not more than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title engaged in the Aleutian trade, the licensed individuals and crewmembers shall be divided, when at sea, into at least 2 watches, if the vessel—

(A) before September 8, 1990, operated in that trade; or

(B)(i) before September 8, 1990, was purchased to be used in that trade; and

(ii) before June 1, 1992, entered into service in that trade.


(p) The Secretary may prescribe the watchstanding and work hours requirements for an oil spill response vessel.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 549; Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §402(11), July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 448; Pub. L. 98–557, §33(c), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2876; Pub. L. 99–307, §1(12), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445; Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §§4114(b), 4302(f), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 517, 538; Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §602(e)(1), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2991; Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5212, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5077; Pub. L. 103–206, title III, §322(a), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2428; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §728, title XI, §§1104(c), 1114, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3939, 3967, 3971.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8104 46:235

46:405(b)

46:673

Section 8104 prescribes certain working hours and conditions under which working hours are set. The Committee intends that these sections be interpreted in a manner consistent with one another.

Subsection (a) permits an individual to take charge of the deck watch on leaving port and immediately thereafter only if the individual has been off duty for 6 of the 12 hours immediately prior to departure.

Subsection (b) prohibits a licensed individual from being required to work more than 9 of 24 hours in port or more than 12 of 24 hours at sea on an oceangoing or coastwise vessel of not more than 100 gross tons, except in an emergency.

Subsection (c) prescribes a maximum 8-hour day for licensed individuals and seamen on towing vessels operating on the Great Lakes and certain connecting or tributary waters.

Subsection (d) requires certain members of the complement of certain merchant vessels of more than 100 gross tons to be divided into at least 3 successive watches when at sea. This requirement applies to radio officers only when at least 3 radio officers are employed. Subsection (d) also prescribes a maximum 8-hour work day for licensed individuals and seamen on these vessels.

For the Great Lakes towing vessels and merchant vessels in subsections (c) and (d(, subsection (e) requires that seamen be hired only for work in either the deck or the engine department. When in a safe harbor, seamen may be required to do only necessary work on Sundays and certain holidays, unless the vessel is getting underway on a voyage. Further, when in a safe harbor, this subsection restates the maximum 8-hour work day which applies even for anchor watch.

Subsection (f) states that the limitations in subsections (d) and (e) do not apply if the master or other officer decides the crew is needed for certain routine, safety, or rescue activities.

Subsection (g) provides that for a towing vessel (except a Great Lakes towing vessel under subsection (c)), offshore supply vessel, or barge on a voyage of less than 600 miles, the licensed officers and certain crewmembers may be divided into not less than two watches when at sea.

Subsection (h) provides that the licensed operator for a towing vessel at least 26 feet long may not be required to work more than 12 of 24 hours, except in an emergency.

Subsections (i) and (j) prescribe penalties for violations of the provisions of this section and, in certain instances, entitles the seaman to discharge and payment of wages.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324, §728(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 104–324, §1114(a), struck out “or permitted” after “required” and inserted “or permitted to work more than 15 hours in any 24-hour period, or more than 36 hours in any 72-hour period” after “day”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 104–324, §728(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “100 gross tons” and after “5,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 104–324, §1114(b), substituted “subsection (d)” for “subsections (c) and (d)” in introductory provisions.

Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 104–324, §1114(c), struck out “(except a vessel to which subsection (c) of this section applies)” after “On a towing vessel”.

Subsec. (l)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §728(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,600 gross tons”.

Subsec. (m)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §728(4), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,600 gross tons”.

Subsec. (o)(1). Pub. L. 104–324, §728(5), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (o)(2). Pub. L. 104–324, §728(6), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “500 gross tons”.

Subsec. (p). Pub. L. 104–324, §1104(c), amended subsec. (p) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (p) read as follows: “On a vessel used only to respond to a discharge of oil or a hazardous substance, the licensed individuals and crewmembers may be divided into at least two watches when the vessel is engaged in an operation less than 12 hours in duration.”

1993—Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 103–206, §322(a)(1), struck out “a vessel used only to respond to a discharge of oil or a hazardous substance,” after “an offshore supply vessel,”.

Subsec. (p). Pub. L. 103–206, §322(a)(2), added subsec. (p).

1992—Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 102–587, §5212(1), inserted “a vessel used only to respond to a discharge of oil or a hazardous substance,” after “an offshore supply vessel,”.

Subsecs. (n), (o). Pub. L. 102–587, §5212(2), redesignated subsec. (n), relating to fish tender vessels of not more than 500 gross tons engaged in Aleutian trade, as (o).

1990—Subsecs. (i), (j). Pub. L. 101–380, §4302(f), substituted “$10,000” for “$100” in subsec. (i) and for “$500” in subsec. (j).

Subsec. (n). Pub. L. 101–595 added subsec. (n) relating to fish tender vessels of not more than 500 gross tons engaged in Aleutian trade.

Pub. L. 101–380, §4114(b), added subsec. (n) relating to tankers.

1986—Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 99–307 substituted “watches” for “watchers”.

1984—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(11)(A), substituted “100 gross tons (except a fishing, fish processing, or fish tender vessel)” for “100 gross tons”.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(11)(B), substituted “fishing, fish processing, fish tender,” for “fishing”.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(11)(C), substituted “a fishing, fish tender, or whaling vessel, a fish processing vessel of not more than 5,000 gross tons” for “a fishing or whaling vessel”.

Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 98–557 substituted “shall” for “may”.

Pub. L. 98–364, §402(11)(D), added subsec. (k).

Subsec. (l). Pub. L. 98–557 substituted “shall” for “may” in provisions preceding par. (1).

Pub. L. 98–364, §402(11)(D), added subsec. (l).

Subsec. (m). Pub. L. 98–364, §402(11)(D), added subsec. (m).

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 8702 of this title.

§8105. Fishing vessel exemption

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, neither the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978, nor any amendment to such convention, shall apply to a fishing vessel, including a fishing vessel used as a fish tender vessel.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1146(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3992.)

Prior Provisions

A prior section 8105, Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 550, authorized Secretary to prescribe regulations to carry out this part prior to repeal by Pub. L. 101–595, title VI, §603(7)(A), Nov. 16, 1990, 104 Stat. 2993.

CHAPTER 83—MASTERS AND OFFICERS

Sec.
8301.
Minimum number of licensed individuals.
8302.
Staff department.
8303.
Service under licenses issued without examination.
8304.
Implementing the Officers’ Competency Certificates Convention, 1936.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

For certain vessels of the United States, chapter 83 prescribes the minimum number of licensed individuals (including masters), establishes the staff department consisting of medical and clerical personnel, restricts service under certain licenses issued without examination, and implements the Officers’ Competency Certificates Convention of 1936.

§8301. Minimum number of licensed individuals

(a) Except as provided in chapter 89 of this title and except for a vessel operating only on rivers, harbors, lakes (except the Great Lakes), bays, sounds, bayous, and canals, a vessel subject to inspection under chapter 33 of this title shall engage a minimum of licensed individuals as follows:

(1) Each of those vessels propelled by machinery or carrying passengers shall have a licensed master.

(2) A vessel of at least 1,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title and propelled by machinery shall have 3 licensed mates, except—

(A) in the case of a vessel other than a mobile offshore drilling unit, if on a voyage of less than 400 miles from port of departure to port of final destination, the vessel shall have 2 licensed mates; and

(B) in the case of a mobile offshore drilling unit, the vessel shall have licensed individuals as provided by regulations prescribed by the Secretary under section 8101 of this title.


(3) A vessel of at least 200 gross tons but less than 1,000 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title and propelled by machinery shall have 2 licensed mates.

(4) A vessel of at least 100 gross tons but less than 200 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title and propelled by machinery shall have one licensed mate. However, if the vessel is on a voyage of more than 24 hours, it shall have 2 licensed mates.

(5) A freight vessel or a passenger vessel of at least 300 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title and propelled by machinery shall have a licensed engineer.


(b) An offshore supply vessel on a voyage of less than 600 miles shall have a licensed mate. However, if the vessel is on a voyage of at least 600 miles, the vessel shall have 2 licensed mates. An offshore supply vessel of more than 200 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title may not be operated without a licensed engineer.

(c) Subsection (a) of this section does not apply to a fishing or whaling vessel, a mobile offshore drilling unit when on location, or a yacht.

(d) The Secretary may—

(1) suspend any part of this chapter during a national emergency proclaimed by the President; and

(2) increase the number of licensed individuals on a vessel to which this chapter applies if, in the Secretary's judgment, the vessel is not sufficiently manned for safe operation.


(e) The Secretary may prescribe the minimum number of licensed individuals for an oil spill response vessel.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 550; Pub. L. 98–557, §29(c), (d), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2873, 2874; Pub. L. 99–640, §11(d), Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3550; Pub. L. 100–448, §7, Sept. 28, 1988, 102 Stat. 1842; Pub. L. 103–206, title III, §322(b), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2428; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §729, title XI, §1104(d), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3940, 3967.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8301 46:223

46:404–1(8)

Section 8301 prescribes the minimum number of licensed individuals on board certain vessels based on the vessel's size or propulsion, length of voyage by distance or time, or any combination of these factors.

Subsection (a) applies to certain merchant and passenger carrying vessels of the United States, each of which must have a licensed master regardless of the factors listed above. Subsection (b) applies to offshore supply vessels. Subsection (c) exempts fishing or whaling vessels or yachts from these requirements.

Subsection (d) permits the Secretary to suspend any part of this chapter during a declared national emergency or to increase the number of licensed individuals required by this chapter if required for safe operation of a vessel.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 104–324, §729(1), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (a)(3). Pub. L. 104–324, §729(2), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “1,000 gross tons”.

Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 104–324, §729(3), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “200 gross tons”.

Subsec. (a)(5). Pub. L. 104–324, §729(4), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “300 gross tons”.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104–324, §729(5), inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “200 gross tons”.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 104–324, §1104(d), amended subsec. (e) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (e) read as follows: “A vessel used only to respond to a discharge of oil or a hazardous substance shall have—

“(1) two licensed mates when the vessel is engaged in an operation over 12 hours in duration;

“(2) one licensed mate when the vessel is engaged in an operation less than 12 hours in duration; and

“(3) if the vessel is more than 200 gross tons, a licensed engineer when the vessel is operating.”

1993—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 103–206 added subsec. (e).

1988—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 100–448 amended par. (2) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (2) read as follows: “A vessel of at least 1,000 gross tons and propelled by machinery shall have 3 licensed mates. However, if the vessel is on a voyage of less than 400 miles from port of departure to port of final destination, it shall have 2 licensed mates.”

1986—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 99–640 inserted “, a mobile offshore drilling unit when on location,”.

1984—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 98–557, §29(c), in provisions preceding par. (1) inserted exception for the Great Lakes and substituted provisions relating to inspection under chapter 33 of this title for provisions relating to applicability of part B of this subtitle.

Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 98–557, §29(d), inserted “propelled by machinery or carrying passengers”.

§8302. Staff department

(a) This section applies to a vessel of the United States except—

(1) a fishing or whaling vessel or a yacht;

(2) a vessel operated only on bays, sounds, inland waters, and lakes (except the Great Lakes); and

(3) a vessel ferrying passengers and cars on the Great Lakes.


(b) The staff department on a vessel is a separate and independent department. It consists of individuals registered under section 7101 of this title, clerks, and individuals assigned to the senior registered medical doctor.

(c) The staff department is composed of a medical division and a purser's division. The officer in charge of each division is responsible only to the master. The senior registered medical doctor is in charge of the medical division. The senior registered purser is in charge of the purser's division.

(d) The officer in charge of the purser's division of the staff department on an oceangoing passenger vessel licensed to carry more than 100 passengers shall be a registered chief purser. When more than 3 persons are employed in the purser's division of that vessel, there also shall be at least one registered senior assistant purser and one registered junior assistant purser.

(e) A person may not employ an individual to serve in, and an individual may not serve in, a grade of staff officer on a vessel, when that staff officer is required by this section to be registered, if the individual does not have a certificate of registry as staff officer in that grade. A person (including an individual) violating this subsection is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $100. However, if a registered staff officer is not available at the time of sailing, the vessel may sail with an unregistered staff officer or without a staff officer.

(f) A staff officer may not be included in a vessel's certificate of inspection.

(g) A registered staff officer serving under this section who is a member of the Naval Reserve may wear on the officer's uniform special distinguishing insignia prescribed by the Secretary of the Navy.

(h) The uniform stripes, decoration, or other insignia worn by a staff officer shall be of gold braid or woven gold or silver material. A crewmember (except a staff officer) may not wear any uniform with a staff officer's identifying insignia.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 551; Pub. L. 99–36, §1(a)(4), May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 67.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8302(a)–(d) 46:242

46:248

8302(e), (f) 46:246(a)
8302(g) 46:245(a)
8302(h) 46:245(b)

Section 8302 sets forth the organization and manning requirements of the staff department of a vessel. The staff department has medical and clerical responsibilities.

Subsection (a) applies this section to every United States vessel except a yacht, a fishing, whaling, or certain types of inland waterway vessel, and a ferry carrying passengers or cars on the Great Lakes. A ferry is a vessel that primarily carries passengers, cars, or trains from shore to shore as a means to connect existing points on a transportation route so that the same type of transportation mode may continue to be used upon arrival at either point. Vessels carrying cars as cargo would not be included in this type of vessel.

Subsection (b) establishes the staff department as a separate one consisting of registered individuals (pursers, medical doctors, and professional nurses), clerks, and medical assistants. Subsection (c) divides the department into a medical division and a purser's division and designates the individual in charge of each division. Subsection (d) prescribes particular requirements of the purser's division based on size of the vessel or number of individuals employed in the division.

Subsection (e) prohibits the employment or service of an individual who is not registered or of the grade as required under this section and prescribes a penalty for violation of the subsection. This penalty applies to both the employer and the individual employed. If a registered staff officer is unavailable at the time of departure for a voyage, the vessel may proceed on its voyage with either an unregistered staff officer or without a staff officer.

Subsection (f) prohibits including a staff officer on a vessel's certificate of inspection.

Subsections (g) and (h) prescribe the type and restrictions for the uniform accouterments of a staff officer.

Amendments

1985—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 99–36 inserted a comma after “clerks”.

§8303. Service under licenses issued without examination

An individual issued a license without examination before October 29, 1941, to serve as master, mate, or engineer on a vessel not subject to inspection under part B of this subtitle, may not serve under authority of that license on a vessel that is subject to inspection under part B.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 552.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8303 46:224a

Section 8303 prohibits an individual licensed without an examination on an uninspected vessel prior to October 29, 1941, from serving as a master, mate, or engineer on an inspected vessel.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 14305 of this title.

§8304. Implementing the Officers’ Competency Certificates Convention, 1936

(a) In this section, “high seas” means waters seaward of the Boundary Line.

(b) The Officers’ Competency Certificates Convention, 1936 (International Labor Organization Draft Convention Numbered 53, on the minimum requirement of professional capacity for masters and officers on board merchant vessels), as ratified by the President on September 1, 1938, with understandings appended, and this section apply to a documented vessel operating on the high seas except—

(1) a public vessel;

(2) a wooden vessel of primitive build, such as a dhow or junk;

(3) a barge; and

(4) a vessel of less than 200 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title.


(c) A person may not engage or employ an individual to serve as, and an individual may not serve as, a master, mate, or engineer on a vessel to which this section applies, if the individual does not have a license issued under section 7101 of this title authorizing service in the capacity in which the individual is to be engaged or employed.

(d) A person (including an individual) violating this section is liable to the United States Government for a civil penalty of $100.

(e) A license issued to an individual to whom this section applies is a certificate of competency.

(f) A designated official may detain a vessel to which this section applies (by written order served on the owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of the vessel) when there is reason to believe that the vessel is about to proceed from a port of the United States to the high seas in violation of this section or a provision of the convention described in subsection (b) of this section. The vessel may be detained until the vessel complies with this section. Clearance may not be granted to a vessel ordered detained under this section.

(g) A foreign vessel to which the convention described in subsection (b) of this section applies, on the navigable waters of the United States, is subject to detention under subsection (f) of this section, and to an examination that may be necessary to decide if there is compliance with the convention.

(h) The owner, charterer, managing operator, agent, master, or individual in charge of a vessel detained under subsection (f) or (g) of this section may appeal the order within 5 days as provided by regulation.

(i) An officer or employee of the Customs Service may be designated to enforce this section.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 552; Pub. L. 104–324, title VII, §730, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3940.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8304 46:224a

46:241

Section 8304 implements the Officers’ Competency Certificates Convention, 1936, as ratified by the President on September 1, 1938, with understandings appended.

Subsection (a) defines “high seas” for this section. Subsection (b) implements the Convention, applies the Convention to United States vessels on the high seas, and exempts certain vessels.

Subsection (c) prohibits the employment or service of an individual as a master, mate, or engineer on a vessel under this section unless the individual has a license issued under section 7101 for the particular capacity in which the individual is employed.

Subsection (d) prescribes a civil penalty for violating this section.

Subsection (e) states that the license referred to in subsection (c) is a certificate of competency for purposes of the Convention.

Subsection (f) provides for the detention of a vessel in violation of this section or the Convention.

Subsection (g) applies the detention provision to a foreign vessel on the navigable waters of the United States and subjects it to an examination for compliance with the Convention.

Subsection (h) provides for an appeal of the detention order.

Subsection (i) permits the designation of a Customs Service officer or employee to enforce this section.

References in Text

The Officers’ Competency Certificates Convention, 1936, referred to in subsec. (b), is set out in 54 Stat. Pt. 2, p. 1683.

Amendments

1996—Subsec. (b)(4). Pub. L. 104–324 inserted “as measured under section 14502 of this title, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title” after “200 gross tons”.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 14305 of this title.

CHAPTER 85—PILOTS

Sec.
8501.
State regulation of pilots.
8502.
Federal pilots required.
8503.
Federal pilots authorized.

        

Historical and Revision Notes

Chapter 85 provides for State pilotage to be regulated by the States and only in conformity with the laws of the States. It clearly spells out the preeminence of the State's role in regulating pilots for vessels operating on the bays, rivers, harbors, and ports of the United States. However, those vessels that are required to have a Federally licensed pilot, those that operate on waters outside the territorial sea of the United States, and those that operate on waters of the Great Lakes are not subject to State pilotage laws or requirements. In essence this chapter, with minor changes, confirms the State and Federal relationship with respect to pilotage that has evolved since the founding of the Nation.

This chapter permits the continuation of Federal pilotage requirements for vessels that are not required to obtain compulsory State pilotage. It confirms the practice of allowing anyone with a Federal pilotage endorsement for the waters in which the vessel is operating to be in control of a vessel when engaged in the coastwide trade. It also confirms the practice of using Federal pilots that are often organized into groups or working organizations who offer their expertise and services to vessels that are not required to obtain compulsory State pilotage.

Amendments

1984—Pub. L. 98–557, §29(f)(3)(B), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2874, added item 8503.

§8501. State regulation of pilots

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this subtitle, pilots in the bays, rivers, harbors, and ports of the United States shall be regulated only in conformity with the laws of the States.

(b) The master of a vessel entering or leaving a port on waters that are a boundary between 2 States, and that is required to have a pilot under this section, may employ a pilot licensed or authorized by the laws of either of the 2 States.

(c) A State may not adopt a regulation or provision that discriminates in the rate of pilotage or half-pilotage between vessels sailing between the ports of one State and vessels sailing between the ports of different States, or against vessels because of their means of propulsion, or against public vessels of the United States.

(d) A State may not adopt a regulation or provision that requires a coastwise vessel to take a pilot licensed or authorized by the laws of a State if the vessel—

(1) is propelled by machinery and subject to inspection under part B of this subtitle; or

(2) is subject to inspection under chapter 37 of this title.


(e) Any regulation or provision violating this section is void.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 553; Pub. L. 98–557, §29(e), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2874.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource section (U.S. Code)
8501(a) 46:211
8501(b) 46:212
8501(c), (e) 46:213
8501(d) 46:215

Section 8501 establishes the general proposition that the States regulate pilots in the bays, rivers, harbors, and ports of the United States, unless otherwise specifically provided by law.

Subsection (a) states this general proposition and uses the word “only” for emphasis on this point. Further, except as specifically provided in law, the Committee intends that this chapter not be construed to annul or affect any regulation established by the laws of a State requiring a vessel entering or leaving a port in that State to employ a pilot licensed or authorized by the laws of that State. In at least two places in current law, this general proposition is stated in both a positive and negative manner. The Committee intends to consolidate those separate statements into one provision to avoid ambiguity and redundancy.

Subsections (b) and (c) contain provisions regarding pilotage in waters between two States.

Subsection (d) prohibits a State from requiring a State licensed pilot on certain coastwise vessels.

Subsection (e) voids any regulation or provision violating this section.

Amendments

1984—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 98–557 substituted “subtitle” for “part”.

§8502. Federal pilots required

(a) Except as provided in subsections (g) and (i) of this section, a coastwise seagoing vessel shall be under the direction and control of a pilot licensed under section 7101 of this title if the vessel is—

(1) not sailing on register;

(2) underway;

(3) not beyond 3 nautical miles from the baselines from