[USC07] 46 USC Subtitle II: Vessels and Seamen
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46 USC Subtitle II: Vessels and Seamen
From Title 46—SHIPPING

Subtitle II—Vessels and Seamen

Part A—General Provisions

Chapter
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.
Repealed.]
41.
Uninspected Vessels Generally
4101
43.
Recreational Vessels
4301
45.
Uninspected Commercial Fishing Industry Vessels
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
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
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

2006Pub. L. 109–304, §15(1), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702, in each chapter item, capitalized first letter of each word containing 4 or more letters, struck out item for chapter 39 "Carriage of animals", and substituted "Uninspected Commercial Fishing Industry Vessels" for "Fish processing vessels" in item 45.

2000Pub. L. 106–398, §1 [[div. A], title X, §1087(g)(6)], Oct. 30, 2000, 114 Stat. 1654, 1654A-294, substituted "mariner benefits" for "Mariner Benefits" in item 112.

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

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

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

1988Pub. 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.

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

1985Pub. 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.

1984Pub. 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.

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.

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.
Repealed.]
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.
2116.
Marine safety strategy, goals, and performance assessments.
2117.
Termination for unsafe operation.
2118.
Establishment of equipment standards.

        

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

2010Pub. L. 111–281, title V, §522(b), title VI, §608(b), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2957, 2968, added items 2116 to 2118.

2008Pub. L. 110–181, div. C, title XXXV, §3529(a)(1), Jan. 28, 2008, 122 Stat. 603, struck out item 2108 "Refund of penalties".

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

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

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

§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) with the exception of emergency locator beacons for recreational vessels operating beyond 3 nautical miles from the baselines from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured or beyond 3 nautical miles from the coastline of the Great Lakes, does not include radio equipment.


[(2) to (3a) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(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) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(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 Prevention 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), (10a) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(10b) "ferry" means a vessel that is used on a regular schedule—

(A) to provide transportation only between places that are not more than 300 miles apart; and

(B) to transport only—

(i) passengers; or

(ii) vehicles, or railroad cars, that are being used, or have been used, in transporting passengers or goods.


(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) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(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 558 of title 40.

(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) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(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 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 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;

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

(D) that is a ferry carrying a passenger.


(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.

(26a) "riding gang member" means an individual who—

(A) has not been issued a merchant mariner document under chapter 73;

(B) does not perform—

(i) watchstanding, automated engine room duty watch, or personnel safety functions; or

(ii) cargo handling functions, including any activity relating to the loading or unloading of cargo, the operation of cargo-related equipment (whether or not integral to the vessel), and the handling of mooring lines on the dock when the vessel is made fast or let go;


(C) does not serve as part of the crew complement required under section 8101;

(D) is not a member of the steward's department; and

(E) is not a citizen or temporary or permanent resident of a country designated by the United States as a sponsor of terrorism or any other country that the Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of State and the heads of other appropriate United States agencies, determines to be a security threat to the United States.


(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" means the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating.

(35) "small passenger vessel" means a wing-in-ground craft, regardless of tonnage, carrying at least one passenger for hire, and 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;

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

(E) that is a ferry carrying more than 6 passengers.


[(36) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(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) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(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) to (46) Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.]

(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.


(48) "wing-in-ground craft" means a vessel that is capable of operating completely above the surface of the water on a dynamic air cushion created by aerodynamic lift due to the ground effect between the vessel and the water's surface.

(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; Pub. L. 107–217, §3(m)(1), Aug. 21, 2002, 116 Stat. 1302; Pub. L. 107–295, title IV, §419, Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2124; Pub. L. 109–241, title III, §§301, 312(b), July 11, 2006, 120 Stat. 526, 533; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §§617(a)(1)(A), 618, Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2972, 2975; Pub. L. 111–330, §1(9), Dec. 22, 2010, 124 Stat. 3570.)

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

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

Amendments

2010—Par. (1)(B). Pub. L. 111–281, §618, as amended by Pub. L. 111–330, inserted "with the exception of emergency locator beacons for recreational vessels operating beyond 3 nautical miles from the baselines from which the territorial sea of the United States is measured or beyond 3 nautical miles from the coastline of the Great Lakes," before "does not include".

Par. (19). Pub. L. 111–281, §617(a)(1)(A), struck out "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" after "means a motor vessel".

2006—Pars. (2) to (3a). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out pars. (2), (3), and (3a), which defined "barge", "Boundary Line", and "citizen of the United States", respectively. See sections 102, 103, and 104 of this title.

Par. (6). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out par. (6) which read as follows: " 'consular officer' means an officer or employee of the United States Government designated under regulations to grant visas." See section 105 of this title.

Par. (8a). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(B), inserted "Prevention" after "Abuse".

Pars. (10), (10a). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out pars. (10) and (10a) which defined "documented vessel" and "Exclusive Economic Zone", respectively. See sections 106 and 107 of this title.

Par. (10b). Pub. L. 109–241, §301(a), added par. (10b).

Par. (12). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out par. (12) which read as follows: " 'foreign vessel' means a vessel of foreign registry or operated under the authority of a country except the United States." See section 110 of this title.

Par. (17b). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out par. (17b) which read as follows: " 'numbered vessel' means a vessel for which a number has been issued under chapter 123 of this title." See section 111 of this title.

Par. (18). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(C), struck out "those" after "including".

Par. (22)(D). Pub. L. 109–241, §301(b), added subpar. (D).

Par. (26a). Pub. L. 109–241, §312(b), added par. (26a).

Par. (34). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(D), struck out ", except in part H," before "means" and substituted "Secretary of" for "head of".

Par. (35)(E). Pub. L. 109–241, §301(c), added subpar. (E).

Par. (36). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out par. (36) which read as follows: " '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." See section 112 of this title.

Par. (41). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out par. (41) which read as follows: " 'undocumented' means not having and not required to have a document issued under chapter 121 of this title." See section 113 of this title.

Pars. (44) to (46). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(2)(A), struck out pars. (44) to (46), which defined "United States", "vessel", and "vessel of the United States", respectively. See sections 114, 115, and 116 of this title.

2002—Par. (17). Pub. L. 107–217 substituted "section 558 of title 40" for "section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986".

Par. (35). Pub. L. 107–295, §419(a), inserted "a wing-in-ground craft, regardless of tonnage, carrying at least one passenger for hire, and" after " 'small passenger vessel' means" in introductory provisions.

Par. (48). Pub. L. 107–295, §419(b), added par. (48).

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 2010 Amendment

Pub. L. 111–330, §1, Dec. 22, 2010, 124 Stat. 3569, provided that the amendment made by section 1(9) is effective with the enactment of Pub. L. 111–281.

Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5208(c), (d), Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5076, 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 31301 of this title.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

Fishing and Fish Tender Vessels

Pub. L. 103–206, title III, §321, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2427, 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 set out under section 101 of this title]."

Applicability Date for Revised Regulations

Pub. L. 103–206, title V, §513, Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2443, 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; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §617(a)(1)(B), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2972, 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 of less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502, or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of such title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of such title.

"(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 set out under section 101 of this title].

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

§2102. Limited definitions

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; Pub. L. 109–304, §§15(3), 16(a), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702, 1705.)

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

2006Pub. L. 109–304 redesignated subsec. (b) as entire section, substituted "west" for "West" and "east" for "East", and struck out subsec. (a) which defined "eligible State", "State", "United States", and "State recreational boating safety program" in chapters 37, 43, 51, and 123 of this title and part I of this subtitle.

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

1986Pub. 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.

§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

1986Pub. 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.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

For transfer of functions, personnel, assets, and liabilities of the United States Customs Service of the Department of the Treasury, including functions of the Secretary of the Treasury relating thereto, to the Secretary of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 203(1), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6. For establishment of U.S. Customs and Border Protection in the Department of Homeland Security, treated as if included in Pub. L. 107–296 as of Nov. 25, 2002, see section 211 of Title 6, as amended generally by Pub. L. 114–125, and section 802(b) of Pub. L. 114–125, set out as a note under section 211 of Title 6.

§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 the district court of the United States for any district in which the vessel is found.

(Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 506; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(4), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.)

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.

Amendments

2006Pub. L. 109–304 substituted "the district court of the United States for any district" for "a district court of the United States".

§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 subtitle VII or a regulation prescribed under this subtitle or subtitle VII 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 or subtitle VII 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; Pub. L. 109–241, title III, §306(b), July 11, 2006, 120 Stat. 528.)

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.

Amendments

2006Pub. L. 109–241 substituted "this subtitle or subtitle VII" for "this subtitle" in two places in subsec. (a) and in one place in subsec. (b).

[§2108. Repealed. Pub. L. 109–304, §15(5), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702]

Section, Pub. L. 98–89, Aug. 26, 1983, 97 Stat. 507, related to refund of penalties unlawfully, improperly, or excessively imposed. See section 504 of this title.

§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 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; Pub. L. 109–241, title IX, §902(e)(1), July 11, 2006, 120 Stat. 567; Pub. L. 111–281, title IX, §903(a)(5)(A), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 3010.)

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

2010Pub. L. 111–281 amended directory language of Pub. L. 109–241, §902(e)(1). See 2006 Amendment note below.

2006Pub. L. 109–241, §902(e)(1), as amended by Pub. L. 111–281, struck out "a Coast Guard or" after "(except".

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

Effective Date of 2010 Amendment

Pub. L. 111–281, title IX, §903(a), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 3010, provided that the amendment by section 903(a)(5)(A) is effective with enactment of Pub. L. 109–241.

§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 subtitle 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) In addition to the collection of fees and charges established under subsection (a), in providing a service or thing of value under this subtitle the Secretary may accept in-kind transportation, travel, and subsistence.

(2) The value of in-kind transportation, travel, and subsistence accepted under this paragraph may not exceed applicable per diem rates set forth in regulations prescribed under section 464 of title 37.

(c) In addition to the collection of fees and charges established under subsection (a), 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 Homeland Security shall deny the clearance required by section 60105 of this title 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 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, 2006.

(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; Pub. L. 107–295, title III, §344, Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2106; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(6), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702; Pub. L. 113–281, title III, §311(a), Dec. 18, 2014, 128 Stat. 3047.)

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

2014—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 113–281, §311(a)(1), amended subsec. (b) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (b) related to fees and charges in fiscal years 1993 and 1994.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 113–281, §311(a)(2), substituted "subsection (a)," for "subsections (a) and (b),".

2006—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(6)(A), substituted "part B of this subtitle" for "part B of this title".

Subsec. (b)(2)(A)(iii). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(6)(B), substituted "; and" for period at end.

Subsec. (b)(5). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(6)(C), substituted "The fee" for "The fees".

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(6)(D), substituted "Secretary of Homeland Security shall deny the clearance required by section 60105 of this title" for "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)".

Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(6)(E), substituted "State" for "state".

2002—Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 107–295 substituted "2006" for "2001".

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).

1990Pub. 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.

1988Pub. 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".

1986Pub. 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

Pub. L. 102–582, title V, §501(b), Nov. 2, 1992, 106 Stat. 4910, 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 31301 of this title.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

Acceptance of Evidence of Payment of Coast Guard Fees

Pub. L. 102–587, title V, §5214, Nov. 4, 1992, 106 Stat. 5077, 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."

§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.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§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.

§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".

1993Pub. 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."

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§2114. Protection of seamen against discrimination

(a)(1) A person may not discharge or in any manner discriminate against a seaman because—

(A) the seaman in good faith has reported or is about to report to the Coast Guard or other appropriate Federal agency or department that the seaman believes that a violation of a maritime safety law or regulation prescribed under that law or regulation has occurred;

(B) the seaman has refused to perform duties ordered by the seaman's employer because the seaman has a reasonable apprehension or expectation that performing such duties would result in serious injury to the seaman, other seamen, or the public;

(C) the seaman testified in a proceeding brought to enforce a maritime safety law or regulation prescribed under that law;

(D) the seaman notified, or attempted to notify, the vessel owner or the Secretary of a work-related personal injury or work-related illness of a seaman;

(E) the seaman cooperated with a safety investigation by the Secretary or the National Transportation Safety Board;

(F) the seaman furnished information to the Secretary, the National Transportation Safety Board, or any other public official as to the facts relating to any marine casualty resulting in injury or death to an individual or damage to property occurring in connection with vessel transportation; or

(G) the seaman accurately reported hours of duty under this part.


(2) The circumstances causing a seaman's apprehension of serious injury under paragraph (1)(B) must be of such a nature that a reasonable person, under similar circumstances, would conclude that there is a real danger of an injury or serious impairment of health resulting from the performance of duties as ordered by the seaman's employer.

(3) To qualify for protection against the seaman's employer under paragraph (1)(B), the employee must have sought from the employer, and been unable to obtain, correction of the unsafe condition.

(b) A seaman alleging discharge or discrimination in violation of subsection (a) of this section, or another person at the seaman's request, may file a complaint with respect to such allegation in the same manner as a complaint may be filed under subsection (b) of section 31105 of title 49. Such complaint shall be subject to the procedures, requirements, and rights described in that section, including with respect to the right to file an objection, the right of a person to file for a petition for review under subsection (c) of that section, and the requirement to bring a civil action under subsection (d) of that section.

(Added Pub. L. 98–557, §13(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2863; amended Pub. L. 107–295, title IV, §428, Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2127; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §611(a), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2969.)

Amendments

2010—Subsec. (a)(1)(C) to (G). Pub. L. 111–281, §611(a)(1)–(3), added subpars. (C) to (G).

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 111–281, §611(a)(4), amended subsec. (b) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (b) read as follows: "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;

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

"(3) an award of costs and reasonable attorney's fees to a prevailing plaintiff not exceeding $1,000; and

"(4) an award of costs and reasonable attorney's fees to a prevailing employer not exceeding $1,000 if the court finds that a complaint filed under this section is frivolous or has been brought in bad faith."

2002—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 107–295, §428(a), amended subsec. (a) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (a) read as follows: "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."

Subsec. (b)(3), (4). Pub. L. 107–295, §428(b), added pars. (3) and (4).

Savings Provision

Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §611(b), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2970, provided that: "This section [amending this section] shall not affect the application of section 2114(b) of title 46, United States Code, as in effect before the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010], to an action filed under that section before that date."

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§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

1998Pub. L. 105–383 substituted "$5,000" for "$1,000".

§2116. Marine safety strategy, goals, and performance assessments

(a) Long-Term Strategy and Goals.—In conjunction with existing federally required strategic planning efforts, the Secretary shall develop a long-term strategy for improving vessel safety and the safety of individuals on vessels. The strategy shall include the issuance each year of an annual plan and schedule for achieving the following goals:

(1) Reducing the number and rates of marine casualties.

(2) Improving the consistency and effectiveness of vessel and operator enforcement and compliance programs.

(3) Identifying and targeting enforcement efforts at high-risk vessels and operators.

(4) Improving research efforts to enhance and promote vessel and operator safety and performance.


(b) Contents of Strategy and Annual Plans.—

(1) Measurable goals.—The strategy and annual plans shall include specific numeric or measurable goals designed to achieve the goals set forth in subsection (a). The purposes of the numeric or measurable goals are the following:

(A) To increase the number of safety examinations on all high-risk vessels.

(B) To eliminate the backlog of marine safety-related rulemakings.

(C) To improve the quality and effectiveness of marine safety information databases by ensuring that all Coast Guard personnel accurately and effectively report all safety, casualty, and injury information.

(D) To provide for a sufficient number of Coast Guard marine safety personnel, and provide adequate facilities and equipment to carry out the functions referred to in section 93(c) of title 14.


(2) Resource needs.—The strategy and annual plans shall include estimates of—

(A) the funds and staff resources needed to accomplish each activity included in the strategy and plans; and

(B) the staff skills and training needed for timely and effective accomplishment of each goal.


(c) Submission With the President's Budget.—Beginning with fiscal year 2011 and each fiscal year thereafter, the Secretary shall submit to Congress the strategy and annual plan not later than 60 days following the transmission of the President's budget submission under section 1105 of title 31.

(d) Achievement of Goals.—

(1) Progress assessment.—No less frequently than semiannually, the Coast Guard Commandant shall assess the progress of the Coast Guard toward achieving the goals set forth in subsection (b). The Commandant shall convey the Commandant's assessment to the employees of the marine safety workforce and shall identify any deficiencies that should be remedied before the next progress assessment.

(2) Report to congress.—The Secretary shall report annually to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate—

(A) on the performance of the marine safety program in achieving the goals of the marine safety strategy and annual plan under subsection (a) for the year covered by the report;

(B) on the program's mission performance in achieving numerical measurable goals established under subsection (b), including—

(i) the number of civilian and military Coast Guard personnel assigned to marine safety positions; and

(ii) an identification of marine safety positions that are understaffed to meet the workload required to accomplish each activity included in the strategy and plans under subsection (a); and


(C) recommendations on how to improve performance of the program.

(Added Pub. L. 111–281, title V, §522(a), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2956; amended Pub. L. 113–281, title II, §221(b)(1)(A), title III, §307(a), Dec. 18, 2014, 128 Stat. 3037, 3045.)

Amendments

2014—Subsec. (b)(1)(D). Pub. L. 113–281, §307(a), substituted "section 93(c) of title 14" for "section 93(c)".

Subsec. (d)(2)(B). Pub. L. 113–281, §221(b)(1)(A), amended subpar. (B) generally. Prior to amendment, subpar. (B) read as follows: "on the program's mission performance in achieving numerical measurable goals established under subsection (b); and".

§2117. Termination for unsafe operation

An individual authorized to enforce this title—

(1) may remove a certificate required by this title from a vessel that is operating in a condition that does not comply with the provisions of the certificate;

(2) may order the individual in charge of a vessel that is operating that does not have on board the certificate required by this title to return the vessel to a mooring and to remain there until the vessel is in compliance with this title; and

(3) may direct the individual in charge of a vessel to which this title 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.

(Added Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §608(a), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2967.)

§2118. Establishment of equipment standards

(a) In establishing standards for approved equipment required on vessels subject to part B of this subtitle, the Secretary shall establish standards that are—

(1) based on performance using the best available technology that is economically achievable; and

(2) operationally practical.


(b) Using the standards established under subsection (a), the Secretary may also certify lifesaving equipment that is not required to be carried on vessels subject to part B of this subtitle to ensure that such equipment is suitable for its intended purpose.

(c) At least once every 10 years the Secretary shall review and revise the standards established under subsection (a) to ensure that the standards meet the requirements of this section.

(Added Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §608(a), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2968; amended Pub. L. 114–120, title III, §306(a)(2), Feb. 8, 2016, 130 Stat. 54.)

Amendments

2016—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 114–120, §306(a)(2)(A), substituted "subtitle," for "title,".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 114–120, §306(a)(2)(B), substituted "subtitle" for "title".

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.
2307.
Limitation of liability for Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service pilots and non-Federal vessel traffic service operators.

        

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

2012Pub. L. 112–213, title III, §302(b), Dec. 20, 2012, 126 Stat. 1563, substituted "Limitation of liability for Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service pilots and non-Federal vessel traffic service operators" for "Limitation of liability for Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service pilots" in item 2307.

2002Pub. L. 107–295, title IV, §431(b), Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2128, added item 2307.

1998Pub. 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.

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

§2301. Application

Except as provided in sections 2304 and 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; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(7), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1702.)

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

2006Pub. L. 109–304 substituted "sections 2304 and" for "section".

1998Pub. 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".

1984Pub. 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 $5,000 in the case of a recreational vessel, or $25,000 in the case of any other vessel.

(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; Pub. L. 107–295, title III, §325, Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2105.)

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

2002—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 107–295 substituted "$5,000 in the case of a recreational vessel, or $25,000 in the case of any other vessel" for "$1,000"

1998Pub. 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)(1) 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.

(2) Paragraph (1) does not apply to a vessel of war or a vessel owned by the United States Government appropriated only to a public service.

(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; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(8), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703.)

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.

Amendments

2006—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 109–304 designated existing provisions as par. (1) and added par. (2).

§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 50113 of this title 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; amended Pub. L. 109–304, §15(9), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703.)

Amendments

2006—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 109–304 substituted "section 50113 of this title" for "section 212(A) of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936 (46 App. U.S.C. 1122a),".

Effective Date

Pub. L. 98–498, title II, §214, Oct. 19, 1984, 98 Stat. 2306, 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]."

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§2307. Limitation of liability for Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service pilots and non-Federal vessel traffic service operators

(a) Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service Pilots.—Any pilot, acting in the course and scope of his or her duties while at a United States Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service, who provides information, advice, or communication assistance while under the supervision of a Coast Guard officer, member, or employee shall not be liable for damages caused by or related to such assistance unless the acts or omissions of such pilot constitute gross negligence or willful misconduct.

(b) Non-Federal Vessel Traffic Service Operators.—An entity operating a non-Federal vessel traffic information service or advisory service pursuant to a duly executed written agreement with the Coast Guard, and any pilot acting on behalf of such entity, is not liable for damages caused by or related to information, advice, or communication assistance provided by such entity or pilot while so operating or acting unless the acts or omissions of such entity or pilot constitute gross negligence or willful misconduct.

(Added Pub. L. 107–295, title IV, §431(a), Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2128; amended Pub. L. 112–213, title III, §302(a), Dec. 20, 2012, 126 Stat. 1562.)

Amendments

2012Pub. L. 112–213 substituted "Limitation of liability for Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service pilots and non-Federal vessel traffic service operators" for "Limitation of liability for Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service pilots" in section catchline, designated existing provisions as subsec. (a), inserted subsec. (a) heading, and added subsec. (b).

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

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.

CHAPTER 31—GENERAL

Sec.
3101.
Authority to suspend inspection.
3102.
Immersion suits.
3103.
Use of reports, documents, and records.
3104.
Survival craft.

        

Amendments

2010Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §609(b), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2968, added item 3104.

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

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

1985Pub. 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.

1984Pub. 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

Pub. L. 98–89, §2(g)(1), 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

1988Pub. 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

Pub. L. 99–36, §2, May 15, 1985, 99 Stat. 68, 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

Pub. L. 98–623, title VII, §701(b), (c), Nov. 8, 1984, 98 Stat. 3413, 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.]

[For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.]

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.

§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.)

§3104. Survival craft

(a) Requirement To Equip.—The Secretary shall require that a passenger vessel be equipped with survival craft that ensures that no part of an individual is immersed in water, if—

(1) such vessel is built or undergoes a major conversion after January 1, 2016; and

(2) operates in cold waters as determined by the Secretary.


(b) Higher Standard of Safety.—The Secretary may revise part 117 or part 180 of title 46, Code of Federal Regulations, as in effect before January 1, 2016, if such revision provides a higher standard of safety than is provided by the regulations in effect on or before the date of the enactment of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2016.

(c) Innovative and Novel Designs.—The Secretary may, in lieu of the requirements set out in part 117 or part 180 of title 46, Code of Federal Regulations, as in effect on the date of the enactment of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2016, allow a passenger vessel to be equipped with a life-saving appliance or arrangement of an innovative or novel design that—

(1) ensures no part of an individual is immersed in water; and

(2) provides an equal or higher standard of safety than is provided by such requirements as in effect before such date of the enactment.


(d) Built Defined.—In this section, the term "built" has the meaning that term has under section 4503(e).

(Added Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §609(a), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2968; amended Pub. L. 112–213, title III, §303, Dec. 20, 2012, 126 Stat. 1563; Pub. L. 114–120, title III, §301(a), Feb. 8, 2016, 130 Stat. 50; Pub. L. 114–328, div. C, title XXXV, §3503(a), Dec. 23, 2016, 130 Stat. 2775.)

References in Text

The date of the enactment of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2016, referred to in subsecs. (b) and (c), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 114–120, which was approved Feb. 8, 2016.

Amendments

2016Pub. L. 114–120 amended section generally. Prior to amendment, section related to survival craft.

Subsecs. (b), (c). Pub. L. 114–328 substituted "Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2016" for "Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2015".

2012—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 112–213, §303(1), substituted "the date that is 30 months after the date on which the report described in subsection (c) is submitted" for "January 1, 2015" in introductory provisions.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 112–213, §303(2), added subsec. (c).

Effective Date of 2016 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 114–328 effective as if included in the enactment of Pub. L. 114–120, see section 3503(e) of Pub. L. 114–328, set out as a note under section 60 of Title 14, Coast Guard.

Review; Revision of Regulations

Pub. L. 114–120, title III, §301(b), Feb. 8, 2016, 130 Stat. 50, provided that:

"(1) Review.—Not later than December 31, 2016, the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a review of—

"(A) the number of casualties for individuals with disabilities, children, and the elderly as a result of immersion in water, reported to the Coast Guard over the preceding 30-year period, by vessel type and area of operation;

"(B) the risks to individuals with disabilities, children, and the elderly as a result of immersion in water, by passenger vessel type and area of operation;

"(C) the effect that carriage of survival craft that ensure that no part of an individual is immersed in water has on—

"(i) passenger vessel safety, including stability and safe navigation;

"(ii) improving the survivability of individuals, including individuals with disabilities, children, and the elderly; and

"(iii) the costs, the incremental cost difference to vessel operators, and the cost effectiveness of requiring the carriage of such survival craft to address the risks to individuals with disabilities, children, and the elderly;

"(D) the efficacy of alternative safety systems, devices, or measures in improving survivability of individuals with disabilities, children, and the elderly; and

"(E) the number of small businesses and nonprofit vessel operators that would be affected by requiring the carriage of such survival craft on passenger vessels to address the risks to individuals with disabilities, children, and the elderly.

"(2) Scope.—In conducting the review under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall include an examination of passenger vessel casualties that have occurred in the waters of other nations.

"(3) Updates.—The Secretary shall update the review required under paragraph (1) every 5 years.

"(4) Revision.—Based on the review conducted under paragraph (1), including updates thereto, the Secretary shall revise regulations concerning the carriage of survival craft under section 3104(c) of title 46, United States Code."

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

Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(c), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3930, 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) Foreign Voyages and Foreign Vessels.—This chapter applies to a vessel that—

(1)(A) is transporting more than 12 passengers described in section 2101(21)(A) of this title; or

(B) is of at least 500 gross tons as measured under section 14302 of this title and is a tanker, freight vessel, bulk freight vessel, high speed freight vessel, or self-propelled mobile offshore drilling unit; and

(2)(A) is engaged on a foreign voyage; or

(B) is a foreign vessel departing from a place under the jurisdiction of the United States on a voyage, any part of which is on the high seas.


(b) Other Passenger Vessels.—This chapter applies to a vessel that is—

(1) a passenger vessel or small passenger vessel; and

(2) is transporting more passengers than a number prescribed by the Secretary based on the number of individuals on the vessel that could be killed or injured in a marine casualty.


(c) 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.

(d) Exception.—Except as provided in subsection (c) 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 that is not described in subsection (b) of this section; or

(5) a public vessel.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3928; amended Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §405(a), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1043; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §610(a), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2969.)

Amendments

2010—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 111–281, §610(a)(1), substituted "Foreign Voyages and Foreign Vessels.—" for "Mandatory Application.—" in heading.

Subsecs. (b) to (d). Pub. L. 111–281, §610(a)(2)–(4), added subsec. (b), redesignated former subsecs. (b) and (c) as (c) and (d), respectively, and, in introductory provisions of subsec. (d), substituted "subsection (c)" for "subsection (b)".

Subsec. (d)(4). Pub. L. 111–281, §610(a)(5), inserted "that is not described in subsection (b) of this section" after "connecting waters".

2004—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 108–293 reenacted heading without change and amended text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: "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."

§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 to which this chapter applies under section 3202(a) of this title.

(c) In prescribing regulations for passenger vessels and small passenger vessels, the Secretary shall consider—

(1) the characteristics, methods of operation, and nature of the service of these vessels; and

(2) with respect to vessels that are ferries, the sizes of the ferry systems within which the vessels operate.

(Added Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §602(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3928; amended Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §405(b), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1043; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §610(b), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2969.)

Amendments

2010—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 111–281 added subsec. (c).

2004—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 108–293 substituted "vessels to which this chapter applies under section 3202(a) of this title" for "vessels engaged on a foreign voyage".

§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.)

§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 Homeland Security shall withhold or revoke the clearance required by section 60105 of this title 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; amended Pub. L. 109–304, §15(10), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703; Pub. L. 110–181, div. C, title XXXV, §3529(b)(1)(A), Jan. 28, 2008, 122 Stat. 603.)

Amendments

2008—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 110–181 amended Pub. L. 109–304, §15(10). See 2006 Amendment note below.

2006—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(10), as amended by Pub. L. 110–181, substituted "Secretary of Homeland Security shall withhold or revoke the clearance required by section 60105 of this title" for "Secretary of the Treasury shall withhold or revoke the clearance required by section 4197 of the Revised Statutes (46 U.S.C. App. 91)".

Effective Date of 2008 Amendment

Pub. L. 110–181, div. C, title XXXV, §3529(b)(2), Jan. 28, 2008, 122 Stat. 603, provided that: "The amendments made by paragraph (1) [amending this section and section 31325 of this title] shall be effective as if included in the enactment of Public Law 109–304."

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

1996Pub. 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.

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

§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.

(15) towing 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; Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §415(a), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1047.)

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

2004—Par. (15). Pub. L. 108–293 added par. (15).

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

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.

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

Pub. L. 104–324, title XI, §1122, Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3979, 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."

[For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.]

§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, 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, the following fish tender vessels are exempt from section 3301(1), (6), (7), (11), and (12) of this title:

(A) 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.

(B) A vessel engaged in the Aleutian trade that is not more than 2,500 gross tons as measured under section 14302 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 less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or is less than 2,500 gross tons as measured under section 14302 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 less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or is less than 2,500 gross tons as measured under section 14302 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 chapter 515 of this title.


(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.

(D) The SS Red Oak Victory (United States official number 249410), owned by the Richmond Museum Association, located in Richmond, California.

(E) The SS American Victory (United States official number 248005), owned by Victory Ship, Inc., of Tampa, Florida.

(F) The LST–325, owned by USS LST Ship Memorial, Incorporated, located in Mobile, Alabama.


(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; Pub. L. 107–295, title II, §208, Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2098; Pub. L. 109–241, title III, §311, July 11, 2006, 120 Stat. 530; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(11), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703.)

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

2006—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(11)(A), inserted comma after "fishing vessel".

Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 109–241, §311(a), amended par. (2) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (2) read as follows: "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."

Subsec. (c)(3)(B), (4)(A). Pub. L. 109–241, §311(b), substituted "or less than 500 gross tons as measured under section 14502 of this title, or is less than 2,500 gross tons as measured under section 14302 of this title" for "or an alternate tonnage measured under section 14302 of this title as prescribed by the Secretary under section 14104 of this title".

Subsec. (j)(2)(B). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(11)(B), substituted "chapter 515 of this title" for "section 1304 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936 (46 App. U.S.C. 1295c)".

Subsec. (l)(1)(C). Pub. L. 109–304, §15(11)(C), substituted "Inc." for "Inc..".

2002—Subsec. (l)(1)(D) to (F). Pub. L. 107–295 added subpars. (D) to (F).

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.

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.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

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

Pub. L. 98–364, title IV, §403, July 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 450, 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

Pub. L. 98–89, §2(i), 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."

§3303. Reciprocity for foreign vessels

Except as provided in chapter 37 and section 3505 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; Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §411(b), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1046.)

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

2004Pub. L. 108–293 inserted "and section 3505" after "chapter 37".

1996Pub. 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".

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.

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.

§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

1986Pub. 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).

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.

§3305. Scope and standards of inspection

(a)(1) The inspection process shall ensure that a vessel subject to inspection—

(A) is of a structure suitable for the service in which it is to be employed;

(B) is equipped with proper appliances for lifesaving, fire prevention, and firefighting;

(C) has suitable accommodations for the crew, sailing school instructors, and sailing school students, and for passengers on the vessel if authorized to carry passengers;

(D) has an adequate supply of potable water for drinking and washing by passengers and crew;

(E) is in a condition to be operated with safety to life and property; and

(F) complies with applicable marine safety laws and regulations.


(2) In determining the adequacy of the supply of potable water under paragraph (1)(D), the Secretary shall consider—

(A) the size and type of vessel;

(B) the number of passengers or crew on board;

(C) the duration and routing of voyages; and

(D) guidelines for potable water recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Public Health Service.


(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 558 of title 40 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; Pub. L. 107–217, §3(m)(2), Aug. 21, 2002, 116 Stat. 1302; Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §416, Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1047; Pub. L. 109–241, title IX, §901(f), July 11, 2006, 120 Stat. 564.)

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.

Amendments

2006—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 109–241 realigned margins.

2004—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 108–293, §416(b), designated existing provisions as par. (1), redesignated former pars. (1) to (6) as subpars. (A) to (F), respectively, of par. (1), and added par. (2).

Subsec. (a)(4) to (6). Pub. L. 108–293, §416(a), added par. (4) and redesignated former pars. (4) and (5) as (5) and (6), respectively.

2002—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 107–217 substituted "section 558 of title 40" for "section 13 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1986".

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.

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.

§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 51102 of this title), 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.

(j) The Secretary may establish by regulation a safety management system appropriate for the characteristics, methods of operation, and nature of service of towing vessels.

(k)(1) Each vessel of the United States that is constructed under a contract entered into after the date of enactment of the Maritime Safety Act of 2010, or that is delivered after January 1, 2011, with an aggregate capacity of 600 cubic meters or more of oil fuel, shall comply with the requirements of Regulation 12A under Annex I to the Protocol of 1978 relating to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, entitled "Oil Fuel Tank Protection".

(2) The Secretary may prescribe regulations to apply the requirements described in Regulation 12A to vessels described in paragraph (1) that are not otherwise subject to that convention. Any such regulation shall be considered to be an interpretive rule for the purposes of section 553 of title 5.

(3) In this subsection the term "oil fuel" means any oil used as fuel in connection with the propulsion and auxiliary machinery of the vessel in which such oil is carried.

(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; Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §415(b), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1047; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(12), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §612, Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2970.)

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.

References in Text

The date of enactment of the Maritime Safety Act of 2010, referred to in subsec. (k)(1), is the date of enactment of title VI of Pub. L. 111–281, which was approved Oct. 15, 2010.

Amendments

2010—Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 111–281 added subsec. (k).

2006—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 109–304 substituted "section 51102 of this title" for "section 1302(3) of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936 (46 App. U.S.C. 1295a(3))".

2004—Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 108–293 added subsec. (j).

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).

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.

Regulations

Pub. L. 103–206, title V, §512(b), (c), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2442, 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."

Towing Vessels

Pub. L. 111–281, title VII, §701(c), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2980, provided that: "No later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010], the Secretary shall issue a notice of proposed rulemaking regarding inspection requirements for towing vessels required under section 3306(j) of title 46, United States Code. The Secretary shall issue a final rule pursuant to that rulemaking no later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act."

["Secretary" as used in section 701(c) of Pub. L. 111–281, set out above, probably means the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating, see section 701(a)(1) of Pub. L. 111–281, set out as a note under section 1321 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.]

Foreign Approvals

Pub. L. 104–324, title VI, §604(b), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3931, 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.

§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".

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.

§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

1996Pub. L. 104–324 inserted "or have examined" after "examine" in introductory provisions.

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.

§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.


(d) A certificate of inspection issued under this section shall be signed by the senior Coast Guard member or civilian employee who inspected the vessel, in addition to the officer in charge of marine 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; Pub. L. 111–281, title V, §522(c), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2957.)

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

2010—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 111–281 added subsec. (d).

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.

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.

§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.

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.

§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

1984Pub. 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).

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.

§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.

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.

§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.

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.

§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.

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.

§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.

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.

§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;

(B) if the foreign classification society has offices and maintains records in the United States; and

(C) if the Secretary of State determines that the foreign classification society does not provide comparable services in or for a state sponsor of terrorism.


(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.


(c)(1) A classification society (including an employee or agent of that society) may not review, examine, survey, or certify the construction, repair, or alteration of a vessel in the United States unless the society has applied for approval under this subsection and the Secretary has reviewed and approved that society with respect to the conduct of that society under paragraph (2).

(2) The Secretary may approve a person for purposes of paragraph (1) only if the Secretary determines that—

(A) the vessels surveyed by the person while acting as a classification society have an adequate safety record; and

(B) the person has an adequate program to—

(i) develop and implement safety standards for vessels surveyed by the person;

(ii) make the safety records of the person available to the Secretary in an electronic format;

(iii) provide the safety records of a vessel surveyed by the person to any other classification society that requests those records for the purpose of conducting a survey of the vessel; and

(iv) request the safety records of a vessel the person will survey from any classification society that previously surveyed the vessel.


(d)(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 United States offshore facility, the authority to—

(A) review and approve plans required for issuing a certificate of inspection, a certificate of compliance, or any other certification and related documents issued by the Coast Guard pursuant to regulations issued under section 30 of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1356); and

(B) conduct inspections and examinations.


(2) The Secretary may make a delegation under paragraph (1) to a foreign classification society only if—

(A) the foreign society has offices and maintains records in the United States;

(B)(i) the government of the foreign country in which the foreign society is headquartered delegates that authority to the American Bureau of Shipping; or

(ii) the Secretary has entered into an agreement with the government of the foreign country in which the foreign society is headquartered that—

(I) ensures the government of the foreign country will accept plan review, inspections, or examinations conducted by the American Bureau of Shipping and provide equivalent access to inspect, certify, and provide related services to offshore facilities located in that country or operating under the authority of that country; and

(II) is in full accord with principles of reciprocity in regards to any delegation contemplated by the Secretary under paragraph (1); and


(C) the Secretary of State determines that the foreign classification society does not provide comparable services in or for a state sponsor of terrorism.


(3) If an inspection or examination is conducted under authority delegated under this subsection, the person to which the authority was delegated—

(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 United States offshore facility 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.


(4) For purposes of this subsection—

(A) the term "offshore facility" means any installation, structure, or other device (including any vessel not documented under chapter 121 of this title or the laws of another country), fixed or floating, that dynamically holds position or is temporarily or permanently attached to the seabed or subsoil under the sea; and

(B) the term "United States offshore facility" means any offshore facility, fixed or floating, that dynamically holds position or is temporarily or permanently attached to the seabed or subsoil under the territorial sea of the United States or the outer Continental Shelf (as that term is defined in section 2 of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1331)), including any vessel, rig, platform, or other vehicle or structure subject to regulation under section 30 of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1356).


(e) The Secretary shall revoke a delegation made to a classification society under subsection (b) or (d) if the Secretary of State determines that the classification society provides comparable services in or for a state sponsor of terrorism.

(f)(1) Upon request of an owner or operator of an offshore supply vessel, the Secretary shall delegate the authorities set forth in paragraph (1) of subsection (b) with respect to such vessel to a classification society to which a delegation is authorized under that paragraph. A delegation by the Secretary under this subsection shall be used for any vessel inspection and examination function carried out by the Secretary, including the issuance of certificates of inspection and all other related documents.

(2) If the Secretary determines that a certificate of inspection or related document issued under authority delegated under paragraph (1) of this subsection with respect to a vessel has reduced the operational safety of that vessel, the Secretary may terminate the certificate or document, respectively.

(3) Not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of the Howard Coble Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2014, and for each year of the subsequent 2-year period, the Secretary shall provide to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report describing—

(A) the number of vessels for which a delegation was made under paragraph (1);

(B) any savings in personnel and operational costs incurred by the Coast Guard that resulted from the delegations; and

(C) based on measurable marine casualty and other data, any impacts of the delegations on the operational safety of vessels for which the delegations were made, and on the crew on those vessels.


(g) In this section, the term "state sponsor of terrorism" means any country the government of which the Secretary of State has determined has repeatedly provided support for acts of international terrorism pursuant to section 6(j) of the Export Administration Act of 1979 (as continued in effect under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act), section 620A of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, section 40 of the Arms Export Control Act, or any other provision of law.

(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; Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §413(a), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1046; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §622, Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2978; Pub. L. 112–213, title III, §304, Dec. 20, 2012, 126 Stat. 1563; Pub. L. 113–281, title III, §315, Dec. 18, 2014, 128 Stat. 3050.)

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.

References in Text

The date of the enactment of the Howard Coble Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2014, referred to in subsec. (f)(3), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 113–281, which was approved Dec. 18, 2014.

Section 6(j) of the Export Administration Act of 1979, referred to in subsec. (g), is classified to section 4605(j) of Title 50, War and National Defense.

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act, referred to in subsec. (g), is title II of Pub. L. 95–223, Dec. 28, 1977, 91 Stat. 1626, which is classified generally to chapter 35 (§1701 et seq.) of Title 50, War and National Defense. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 1701 of Title 50 and Tables.

Section 620A of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, referred to in subsec. (g), is classified to section 2371 of Title 22, Foreign Relations and Intercourse.

Section 40 of the Arms Export Control Act, referred to in subsec. (g), is classified to section 2780 of Title 22, Foreign Relations and Intercourse.

Amendments

2014—Subsecs. (f), (g). Pub. L. 113–281 added subsec. (f) and redesignated former subsec. (f) as (g).

2012—Subsec. (b)(2)(C). Pub. L. 112–213, §304(1), added subpar. (C).

Subsec. (d)(2)(C). Pub. L. 112–213, §304(2), added subpar. (C).

Subsecs. (e), (f). Pub. L. 112–213, §304(3), added subsecs. (e) and (f).

2010—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 111–281, §622(b), added par. (1) and struck out former par. (1) which read as follows: "A classification society (including an employee or agent of that society) may not review, examine, survey, or certify the construction, repair, or alteration of a vessel in the United States unless—

"(A) the society has applied for approval under this subsection and the Secretary has reviewed and approved that society with respect to the conduct of that society under paragraph (2); or

"(B) the society is a full member of the International Association of Classification Societies."

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 111–281, §622(a), added subsec. (d).

2004—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 108–293 added subsec. (c).

1996Pub. 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."

Effective Date of 2004 Amendment

Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §413(b), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1046, provided that: "Section 3316(c)(1) of title 46, United States Code, shall apply with respect to operation as a classification society on or after January 1, 2005."

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.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§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".

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.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§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 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; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(13), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703.)

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

2006—Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 109–304 struck out period after "felony".

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.

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.

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.
3507.
Passenger vessel security and safety requirements.
3508.
Crime scene preservation training for passenger vessel crewmembers.

        

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.

Amendments

2016Pub. L. 114–120, title III, §306(a)(3), Feb. 8, 2016, 130 Stat. 54, inserted a period at end of items 3507 and 3508.

2010Pub. L. 111–207, §3(b), July 27, 2010, 124 Stat. 2251, added items 3507 and 3508.

§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.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

For transfer of functions, personnel, assets, and liabilities of the United States Customs Service of the Department of the Treasury, including functions of the Secretary of the Treasury relating thereto, to the Secretary of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 203(1), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6. For establishment of U.S. Customs and Border Protection in the Department of Homeland Security, treated as if included in Pub. L. 107–296 as of Nov. 25, 2002, see section 211 of Title 6, as amended generally by Pub. L. 114–125, and section 802(b) of Pub. L. 114–125, set out as a note under section 211 of Title 6.

§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. 445; 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).

1986Pub. 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).

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

Notification to Prospective Passengers of Noncompliance With Fire-Retardant Standards

Pub. L. 99–307, §1(7)(B), May 19, 1986, 100 Stat. 445, 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.

§3505. Prevention of departure

Notwithstanding section 3303 of this title, a foreign vessel carrying a citizen of the United States as a passenger or embarking passengers from a United States port may not depart from a United States 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; Pub. L. 108–293, title IV, §411(a), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1045.)

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.

Amendments

2004Pub. L. 108–293 reenacted section catchline without change and amended text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: "Notwithstanding section 3303(a) 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."

1992Pub. 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.

§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.

§3507. Passenger vessel security and safety requirements

(a) Vessel Design, Equipment, Construction, and Retrofitting Requirements.—

(1) In general.—Each vessel to which this subsection applies shall comply with the following design and construction standards:

(A) The vessel shall be equipped with ship rails that are located not less than 42 inches above the cabin deck.

(B) Each passenger stateroom and crew cabin shall be equipped with entry doors that include peep holes or other means of visual identification.

(C) For any vessel the keel of which is laid after the date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010, each passenger stateroom and crew cabin shall be equipped with—

(i) security latches; and

(ii) time-sensitive key technology.


(D) The vessel shall integrate technology that can be used for capturing images of passengers or detecting passengers who have fallen overboard, to the extent that such technology is available.

(E) The vessel shall be equipped with a sufficient number of operable acoustic hailing or other such warning devices to provide communication capability around the entire vessel when operating in high risk areas (as defined by the United States Coast Guard).


(2) Fire safety codes.—In administering the requirements of paragraph (1)(C), the Secretary shall take into consideration fire safety and other applicable emergency requirements established by the U.S. Coast Guard and under international law, as appropriate.

(3) Effective date.—

(A) In general.—Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the requirements of paragraph (1) shall take effect 18 months after the date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010.

(B) Latch and key requirements.—The requirements of paragraph (1)(C) take effect on the date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010.


(b) Video Recording.—

(1) Requirement to maintain surveillance.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies shall maintain a video surveillance system to assist in documenting crimes on the vessel and in providing evidence for the prosecution of such crimes, as determined by the Secretary.

(2) Access to video records.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies shall provide to any law enforcement official performing official duties in the course and scope of an investigation, upon request, a copy of all records of video surveillance that the official believes may provide evidence of a crime reported to law enforcement officials.


(c) Safety Information.—

(1) Criminal Activity Prevention and Response Guide.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies (or the owner's designee) shall—

(A) have available for each passenger a guide (referred to in this subsection as the "security guide"), written in commonly understood English, which—

(i) provides a description of medical and security personnel designated on board to prevent and respond to criminal and medical situations with 24 hour contact instructions;

(ii) describes the jurisdictional authority applicable, and the law enforcement processes available, with respect to the reporting of homicide, suspicious death, a missing United States national, kidnapping, assault with serious bodily injury, any offense to which section 2241, 2242, 2243, or 2244(a) or (c) of title 18 applies, firing or tampering with the vessel, or theft of money or property in excess of $10,000, together with contact information for the appropriate law enforcement authorities for missing persons or reportable crimes which arise—

(I) in the territorial waters of the United States;

(II) on the high seas; or

(III) in any country to be visited on the voyage;


(B) provide a copy of the security guide to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for comment; and

(C) publicize the security guide on the website of the vessel owner.


(2) Embassy and consulate locations.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies shall provide in each passenger stateroom, and post in a location readily accessible to all crew and in other places specified by the Secretary, information regarding the locations of the United States embassy and each consulate of the United States for each country the vessel will visit during the course of the voyage.


(d) Sexual Assault.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies shall—

(1) maintain on the vessel adequate, in-date supplies of anti-retroviral medications and other medications designed to prevent sexually transmitted diseases after a sexual assault;

(2) maintain on the vessel equipment and materials for performing a medical examination in sexual assault cases to evaluate the patient for trauma, provide medical care, and preserve relevant medical evidence;

(3) make available on the vessel at all times medical staff who have undergone a credentialing process to verify that he or she—

(A) possesses a current physician's or registered nurse's license and—

(i) has at least 3 years of post-graduate or post-registration clinical practice in general and emergency medicine; or

(ii) holds board certification in emergency medicine, family practice medicine, or internal medicine;


(B) is able to provide assistance in the event of an alleged sexual assault, has received training in conducting forensic sexual assault examination, and is able to promptly perform such an examination upon request and provide proper medical treatment of a victim, including administration of anti-retroviral medications and other medications that may prevent the transmission of human immunodeficiency virus and other sexually transmitted diseases; and

(C) meets guidelines established by the American College of Emergency Physicians relating to the treatment and care of victims of sexual assault;


(4) prepare, provide to the patient, and maintain written documentation of the findings of such examination that is signed by the patient; and

(5) provide the patient free and immediate access to—

(A) contact information for local law enforcement, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Coast Guard, the nearest United States consulate or embassy, and the National Sexual Assault Hotline program or other third party victim advocacy hotline service; and

(B) a private telephone line and Internet-accessible computer terminal by which the individual may confidentially access law enforcement officials, an attorney, and the information and support services available through the National Sexual Assault Hotline program or other third party victim advocacy hotline service.


(e) Confidentiality of Sexual Assault Examination and Support Information.—The master or other individual in charge of a vessel to which this section applies shall—

(1) treat all information concerning an examination under subsection (d) confidential, so that no medical information may be released to the cruise line or other owner of the vessel or any legal representative thereof without the prior knowledge and approval in writing of the patient, or, if the patient is unable to provide written authorization, the patient's next-of-kin, except that nothing in this paragraph prohibits the release of—

(A) information, other than medical findings, necessary for the owner or master of the vessel to comply with the provisions of subsection (g) or other applicable incident reporting laws;

(B) information to secure the safety of passengers or crew on board the vessel; or

(C) any information to law enforcement officials performing official duties in the course and scope of an investigation; and


(2) treat any information derived from, or obtained in connection with, post-assault counseling or other supportive services confidential, so no such information may be released to the cruise line or any legal representative thereof without the prior knowledge and approval in writing of the patient, or, if the patient is unable to provide written authorization, the patient's next-of-kin.


(f) Crew Access to Passenger Staterooms.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies shall—

(1) establish and implement procedures and restrictions concerning—

(A) which crewmembers have access to passenger staterooms; and

(B) the periods during which they have that access; and


(2) ensure that the procedures and restrictions are fully and properly implemented and periodically reviewed.


(g) Log Book and Reporting Requirements.—

(1) In general.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies shall—

(A) record in a log book, either electronically or otherwise, in a centralized location readily accessible to law enforcement personnel, a report on—

(i) all complaints of crimes described in paragraph (3)(A)(i),

(ii) all complaints of theft of property valued in excess of $1,000, and

(iii) all complaints of other crimes,


committed on any voyage that embarks or disembarks passengers in the United States; and

(B) make such log book available upon request to any agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, any member of the United States Coast Guard, and any law enforcement officer performing official duties in the course and scope of an investigation.


(2) Details required.—The information recorded under paragraph (1) shall include, at a minimum—

(A) the vessel operator;

(B) the name of the cruise line;

(C) the flag under which the vessel was operating at the time the reported incident occurred;

(D) the age and gender of the victim and the accused assailant;

(E) the nature of the alleged crime or complaint, as applicable, including whether the alleged perpetrator was a passenger or a crewmember;

(F) the vessel's position at the time of the incident, if known, or the position of the vessel at the time of the initial report;

(G) the time, date, and method of the initial report and the law enforcement authority to which the initial report was made;

(H) the time and date the incident occurred, if known;

(I) the total number of passengers and the total number of crew members on the voyage; and

(J) the case number or other identifier provided by the law enforcement authority to which the initial report was made.


(3) Requirement to report crimes and other information.—

(A) In general.—The owner of a vessel to which this section applies (or the owner's designee)—

(i) shall contact the nearest Federal Bureau of Investigation Field Office or Legal Attache by telephone as soon as possible after the occurrence on board the vessel of an incident involving homicide, suspicious death, a missing United States national, kidnapping, assault with serious bodily injury, any offense to which section 2241, 2242, 2243, or 2244(a) or (c) of title 18 applies, firing or tampering with the vessel, or theft of money or property in excess of $10,000 to report the incident;

(ii) shall furnish a written report of each incident specified in clause (i) to the Internet website maintained by the Secretary of Transportation under paragraph (4)(A);

(iii) may report any serious incident that does not meet the reporting requirements of clause (i) and that does not require immediate attention by the Federal Bureau of Investigation via the Internet website maintained by the Secretary of Transportation under paragraph (4)(A); and

(iv) may report any other criminal incident involving passengers or crewmembers, or both, to the proper State or local government law enforcement authority.


(B) Incidents to which subparagraph (A) applies.—Subparagraph (A) applies to an incident involving criminal activity if—

(i) the vessel, regardless of registry, is owned, in whole or in part, by a United States person, regardless of the nationality of the victim or perpetrator, and the incident occurs when the vessel is within the admiralty and maritime jurisdiction of the United States and outside the jurisdiction of any State;

(ii) the incident concerns an offense by or against a United States national committed outside the jurisdiction of any nation;

(iii) the incident occurs in the Territorial Sea of the United States, regardless of the nationality of the vessel, the victim, or the perpetrator; or

(iv) the incident concerns a victim or perpetrator who is a United States national on a vessel during a voyage that departed from or will arrive at a United States port.


(4) Availability of incident data via internet.—

(A) Website.—

(i) In general.—The Secretary of Transportation shall maintain a statistical compilation of all incidents on board a cruise vessel specified in paragraph (3)(A)(i) on an Internet website that provides a numerical accounting of the missing persons and alleged crimes reported under that paragraph without regard to the investigative status of the incident.

(ii) Updates and other requirements.—The compilation under clause (i) shall—

(I) be updated not less frequently than quarterly;

(II) be able to be sorted by cruise line;

(III) identify each cruise line by name;

(IV) identify each crime or alleged crime committed or allegedly committed by a passenger or crewmember;

(V) identify the number of individuals alleged overboard; and

(VI) include the approximate number of passengers and crew carried by each cruise line during each quarterly reporting period.


(iii) User-friendly format.—The Secretary of Transportation shall ensure that the compilation, data, and any other information provided on the Internet website maintained under this subparagraph are in a user-friendly format. The Secretary shall, to the greatest extent practicable, use existing commercial off the shelf technology to transfer and establish the website, and shall not independently develop software, or acquire new hardware in operating the site.


(B) Access to website.—Each cruise line taking on or discharging passengers in the United States shall include a link on its Internet website to the website maintained by the Secretary of Transportation under subparagraph (A).


(h) Enforcement.—

(1) Penalties.—

(A) Civil penalty.—Any person that violates this section or a regulation under this section shall be liable for a civil penalty of not more than $25,000 for each day during which the violation continues, except that the maximum penalty for a continuing violation is $50,000.

(B) Criminal penalty.—Any person that willfully violates this section or a regulation under this section shall be fined not more than $250,000 or imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both.


(2) Denial of entry.—The Secretary may deny entry into the United States to a vessel to which this section applies if the owner of the vessel—

(A) commits an act or omission for which a penalty may be imposed under this subsection; or

(B) fails to pay a penalty imposed on the owner under this subsection.


(i) Procedures.—Within 6 months after the date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010, the Secretary shall issue guidelines, training curricula, and inspection and certification procedures necessary to carry out the requirements of this section.

(j) Regulations.—The Secretary and the Commandant shall each issue such regulations as are necessary to implement this section.

(k) Application.—

(1) In general.—This section and section 3508 apply to a passenger vessel (as defined in section 2101(22)) that—

(A) is authorized to carry at least 250 passengers;

(B) has onboard sleeping facilities for each passenger;

(C) is on a voyage that embarks or disembarks passengers in the United States; and

(D) is not engaged on a coastwise voyage.


(2) Federal and state vessels.—This section and section 3508 do not apply to a vessel of the United States operated by the Federal Government or a vessel owned and operated by a State.


(l) Definitions.—In this section and section 3508:

(1) Commandant.—The term "Commandant" means the Commandant of the Coast Guard.

(2) Owner.—The term "owner" means the owner, charterer, managing operator, master, or other individual in charge of a vessel.

(Added Pub. L. 111–207, §3(a), July 27, 2010, 124 Stat. 2244; amended Pub. L. 113–281, title III, §321, Dec. 18, 2014, 128 Stat. 3054.)

References in Text

The date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010, referred to in subsecs. (a)(1)(C), (3) and (i), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 111–207, which was approved July 27, 2010.

Amendments

2014—Subsec. (g)(3)(A)(ii). Pub. L. 113–281, §321(a)(1), substituted "each incident specified in clause (i) to the Internet website maintained by the Secretary of Transportation under paragraph (4)(A)" for "the incident to an Internet based portal maintained by the Secretary".

Subsec. (g)(3)(A)(iii). Pub. L. 113–281, §321(a)(2), substituted "Internet website maintained by the Secretary of Transportation under paragraph (4)(A)" for "Internet based portal maintained by the Secretary".

Subsec. (g)(4)(A). Pub. L. 113–281, §321(b)(1), added subpar. (A) and struck out former subpar. (A). Prior to amendment, text read as follows: "The Secretary shall maintain a statistical compilation of all incidents described in paragraph (3)(A)(i) on an Internet site that provides a numerical accounting of the missing persons and alleged crimes recorded in each report filed under paragraph (3)(A)(i) that are no longer under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The data shall be updated no less frequently than quarterly, aggregated by cruise line, each cruise line shall be identified by name, and each crime shall be identified as to whether it was committed by a passenger or a crew member."

Subsec. (g)(4)(B). Pub. L. 113–281, §321(b)(2), substituted "Secretary of Transportation" for "Secretary".

Findings

Pub. L. 111–207, §2, July 27, 2010, 124 Stat. 2243, provided that: "The Congress makes the following findings:

"(1) There are approximately 200 overnight ocean-going cruise vessels worldwide. The average ocean-going cruise vessel carries 2,000 passengers with a crew of 950 people.

"(2) In 2007 alone, approximately 12,000,000 passengers were projected to take a cruise worldwide.

"(3) Passengers on cruise vessels have an inadequate appreciation of their potential vulnerability to crime while on ocean voyages, and those who may be victimized lack the information they need to understand their legal rights or to know whom to contact for help in the immediate aftermath of the crime.

"(4) Sexual violence, the disappearance of passengers from vessels on the high seas, and other serious crimes have occurred during luxury cruises.

"(5) Over the last 5 years, sexual assault and physical assaults on cruise vessels were the leading crimes investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation with regard to cruise vessel incidents.

"(6) These crimes at sea can involve attacks both by passengers and crewmembers on other passengers and crewmembers.

"(7) Except for United States flagged vessels, or foreign flagged vessels operating in an area subject to the direct jurisdiction of the United States, there are no Federal statutes or regulations that explicitly require cruise lines to report alleged crimes to United States Government officials.

"(8) It is not known precisely how often crimes occur on cruise vessels or exactly how many people have disappeared during ocean voyages because cruise line companies do not make comprehensive, crime-related data readily available to the public.

"(9) Obtaining reliable crime-related cruise data from governmental sources can be difficult, because multiple countries may be involved when a crime occurs on the high seas, including the flag country for the vessel, the country of citizenship of particular passengers, and any countries having special or maritime jurisdiction.

"(10) It can be difficult for professional crime investigators to immediately secure an alleged crime scene on a cruise vessel, recover evidence of an onboard offense, and identify or interview potential witnesses to the alleged crime.

"(11) Most cruise vessels that operate into and out of United States ports are registered under the laws of another country, and investigations and prosecutions of crimes against passengers and crewmembers may involve the laws and authorities of multiple nations.

"(12) The Department of Homeland Security has found it necessary to establish 500-yard security zones around cruise vessels to limit the risk of terrorist attack. Recently piracy has dramatically increased throughout the world.

"(13) To enhance the safety of cruise passengers, the owners of cruise vessels could upgrade, modernize, and retrofit the safety and security infrastructure on such vessels by installing peep holes in passenger room doors, installing security video cameras in targeted areas, limiting access to passenger rooms to select staff during specific times, and installing acoustic hailing and warning devices capable of communicating over distances."

§3508. Crime scene preservation training for passenger vessel crewmembers

(a) In General.—Within 1 year after the date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010, the Secretary, in consultation with the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Maritime Administration, shall develop training standards and curricula to allow for the certification of passenger vessel security personnel, crewmembers, and law enforcement officials on the appropriate methods for prevention, detection, evidence preservation, and reporting of criminal activities in the international maritime environment. The Administrator of the Maritime Administration may certify organizations in the United States and abroad that offer the curriculum for training and certification under subsection (c).

(b) Minimum Standards.—The standards established by the Secretary under subsection (a) shall include—

(1) the training and certification of vessel security personnel, crewmembers, and law enforcement officials in accordance with accepted law enforcement and security guidelines, policies, and procedures, including recommendations for incorporating a background check process for personnel trained and certified in foreign ports;

(2) the training of students and instructors in all aspects of prevention, detection, evidence preservation, and reporting of criminal activities in the international maritime environment; and

(3) the provision or recognition of off-site training and certification courses in the United States and foreign countries to develop and provide the required training and certification described in subsection (a) and to enhance security awareness and security practices related to the preservation of evidence in response to crimes on board passenger vessels.


(c) Certification Requirement.—Beginning 2 years after the standards are established under subsection (b), no vessel to which this section applies may enter a United States port on a voyage (or voyage segment) on which a United States citizen is a passenger unless there is at least 1 crewmember onboard who is certified as having successfully completed training in the prevention, detection, evidence preservation, and reporting of criminal activities in the international maritime environment on passenger vessels under subsection (a).

(d) Interim Training Requirement.—No vessel to which this section applies may enter a United States port on a voyage (or voyage segment) on which a United States citizen is a passenger unless there is at least 1 crewmember onboard who has been properly trained in the prevention detection, evidence preservation and the reporting requirements of criminal activities in the international maritime environment. The owner of a such a vessel shall maintain certification or other documentation, as prescribed by the Secretary, verifying the training of such individual and provide such documentation upon request for inspection in connection with enforcement of the provisions of this section. This subsection shall take effect 1 year after the date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Safety and Security Act of 2010 and shall remain in effect until superseded by the requirements of subsection (c).

(e) Civil Penalty.—Any person that violates this section or a regulation under this section shall be liable for a civil penalty of not more than $50,000.

(f) Denial of Entry.—The Secretary may deny entry into the United States to a vessel to which this section applies if the owner of the vessel—

(1) commits an act or omission for which a penalty may be imposed under subsection (e); or

(2) fails to pay a penalty imposed on the owner under subsection (e).

(Added Pub. L. 111–207, §3(a), July 27, 2010, 124 Stat. 2250.)

References in Text

The date of enactment of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010, referred to in subsecs. (a) and (d), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 111–207, which was approved July 27, 2010.

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 single hull non-self-propelled tank vessels.

        

Amendments

2006Pub. L. 109–304, §15(14), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703, inserted "single hull" before "non-self-propelled" in item 3719.

1996Pub. L. 104–324, title IX, §901(c), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3947, added item 3719.

1990Pub. 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.

§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 a tanker; and

(2) 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; Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §617(a)(2), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2973.)

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

2010—Subsec. (b)(1) to (3). Pub. L. 111–281 redesignated pars. (2) and (3) as (1) and (2), respectively, and struck out former par. (1), which read as follows: "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;".

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".

§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.

Oil Fuel Tank Protection

Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §617(e), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2973, provided that:

"(1) Application.—An offshore supply vessel of at least 6,000 gross tons as measured under section 14302 of title 46, United States Code, that is constructed under a contract entered into after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010], or that is delivered after August 1, 2010, with an aggregate capacity of 600 cubic meters or more of oil fuel, shall comply with the requirements of Regulation 12A under Annex I to the Protocol of 1978 relating to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, entitled Oil Fuel Tank Protection, regardless of whether such vessel is engaged in the coastwise trade or on an international voyage.

"(2) Definition.—In this subsection the term 'oil fuel' means any oil used as fuel in connection with the propulsion and auxiliary machinery of the vessel in which such oil is carried."

Regulations for Offshore Supply Vessels of at Least 6,000 Gross Tons

Pub. L. 111–281, title VI, §617(f), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2974, as amended by Pub. L. 111–330, §1(8), Dec. 22, 2010, 124 Stat. 3569, provided that:

"(1) In general.—Not later than January 1, 2012, the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall promulgate regulations to implement the amendments and authorities enacted by this section [amending sections 2101, 3702, 7312, and 8104 of this title, enacting provisions set out as a note under this section, and amending provisions set out as a note under section 2101 of this title] for offshore supply vessels of at least 6,000 gross tons as measured under section 14302 of title 46, United States Code, and to ensure the safe carriage of oil, hazardous substances, and individuals in addition to the crew on such vessels. The final rule issued pursuant to such rulemaking may supersede the interim final rule promulgated under paragraph (2) of this subsection. In promulgating regulations under this subsection, the Secretary shall take into consideration the characteristics of offshore supply vessels, their methods of operation, and their service in support of exploration, exploitation, or production of offshore mineral or energy resources.

"(2) Interim final rule authority.—As soon as is practicable and without regard to the provisions of chapters 5 and 6 of title 5, United States Code, the Secretary shall issue an interim final rule as a temporary regulation implementing this section (including the amendments made by this section) for offshore supply vessels of at least 6,000 gross tons as measured under section 14302 of title 46, United States Code, and to ensure the safe carriage of oil, hazardous substances, and individuals in addition to the crew on such vessels.

"(3) Interim period.—After the effective date of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010], prior to the effective date of the regulations prescribed by paragraph (2) of this subsection, and without regard to the provisions of chapters 5 and 6 of title 5, United States Code, and the offshore supply vessel tonnage limits of applicable regulations and policy guidance promulgated prior to the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010], the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating may—

"(A) issue a certificate of inspection under section 3309 of title 46, United States Code, to an offshore supply vessel of at least 6,000 gross tons as measured under section 14302 of that title if the Secretary determines that such vessel's arrangements and equipment meet the current Coast Guard requirements for certification as a cargo and miscellaneous vessel;

"(B) authorize a master, mate, or engineer who possesses an ocean or near coastal license and endorsement under part 11 of subchapter B of title 46, Code of Federal Regulations, (or any successor regulation) that qualifies the licensed officer for service on offshore supply vessels of at least 3,000 gross tons but less than 6,000 gross tons, as measured under section 14302 of title 46, United States Code, to operate offshore supply vessels of at least 6,000 gross tons, as measured under such section; and

"(C) authorize any such master, mate, or engineer who also possesses an ocean or near coastal license and endorsement under such part that qualifies the licensed officer for service on non trade-restricted vessels of at least 1,600 gross tons but less than 3,000 gross tons, as measured under such section, to increase the tonnage limitation of such license and endorsement under section 11.402(c) of such part, using service on vessels certificated under both subchapters I and L of such title and measured only under such section, except that such tonnage limitation shall not exceed 10,000 gross tons as measured under such section."

Oil Transfers From Vessels

Pub. L. 111–281, title VII, §702, Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2980, as amended by Pub. L. 111–330, §1(10), Dec. 22, 2010, 124 Stat. 3570, provided that:

"(a) Regulations.—Within 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010], the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall promulgate regulations to reduce the risks of oil spills in operations involving the transfer of oil from or to a tank vessel. The regulations—

"(1) shall focus on operations that have the highest risks of discharge, including operations at night and in inclement weather;

"(2) shall consider—

"(A) requirements for the use of equipment, such as putting booms in place for transfers, safety, and environmental impacts;

"(B) operational procedures such as manning standards, communications protocols, and restrictions on operations in high-risk areas; or

"(C) both such requirements and operational procedures; and

"(3) shall take into account the safety of personnel and effectiveness of available procedures and equipment for preventing or mitigating transfer spills.

"(b) Application With State Laws.—The regulations promulgated under subsection (a) do not preclude the enforcement of any State law or regulation the requirements of which are at least as stringent as requirements under the regulations (as determined by the Secretary) that—

"(1) applies in State waters; and

"(2) does not conflict with, or interfere with the enforcement of, requirements and operational procedures under the regulations."

Improvements To Reduce Human Error and Near Miss Incidents

Pub. L. 111–281, title VII, §703, Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2981, as amended by Pub. L. 111–330, §1(11), Dec. 22, 2010, 124 Stat. 3570, provided that:

"(a) Report.—Within 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010], the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall transmit a report to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure that, using available data—

"(1) identifies the types of human errors that, combined, could cause oil spills, with particular attention to human error caused by fatigue, in the past 10 years;

"(2) in consultation with representatives of industry and labor and experts in the fields of marine casualties and human factors, identifies the most frequent types of near-miss oil spill incidents involving vessels such as collisions, allisions, groundings, and loss of propulsion in the past 10 years;

"(3) describes the extent to which there are gaps in the data required under paragraphs (1) and (2), including gaps in the ability to define and identify fatigue, and explains the reason for those gaps; and

"(4) includes recommendations by the Secretary and representatives of industry and labor and experts in the fields of marine casualties and human factors to address the identified types of errors and any such gaps in the data.

"(b) Measures.—Based on the findings contained in the report required by subsection (a), the Secretary shall take appropriate action to reduce the risk of oil spills caused by human error.

"(c) Confidentiality of Voluntarily Submitted Information.—The identity of a person making a voluntary disclosure under this section, and any information obtained from any such voluntary disclosure, shall be treated as confidential.

"(d) Discovery of Voluntarily Submitted Information.—

"(1) In general.—Except as provided in this subsection, a party in a judicial proceeding may not use discovery to obtain information or data collected or received by the Secretary for use in the report required in subsection (a).

"(2) Exception.—

"(A) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), a court may allow discovery by a party in a judicial proceeding of data described in paragraph (1) if, after an in camera review of the information or data, the court decides that there is a compelling reason to allow the discovery.

"(B) When a court allows discovery in a judicial proceeding as permitted under this paragraph, the court shall issue a protective order—

"(i) to limit the use of the data to the judicial proceeding; and

"(ii) to prohibit dissemination of the data to any person who does not need access to the data for the proceeding.

"(C) A court may allow data it has decided is discoverable under this paragraph to be admitted into evidence in a judicial proceeding only if the court places the data under seal to prevent the use of the data for a purpose other than for the proceeding.

"(3) Application.—Paragraph (1) shall not apply to—

"(A) any disclosure made with actual knowledge that the disclosure was false, inaccurate, or misleading; or

"(B) any disclosure made with reckless disregard as to the truth or falsity of that disclosure.

"(e) Restriction on Use of Data.—Data that is voluntarily submitted for the purpose of the study required under subsection (a) shall not be used in an administrative action under chapter 77 of title 46, United States Code."

[Pub. L. 111–330, §1(11), Dec. 22, 2010, 124 Stat. 3570, which directed amendment of section 703(a) of Pub. L. 111–281, set out above, by inserting "of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating" after "Secretary", was executed by making the insertion after "Secretary" the first place appearing, to reflect the probable intent of Congress.]

Preservation of State Authority

Pub. L. 111–281, title VII, §711(c), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2987, provided that: "Nothing in this Act [see Tables for classification] or in any other provision of Federal law related to the regulation of maritime transportation of oil shall affect, or be construed or interpreted as preempting, the authority of any State or political subdivision thereof which require the escort by one or more tugs of laden oil tankers in the areas which are specified in section 4116(c) of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 [Pub. L. 101–380] (46 U.S.C. 3703 note)."

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, as amended by Pub. L. 108–293, title VII, §702(a), Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1068, provided that:

"(a) Standards.—The Secretary may 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.—No sooner than 1 year after the Secretary prescribes regulations under subsection (a), the Secretary may 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 any 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, as amended by Pub. L. 111–281, title VII, §711(b)(1), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2987, provided that:

"(c) Escorts for Certain Tankers.—

"(1) In general.—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.

"(2) Prince william sound, alaska.—

"(A) In general.—The requirement in paragraph (1) relating to single hulled tankers in Prince William Sound, Alaska, described in that paragraph being escorted by at least 2 towing vessels or other vessels considered to be appropriate by the Secretary (including regulations promulgated in accordance with section 3703(a)(3) of title 46, United States Code, as set forth in part 168 of title 33, Code of Federal Regulations (as in effect on March 1, 2009) implementing this subsection with respect to those tankers) shall apply to double hulled tankers over 5,000 gross tons transporting oil in bulk in Prince William Sound, Alaska.

"(B) Implementation of requirements.—The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall prescribe interim final regulations to carry out subparagraph (A) as soon as practicable without notice and hearing pursuant to section 553 of title 5 of the United States Code."

"(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."

[Pub. L. 111–281, title VII, §711(b)(2), Oct. 15, 2010, 124 Stat. 2987, provided that: "The amendments made by subsection (b) [amending section 4116(c) of Pub. L. 101–380, set out above] take effect on the date that is 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 15, 2010]."]

§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 57100.


(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 as a wrecked vessel under section 12112 of this title.


(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 as a wrecked vessel under section 12112 of this title 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 as a wrecked vessel under section 12112 of this title 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; Pub. L. 109–304, §15(15), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1703; Pub. L. 115–91, div. C, title XXXV, §3502(b)(3), Dec. 12, 2017, 131 Stat. 1910.)

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

2017—Subsec. (b)(6). Pub. L. 115–91 substituted "section 57100" for "section 11 of the Merchant Ship Sales Act of 1946 (50 App. U.S.C. 1744)".

2006—Subsec. (c)(1)(C), (2), (3). Pub. L. 109–304 substituted "documentation as a wrecked vessel under section 12112 of this title" for "documentation under section 4136 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (46 App. U.S.C. 14)".

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.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

Tank Vessels Over 5,000 Gross Tons To Comply Until January 1, 2015, With Environmentally Protective Structural and Operational Requirements

Pub. L. 101–380, title IV, §4115(b), Aug. 18, 1990, 104 Stat. 520, 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; Pub. L. 108–293, title VII, §705, Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1075; Pub. L. 109–241, title IX, §901(n), July 11, 2006, 120 Stat. 565, 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—