Coast Guard terminates voyages of charter vessels operating illegally
Destin, Florida
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DESTIN, Fl. -- The Coast Guard terminated the voyages of eight charter vessels operating illegally near Destin, Florida, during boardings that took place July 17 to July 22, 2019.    

The eight vessels were operating outside the regulations set forth by the Vessel Passenger Safety Act.

“Every charter vessel is required to meet safety standards set by the Coast Guard,” said Ensign Trevor Vallet, from Sector Mobile. “We enforce these standards with local agency partners to ensure charter passengers have safe options to enjoy our nation’s waterways.”

The following violations were noted during boardings for all eight of the vessels:

            -Violation of 46 C.F.R. 176.100 (a) for not having a valid Certificate of Inspection

-Violation of 46 C.F.R 15.515 (b) for not having a credentialed mariner in control while operating a small passenger vessel

            -Violation of 46 C.F.R. 170.120 for failure to have a valid stability letter

            -Violation of 46 C.F.R. 16.201 for failure to be enrolled in a drug consortium

Additionally, one vessel operator was found to be boating under the influence and was arrested.

Law enforcement personnel from Coast Guard Sector Mobile, Coast Guard Station Destin, and Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office participated. 

Owners and operators of illegal charter vessels can face maximum civil penalties of more than $50,000 for illegal passenger-for-hire operations. 

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