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Thread: Six pack required on non-navigable water?

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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Default Six pack required on non-navigable water?

    Iím sitting here making out with google and canít figure out if a guy needs a coast guard license to run clients on non-navigable waters. Can anyone enlighten me in this area?
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    Quote Originally Posted by BRWNBR View Post
    Iím sitting here making out with google and canít figure out if a guy needs a coast guard license to run clients on non-navigable waters. Can anyone enlighten me in this area?
    I think you are going to need the above, a friend of mine was taking clients out up at lake Louise and I believe he had the lic. And insurance.

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    Where is there non-navigable water? The definition on that is pretty broad and almost anything you can get a boat on is navigable.

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    Since it doesnít sound like thereís any salt involved, just enroll whomever youíre wondering about in the western rivers ROUPV course. Itís cheap, itís more involved than it used to be but still easy, and keeps you coved so youíre not operating in a grey area and not knowing if youíre legal or not.

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    Once you put a boat with paying clients in the water (engaging in on-water commerce), you've just defined it as a navigable water. Catch 22. You technically can't do business in non-navigable water, since the act of doing business redefines the water, if the gov't wishes to go after you for any reason. So, I think it depends on whether you want to operate 100% above board, or skirt the line and hope for the best.
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    Supporting Member Old John's Avatar
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    any time you accept compensation (money, food, liquor, etc) you are chartering. anytime you are chartering without a license you put everything at risk.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Old John View Post
    any time you accept compensation (money, food, liquor, etc) you are chartering. anytime you are chartering without a license you put everything at risk.
    And we're not talking about government here. The real GOTCHA is your insurance company. Haul passengers illegally and one of them gets hurt or killed, and your company is going to say "Jake who?" when a claim is filed and the lawsuits start.
    "Lay in the weeds and wait, and when you get your chance to say something, say something good."
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    Thanks guys
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    If it's non-navigable how do you plan on getting a boat with people on to the body of water and why, just to sit in the boat and not go anywhere?
    "Now you know, and knowing is half the battle." - G.I. Joe

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    Thereís a list of navigable classified water ways for Alaska that are under coast guard jurisdiction. Non navigable are mentioned as not being under CG jurisdiction. I thought I remember talking with the CG and that they said a coast guard license was not required for non navigable waterways, lakes and the bodies of water not covered by the navigable list. Similar to driving a car on a road you need a license but driving down a trail or ditch you do not need a license.
    Iíll just call the CG and insurance people, was just curious if anyone was up to speed on this. But Iím not hearing anything remotely close to what I remember them saying. Old age. Crap. I probably remember it all wrong anyway lol
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  11. #11

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    Not sure if this is any help, but in the Midwest you need a six pack license to guide on any waterways patrolled by the coast guard. Possibly the term is federally navigable waterway which could have commercial boat traffic. I doubt that they use any navigable waterway as the definition for that.

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  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by BRWNBR View Post
    Iím sitting here making out with google and canít figure out if a guy needs a coast guard license to run clients on non-navigable waters. Can anyone enlighten me in this area?
    Once again, CALL THE F USCG! Giggle all you want, and you will just be wasting time with off the wall comments. What is it with this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by copperlake View Post
    Once again, CALL THE F USCG! Giggle all you want, and you will just be wasting time with off the wall comments. What is it with this?
    Ya good point. I think these forums give me a false sense of adult communication that perhaps I lack in my house full of kids and having online conversations is a sub conscience replacement for shooting the breeze with buddies I donít have. I need a therapist.
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    I'd call the coast guard to be 100% sure, but I am 99% sure you don't have to have the license. Insurances/companies and what they may require is a different story. You're pretty spot on there BRWNBR, USCG has a list of what is deemed navigable and there are a fair amount of places I can get to in my jet boat that the CG deems non-navigable. If you aren't in navigable waters the coast guard has no jurisdiction and therefore would not be able to cite you for not having a license. Same goes for all your required CG gear on the boat such as life jackets, lights, etc. The big thing to keep in mind is knowing every inch of water you are going to touch since some portions of a single river may be considered navigable while other parts may not. The driving factor for you will be the insurance company and their requirements. Complying with USCG regulations will just depend on if you ever drive it on navigable waters with clients or if you just want to go to that level to have the option.

  15. #15

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    To be clear here, setting aside my snarkiness, really everyone asking a question about any legality when it comes to boating using a forum like this is a COMPLETE waste of time. One must go to the source to get a determination. I'm a boat builder, every several years or so a wonderful USCG chap (under contract) visits me to see how I'm doing with compliance in my practice. Some builders don't like it, I welcome it. Here's the thing: they are trained that if they don't have the answer they will get back to you after doing diligence. DO NOT take someone's word if you are uncertain! Period, full stop. Best is to make your query in writing, paper trail and all that. Yes, it will take some time in unusual circumstances but advice from Captain Billy Bob can lead to rather unintended consequences. If you dislike the answer and decide to be contrary, well then, YOYO - You're On Your Own.

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    Quote Originally Posted by copperlake View Post
    To be clear here, setting aside my snarkiness, really everyone asking a question about any legality when it comes to boating using a forum like this is a COMPLETE waste of time. One must go to the source to get a determination. I'm a boat builder, every several years or so a wonderful USCG chap (under contract) visits me to see how I'm doing with compliance in my practice. Some builders don't like it, I welcome it. Here's the thing: they are trained that if they don't have the answer they will get back to you after doing diligence. DO NOT take someone's word if you are uncertain! Period, full stop. Best is to make your query in writing, paper trail and all that. Yes, it will take some time in unusual circumstances but advice from Captain Billy Bob can lead to rather unintended consequences. If you dislike the answer and decide to be contrary, well then, YOYO - You're On Your Own.
    Got it. Understand.
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