More Information About New Proposed Rules from NOAA
Among the impacts of this new proposed rule from NOAA, dubbed the North Atlantic Right Whale Vessel Strike Reduction Rule, boaters should be aware that it would:
- Broaden the current 10-knot speed restriction to include vessels 35 feet and larger (down from 65 feet)
- Expand the go-slow zones to include virtually the entire Atlantic Coast, plus 90 miles from shore in some areas
- Extend these zone restrictions as long as seven months a year
For vessels, this drastically redefines which boats would have to abide by NOAA speed restrictions; 35 foot vessels are not large by the standards of ocean-vessels. Additionally, the rule would now apply to a much larger geography throughout much more of the calendar year.
“NOAA’s proposed rule severely underestimates the financial impacts on the recreational fishing and boating industry, the largest contributing sector to America’s $689 billion outdoor recreation economy,” said Frank Hugelmeyer, President of the National Marine Manufacturers Association. “NOAA must pause implementation of its rule and incorporate key stakeholder feedback and data. Without serious revisions, the economic health of coastal communities, small marine business – and those businesses who rely on a robust fishing and boating economy – as well as thousands of jobs along the East Coast are at risk.”
For additional information about this proposed rule from NOAA, please visit the NMMA policy page here.