Nautical News: For the week of July 30th

MISSING BOATER’S BODY POSITIVELY IDENTIFIED

Massachusetts State Police say a body pulled from the waters off the Brant Rock section of Marshfield late Saturday afternoon, was the young man who fell overboard a couple of weeks ago in a boating accident. Since that accident, police dive teams, cadaver sniffing dogs, and volunteers have searched the waters every day for the missing young man. A recreational scuba diver made the gruesome discovery near the rocks where the accident happened and notified police.

WRECK OF ANDREA DORIA CLAIMS LIFE OF ANOTHER DIVER

The wreck of the Andrea Doria has claimed the life of another diver. The body of a 27 year old Los Angeles man was recovered by fellow divers on a charter dive boat named the John Jack after he failed to surface. The Andrea Doria lies in about 200 feet of water 50 miles south of Nantucket. The Italian luxury vessel sank after a collision at sea in 1956 and rests on its side. More than a dozen other divers have lost their lives while attempting to explore the wreck.

NOAA NAMES NEW CHIEF LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER

NOAA has finally named its new chief law enforcement director to replace Dale Jones. Jones left that NOAA position 15 months ago in disgrace in midst of a scandal. The new director is Bruce Buckson, a Floridian, with 29 years of state and federal wildlife law enforcement experience and a graduate of the FBI Academy. One of his first jobs will be to appoint a special agent in charge of the Northeast region. The previous agent in charge of the Northeast region was Andrew Cohen, who also resigned around the same time that his boss, Dale Jones, stepped down.

CPR SAVES LOBSTERMAN AFTER FALL OVERBOARD

The Coast Guard transported an 18 year old man to Falmouth Hospital after he fell off a Fairhaven based lobster boat named the Helen Irene, which was working off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. Apparently the young man’s leg became entangled in a line and was pulled overboard. He spent approximately two minutes underwater and was unresponsive when his fellow crewmates recovered him. Luckily, one of the crew knew CPR and was able to revive him. A Coast Guard official said having someone on board who knew CPR saved the man’s life. The Coast Guard encourages all mariners to be certified in CPR and learn basic lifesaving techniques.

TWO DIVERS DIE IN FLORIDA’S MINI LOBSTER SEASON

Florida’s 2 day mini lobster season last week kept the Florida Marine Patrol and the Coast Guard busy as numerous divers were reported missing. Some divers were found OK, floating on the surface far away from their dive boats, but two were found dead. Nautical Talk Radio has learned that one of the divers found dead was a 54 year old Massachusetts man, who was diving with his son who lives in Florida. Officials said wind and rough seas contributed to the problems. Florida has two lobster seasons. The 2 day mini season and an 8 month season. The mini lobster season is always the last Wednesday and Thursday in July, no matter what the weather. It begins one minute after midnight on Wednesday and ends exactly at midnight on Thursday. The 8 month lobster season is always August 6 through March 31.

TROPHY ATLANTIC BLUE FIN TUNA SEASON OVER

The National Marine Fisheries Service has closed the northern area Angling category fishery for large medium and giant “trophy” Atlantic bluefin tuna as of July 29 for the remainder of 2011. Anyone north of Great Egg Inlet, New Jersey, is prohibited from catching or possessing a large, medium, or giant blue fin tuna, which measures 73 inches or longer.

CONGRESSMAN SUBMITS ANOTHER BILL TO STOP CATCH SHARES

According to his staff, North Carolina Congressman Walter Jones is preparing to submit for the second time his amendment to stop catch shares. According to a group called the Recreational Fishing Alliance, catch shares forever memorialize one’s allocation and will not allow for an increased in that quota. Catch shares in the recreational sector will be in the form of fish tags or state issued individual fishing quotas, which will cap participation to a few privileged fishermen. Recreational fishermen will be divided into the “haves” and “have nots” with the future of new fishermen hanging in the balance. Opponents to catch shares point out that this type of division has already occurred in New England with the cod and haddock stocks. Recreational fishermen on charter boats and recreational fishermen on privately owned boats have different rules.

TWO CARNIVAL CRUISE SHIPS IN ACCIDENT WHILE DOCKING

The Coast Guard is investigating how a Carnival cruise ship bumped into another Carnival cruise ship while docking in Key West. Officials said the Carnival Fantasy bumped into the Carnival Imagination causing some minor damage, but no injuries or pollution. In accordance with Coast Guard policy, the captain and crew aboard the Fantasy were being tested for drug and alcohol use.

COAST GUARD’S 221st BIRTHDAY AUGUST 4th

The Coast Guard will be celebrating its 221st birthday on August 4th. Back in 1790, Congress authorized the construction of ten vessels to enforce tariff and trade laws and prevent smuggling. Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, was in charge of the service, which was then known as the Revenue Marine and the Revenue Cutter Service. Eventually, the Revenue Service merged with four other agencies and changed its name to the Coast Guard. Those four other agencies were the Lighthouse Service, the Steamboat Inspection Service, the Bureau of Navigation, and the Lifesaving Service. The multiple missions and responsibilities of today’s Coast Guard are directly connected to this diverse heritage.

STEVEN SPIELBERG FINED FOR BEACHING SPEEDBOAT

Movie mogul Steven Spielberg was fined 172 euros by the Italian coast guard after his speedboat came too close to the shore in Sardinia and disturbed the bathers. The triple Academy Award winning director was vacationing with a group of people including his goddaughter Gwyneth Paltrow in the Mediterranean, on his 280 foot long yacht named the Seven Seas. Spielberg lowered his speed boat off his yacht and cruised to the beach to go ashore. Swimmers immediately complained to the Italian coast guard that Spielberg’s speed boat was a danger to them. When approached by the coast guard, Spielberg apologized and offered to pay the fine on the spot, but was told that he would have to mail it in. The paparazzi said the 172 euros fine was unlikely to bother the 64 year-old director who has an estimated fortune of $3 billion. In addition to his speed boat, his $360 million yacht is equipped with a helipad, two swimming pools, a spa, a massage room, and two home cinemas.

FISHERMAN JUMPS INTO WATER TO RIDE SHARK

And last on today’s nautical news, a local, avid fisherman jumped off a boat, on to the back of a basking shark, and went for a ride that he said was the thrill of his life. Erik Jacobs of Middleboro said that he always wanted to grab on to a shark and swim with it, and when the opportunity to do so presented itself off of Cape Cod, he couldn’t resist. Basking sharks are the second largest fish in the ocean and can grow to up to 30 feet long and weigh several tons. They eat zooplankton and small fish, and apparently not humans.

About John Shea