Nautical News: For the week of August 20, 2017

DEMOLITION OF FORE RIVER BRIDGE TO CAUSE CHANNEL CLOSURE

 

The new Fore River bridge on Route 3A connecting Weymouth to Quincy is now partially open to automobile traffic, but boaters transiting under the bridge should be aware that there will be two extended closures of the waterway during the month of September as workers dismantle the old temporary bridge. The Coast Guard and the contractor have agreed that there will be absolutely no vessel movement underneath the bridge between September 11th and September 17th and then again between September 25th and October 3rd. Again, during these time periods, the waterway will be completely closed to all vessels.

 

SENATOR WARREN HOLDING TOWN HALL MEETING IN MARSHFIELD

 

Senator Elizabeth Warren will be hosting a town hall on Thursday, August 24 at Furnace Brook Middle School in Marshfield. Doors open at 5:30PM and meeting starts at 6:30PM. Senator Warren will be making remarks and answering questions about what’s happening in the Senate and how she’s fighting for Massachusetts fishermen. This is a chance to talk with her staff about any questions or concerns you might have or assistance you may need.

SCUBA DIVER KILLED WHILE CLEANING BOTTOM OF YACHT

A scuba diver was killed while cleaning the bottom of a yacht docked in Florida, when a forward bow thruster was turned on. Witnesses said the thruster pulled the diver in face first. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The incident is under investigation by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Questions like was a dive flag visible, were all crew notified, were do not touch signs in place on the controls at the helm, were the keys removed or ignition switches disabled. The accident has many yacht captains and divers reviewing their procedures for working in the water underneath yachts.

 

NORTHEAST FISHERIES SCIENCE CENTER SCHEDULES OUTREACH MEETINGS

 

The Northeast Fisheries Science Center has scheduled “port outreach meetings” with commercial and recreational fishermen to talk about upcoming assessments of 20 groundfish stocks such as cod, haddock and sole. The science center says it will explain the stock assessment process and ways industry concerns can be addressed. Meetings will be held this month in Chatham, New Bedford, Gloucester, Point Judith, and in Montauk.

 

SALTONSTALL-KENNEDY FISHERIES GRANTS AVAILABLE

 

NOAA Fisheries is pleased to announce that the 2018 Saltonstall-Kennedy Grant competition is currently open. All interested applicants must submit a two-page pre-proposal by October 10, 2017, to the Federal Funding Opportunity posted at Grants.gov. The goal of the Saltonstall-Kennedy Grant program is to fund projects that address the needs of fishing communities, optimize economic benefits by building and maintaining sustainable fisheries, and increase other opportunities to keep working waterfronts viable. Please visit the Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office’s Saltonstall-Kennedy Program web page for more specific application information.

 

ATLANTIC STURGEON LISTED ON ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT

 

Atlantic sturgeon were listed under the Endangered Species Act in 2012 and in accordance with that act, this past week, NOAA Fisheries designated a critical habitat area for Atlantic sturgeon covering almost 4,000 miles of rivers between Maine and Florida. Historically, Atlantic sturgeon inhabited approximately 38 rivers in the United States. The critical habitat designation will require federal agencies to consult with NOAA Fisheries before they operate or fund activities in that designated area, but does not include any new restrictions or management measures for recreational or commercial fishing, nor does it create any sanctuaries or refuges. Atlantic sturgeon is an anadromous species. They live in saltwater and travel to rivers to spawn or lay their eggs. Unlike some anadromous fish, sturgeon do not die after spawning and return to spawn multiple times in the same body of water. Atlantic sturgeon can grow up to 14 feet long, weigh up to 800 pounds, and live up to 60 years. Catching Atlantic sturgeon for their eggs to be used for caviar was very popular during the 1900s.

 

YACHT SEIZED FROM TEXAS OILMAN

 

A 217-foot yacht named Natita has been seized by Goldman Sachs after its owner, a Texas oilman, failed to make payments on a loan secured by the yacht. Court filings showed that the oil man borrowed $32 million from the Wall Street firm’s private bank in 2014, using Natita and another one of his yachts, the 186-foot Bad Girl, as collateral. The bank claims they haven’t received a payment on the loan since last November. U.S. Marshals, acting on a court order, impounded the yacht at a shipyard in West Palm Beach, where the yacht has been docked for more than a year. Employees at the shipyard said the owner owes the shipyard hundreds of thousands of dollars. The yacht is currently listed for sale for $39.9 million, down from its original asking price of $52 million.


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