Chapter 6 Review
Other Water Activities and Marine Environment—Continued
Canoeists and kayakers are boaters too, and they need to follow safe boating practices. A study of paddlesport accident statistics from 1995 to 2000 identifies problem areas that offer the greatest opportunities to reduce canoe and kayak fatalities:
- Approximately HALF of the victims in fatal canoe and kayak accidents were fishing at the time of the accident.
- Over 80% of all canoeing-related fatality victims were NOT wearing a PFD at the time of the accident.
- Weight shift played a major role in roughly 50% of all canoeing accidents; maintain three points of contact while moving around. (As you move a foot to step forward, you should be holding onto the boat with BOTH hands; then, with both feet down, move one hand at a time.)
- 75% of all on water fatalities were associated with canoeing rather than kayaking.
THE MARINE ENVIRONMENT
SUBMERSED AQUATIC VEGETATION (SAV)
Submersed aquatic vegetation (or SAV) consists of underwater plants often found in shallow areas (usually less than six feet deep). When operating your boat in shallow areas, be careful to avoid damaging SAV, proceed at no wake speed. Do not operate a personal watercraft in such areas.
AQUATIC NUISANCE SPECIES
Non-native aquatic species can increase dramatically under the right conditions, displacing native species, clogging waterways, and impacting navigation and recreation. Once introduced, they are nearly impossible to eliminate. Zebra mussels are nuisance species that can be accidentally transported by recreational boaters when caught in propellers, intakes, or attached to hulls. By cleaning your boat before leaving the launching area, you will prevent the spread of these aquatic nuisance species.
Vessels greater than 26 feet in length and operating on federal waters must display a 4 by 8 inch Save our Seas placard in a conspicuous place outlining waste disposal regulations. Placards can be purchased from most boat dealers and marinas.
Disposal of certain waste or liquids is permitted beyond certain distances from shore, however the boaters may never dump plastic or any garbage mixed with plastic from a vessel.
Oil must be kept on board in a receptacle until it can be properly disposed. If oil is spilled into the water accidentally, it MUST be reported to the Coast Guard immediately.
MARINE SANITATION DEVICE (MSD)
A typical sanitation system consists of an installed toilet, a waste treatment system, and/or a holding tank. A marine sanitation device (or MSD) is a system that prevents pollution and the discharge of raw sewage. Be sure to check your MSD for U.S. Coast Guard Certification.
No discharge zones restrict the use of Type 1 and 2 MSDs which have the ability to discharge treated sewage overboard.
Meanwhile, a Type 3 MSD collects waste in a holding tank for removal at pump-out stations. The following sign indicates the presence of a pump-out station.