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East Coast Alerts By Mel Neale January 22, 2009

By Tom Neale - Published January 22, 2009 - Viewed 723 times

ICW to Close for Bridge Work, Mile 5.8, (Norfolk Area):
       From the USCG 5th District Bridge Branch: Mariners are advised that the Norfolk Southern #7 Railroad Bridge, at AIWW mile 5.8, across the Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River in Chesapeake VA, will be closed to vessels to complete structural repairs beginning at 5 a.m. until and including 11 p.m. each Sunday on February 1, February 8, March 1, March 8, April 5, April 12, May 3 and May 10, 2009.  At all other times, the drawbridge will operate in accordance with the operating drawbridge regulations set out in Title 33 Code of Federal Regulations Part 117.997(e).  Mariners should adjust their transits accordingly.

*Italicized text above and below indicates our comment or paraphrase.  Plain text is copied from the Notices to Mariners or other sources given.

Shoaling at Fernandina Beach, FL, Update:
            The following is copied from the text from the 7th District LNM 02, published on January 13, 2009: Shoaling has been reported in the middle of the channel in the vicinity of Fernandina Beach Buoy 1 (LLNR 37985). Fernandina Beach Temp Buoy 1A (LLNR N/A) has been disestablish due to unmarkable shoaling in the middle of the channel. Water depth reported as less than six (6) feet at high tide. For further update and information please contact BMC Robert Lehmann at (904) 241-8401.
            This didn’t make sense to me, so I called the number and talked to a Coast Guard spokesperson who had personally just made the trip to investigate this and she reported that the above is accurate. I just called again (9:00 a.m. on January 22, 2009) and was told that this reported shoal is not “in the vicinity of Fernandina Beach Buoy 1but  in the ICW channel south of Fernandina Beach, past red daybeacons “16” and “18,” where the a new numbering system starts with “1” (“1” here is a 4 second flashing green fixed marker, not a buoy as reported in the LNM), between the City of Fernandina Beach and the entrance to Kingsley Creek. The dredged channel leading past Fernandina Beach ends here.
The shoal is reported to be in the middle of the channel, and it is reported that the Coast Guard tried to mark it, but had to remove the marker because it caused too much confusion. Hopefully this situation will be remedied soon. The tidal range here is sometimes up to 8 feet, so this shoal may be exposed at low tide, if it is as shallow as reported. The Coast Guard has asked the USACE to survey this area.
            A fellow boater reported that on December 22, 2008 at low tide when he passed through here, 5.8 feet flashed on his depthsounder. Our experience with this area over the years is that it is difficult and changeable. If you plan to go through here anytime soon, call the given number (Coast Guard Station Jacksonville Beach) for an update, ask for local knowledge, check the latest USACE surveys (hopefully there will be an updated one) and exercise prudent caution.

GPS Signal Unreliable:
Copied from the USCG 5th District LNM 03: THE GPS NAVIGATION SIGNAL MAY BE UNRELIABLE FROM 12-27 JAN 09 FROM 0200Z-0400Z AND 1800Z-2000Z DUE TO TESTING ON GPS
FREQUENCIES USED IN SHIPBOARD NAVIGATION AND HANDHELD SYSTEMS. GPS SYSTEMS THAT RELY ON GPS, SUCH AS E-911, AIS AND DSC, MAY BE AFFECTED APPROXIMATELY 55 NM NORTH EAST OF PONCE DE LEON INLET AT AN APPROXIMATE TESTING CENTER POINT OF 30 29 48 N, 079 46 06 W, WITH A POSSIBLE IMPACT RADIUS IS 203 NM OF CENTER POINT. DURING THIS PERIOD GPS USERS ARE ENCOURAGED TO REPORT ANY GPS SERVICE OUTAGES THAT THEY MAY EXPERIENCE DURING THIS TESTING VIA THE NAVIGATION INFORMATION SERVICE (NIS) BY CALLING (703)313-5900 OR BY USING THE NAVCEN'S WEB SITE'S GPS REPORT A PROBLEM WORKSHEET AT WWW.NAVCEN.USCG.GOV.

Waterway Analyses, MA:
From the USCG 1st District LNM 02 of 2009:

  1. The Coast Guard will be conducting an analysis of Cape Cod Canal and its approaches with the intent of optimizing the waterway and the aids to navigation therein.
    • The Coast Guard will be conducting an analysis of Hog Island Channel with the intent of optimizing the waterway and the aids to navigation therein.

These studies focus on the areas aids to navigation system, waterborne commerce, marine casualty information, port/harbor resources, emergency response plans, routine and emergency communication capabilities, and future development projects. Mariners and other concerned parties are encouraged to comment by 06 February 2009. Any interested company or individual wishing to provide comments or participate in a user survey should contact LTJG Russell Newkirk via email at Russell.E.Newkirk@uscg.mil or by mail at: U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Willow, Pier 2 Naval Station, Newport, RI 02841 Attn: LTJG Russell Newkirk.

Obstructions Reported, MA and NY:
Also from the 1st District LNM 02:

  1. Hazard to navigation - The Coast Guard has received a report of a submerged obstruction in the vicinity of the Admiral Hill Yacht Club in approx. Position 42-23.5N 071-03W.
    • Neponset River hazard to navigation - The Coast Guard has received a report of an 31 ft white cabin cruiser, M/V ELAN, hard aground in the vicinity of the mouth of Neponset River at position 42-17.87N 071-02.35W.
    • The Coast Guard has received multiple reports of an underwater object. As a result, the Coast Guard has established a five hundred yard radius Safety Zone at position 42deg24'27"N 070deg27'14"W. Entry into the Safety Zone must be requested from the Captain of the Port Boston. In addition, all vessels and persons are prohibited from anchoring, diving, dredging, dumping, fishing, trawling, laying cable or conducting salvage operations in this zone except as authorized by the Captain of the Port Boston. Permission to conduct these activities may be requested from the Captain of the Port Boston via VHF channel 16 or via phone at 617-223-3201.
    • vThe Coast Guard has received a report of an unknown submerged object in the Harlem River in vicinity of position 40-50.3N 073-55.9W – all vessels are requested to proceed with caution and report sightings to the US Coast Guard. Additional information regarding debris in NY Harbor can be directed to the US Army Corps of Engineers at 201-333-1170.

 
General Announcements:
From the latest LNMs:
LONG RANGE IDENTIFICATION AND TRACKING
The USCG Navigation Center (Navcen) announces the operation of the long range identification and tracking (lrit) business help desk. The lrit business help desk will monitor lrit systems and process inquires from the public and USCG partners. For more detailed information regarding U.S. lrit rulemaking, please refer to the lrit final rule, published in the federal register, department of homeland security, 33 CFR part 169, on Tuesday, April 29th, 2008, or visit the lrit business helpdesk section of the navigation center website at http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/ the lrit business help desk phone number Is: 703-313-5788 or 866-944-lrit (5748).

NATIONAL OCEAN SERVICE NAUTICAL CHARTS PROPOSALS

  1. NOAA’s National Ocean Service is evaluating specific features on nautical charts for their importance to marine navigation. The goal is to improve clarity and ease of use. To achieve this, NOAA’s National Ocean Service is proposing the removal of:

               • Tide tables
               • Tables of small craft facilities
               Both of these tables will be removed from the following charts:
               11302 11303 11306 11308 11314 11315 11319 11322 11326 11331
               11347 11348 11350 11354 11355 11365 11367 11370 11372 11374
               11378 11385 11390 11393 11402 11404 11411 11425 11427 11428
               11430 11432 11433 11446 11449 11451 11453 11464 11465 11467
               11472 11485 11489 11491 11507 11514 11515 11518 11534 11541
               11553 12205 12206 12237 12285 12316 12324 12352 12364 12372
               13229 13274 18423 18445 18447 18545 18546 18547 18548 18652
               18661 18662 18687
               Tidal information will continue to be available at http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov

    • NOAA’s National Ocean Service is evaluating specific features on nautical charts for their importance to marine navigation. The goal is to improve clarity and ease of use. To achieve this, NOAA’s National Ocean Service is proposing the removal of State Plane grid intersection tick marks from all nautical charts. The State Plane coordinate system was established by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey in 1933 to provide a common reference system for surveyors and cartographers.  State plane ticks marks are not necessary for marine navigation. This change is expected to affect new chart editions commencing in 2009.

These proposed changes will be advertised on The Office of Coast Survey website under “Latest News” http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov . Comments about these changes may be sent to NOAA through the form at http://ocsdata.ncd.noaa.gov/idrs/inquiry.aspx before February 20, 2009.

New York/New Jersey Waterway Analysis:
If your boating takes place in this congested area, you may want to comment to the Coast Guard regarding the following: The Coast Guard is conducting a Waterway Analysis and Management System (WAMS) review of New York Upper Bay to include the Bay Ridge Channel, Buttermilk Channel, New Jersey Pierhead Channel, Bayonne Terminal Channel, Claremont Terminal Channel, and National Dock Channel. Mariners and other concerned parties are invited to comment on the aids to navigation in these waterways. Any comments or recommended changes to aids to navigation in these waterways should be received no later than 15 February 2009 to be considered. Send comments to: Commanding Officer, USCGC JUNIPER (WLB-201) NAVSTA Pier 2 Newport, RI 02841, ATTN: ENS Beau Belanger (401)841-6953, email Beau.C.Belanger@uscg.mil.

Barnegat Bridge, NJICW Mile 14.1, Schedule Change:
This involves closure during winter months with openings on request with advance notice. From the 1st District LNM 02: Effective on January 29, 2009, mariners are advised that the Coast Guard is changing the drawbridge operation regulations of the S37 Bridge, at ICW mile 14.1, across Barnegat Bay at Seaside Heights, NJ. The final rule will allow the drawbridge to operate on an advance notice basis during specific times of the year. The changes will result in more efficient use of the bridge during months of infrequent transit. A copy of Public Notice 5- 1134, which describes the changes in detail, can be obtained by writing to the address above or by calling (757) 398-6587.

Chesapeake Bay Dredging (MD):
From the USCG 5th District LNM 03:

  1. Baltimore Area: The Great Lakes Dredge and Drydock Co. Clamshell Dredges GL54 and GL55 will be conducting dredging operations in the Cutoff Angle and Craighill Entrance Channel from 15 January through 01 March, 2009. Tugs and scows will transport dredged material to the Poplar Island site. The dredges will monitor VHF-FM Ch 13, 16 and 10 and all traffic is requested to contact the dredge 30 minutes prior to expected time of passage. Under no circumstances should transiting vessel attempt to pass between the towing tug and scows while underway.
    • Ft. Howard: The Dredge DIGGER BARGE 1 will be conducting dredging operations in the vicinity of Shallow Creek, near Fort Howard, from 20 January through 15 February, 2009. Tugs and scows will transport dredged material to the Hart-Miller Island site. The dredges will monitor VHF-FM Ch 13, 16 and 08.
    • Rockhold Creek:The Southwind Construction Corp. Dredges JENNI LEA II and PROUD MARY will be conducting dredging operations in Herring Bay/Rockhold Creek near Herrington Harbor Marina, Deale, MD from 19 January through 09 February, 2009. The dredges will monitor VHF-FM Ch 13 ,16 and 79 (and Dredge Jenni Lea Cellular Phone: (812) 480-6498). A floating rubber and submerged polyethylene pipeline associated with dredging operation will traverse from Federal Channel of Herring Bay to upland Disposal Site near Deale, Maryland.

Lower Chesapeake Unexploded Ordinance Clean-up:
The 5th District LNM 03 states that  beginning 19 January, 2009, Shaw Environmental Inc., under contract with the Army Corps of Engineers, will commence the clean up and destruction of unexploded ordinance on the Plum Tree Island Wildlife Refuge. A Danger Zone will be established that will encompass portions of the Chesapeake Bay and Back River up to three quarters of a mile from the detonation area when necessary. Mariners are advised to contact the U.S. Coast Guard on VHF-FM Channel 16 for any questions or to report any sighting of unexploded ordinance in this vicinity. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers may be contacted at 757-201-7663.

Hampton Roads Construction:
From the 5th District LNM 03: Weeks Marine is conducting construction operations in the Middle Ground area south of Newport News Channel Lighted Buoy 9. Construction barges WEEKS 271and WEEKS 96 will be anchored at approximate position 36-57-09N, 076-23-35W. Anchor wires will span from the barges across the Middle Ground charted channel for Shallow Draft Vessels. Anchor points will be marked with yellow anchor buoys and flashing yellow lights. The barges may be contacted on VHF-FM Channels 06, 13 and 16. Mariners are advised to transit this area with caution and avoid transiting between the barge and anchor buoys. Additional information is available by contacting Weeks Marine at 757-289-2177.

Atlantic ICW and Vicinity Dredging:
From the USCG 5th District LNM 02:
1. Hammocks Beach State Park (off the ICW): The Southwind Construction Corp. Dredge GAIL RENA will be conducting dredging operations in Hammocks Beach State Park within the confines of the Cow Creek Channel off the ICW to Bear Island from 24 January until 31 March, 2009. The dredge will monitor VHF-FM Channels 13, 16 and 79. A floating rubber and submerged polyethylene pipeline associated with dredging operation will traverse from Cow Creek Channel at the intersection with Bear Island to the ICW then to the USACE Island Disposal Site. The Pipeline and vessels will be visibly lighted and marked according to Coast Guard regulations.
2. Lockwoods Folly Inlet Crossing Area: The Southwind Construction Corp. Dredge WILCO will be conducting dredging operations in the vicinity of Lockwoods Folly Inlet and Lockwoods Folly River from 19 January until 25 February, 2009. The dredge will monitor VHF-FM Channels 13 and 16. A floating and submerged pipeline associated with dredging operation will traverse from Cape Fear to Little River Light 33 to Holden Beach via ICW river bank.
3. Cape Fear River Entrance (off the ICW): The Great Lakes Dredging and Drydock Hopper Dredge PADRE ISLAND will be conducting dredging operations in the vicinity of Baldhead Shoal Channel from 10 January until 08 February, 2009. Dredged material will be pumped to the Old Baldhead Shoal Channel Disposal area. The dredge will monitor VHF-FM Channels 13 and 16.

Florida Inlets: Shoaling Reported:
From the USCG 7th District LNM 02, 2009:
1. Ponce Inlet: Shoaling has been reported in the vicinity of Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighted Buoy 9. Aid has been temporaily relocated to approximate position 29-04-12.590N 080-55-13.199W to mark best water. All mariners are urged to transit the area with caution.
2. St. Lucie Inlet:Shoaling has been reported between St Lucie Inlet Buoy 6 and St Lucie Inlet Buoy 7. All mariners are advised to transit the area with caution.

St. Lucie River Shoaling:
The 7th District LNM 03 states that St Lucie River Daybeacon 6 has deteriorated and has been cut at the river bottom, removal not possible due to adverse weather and river bottom conditions. The single pile steel (SPS) beam is buried under this sandy shoaling area at approximate position 27-09-54.638N 080-11-21.964W. St Lucie River Daybeacon 6 has been replaced with a buoy to marked the channel. All mariners are advised that shoaling is proceeding at a rapid pace and proceeding southward. Dredging of the area is scheduled for September 2009. Shoaling also has been reported between St Lucie River Buoy 2 and St Lucie River Buoy 3. All mariners are advised to transit the area with caution. For further information and updates please contact BMC Henry J. Audette at (772) 465-2457.

Lake Okeechobee Warning Reminder:
From the 7th District LNM 03: Due to extremely restricted channel depths in Lake Okeechobee, mariners are strongly advised that the following should be taken in consideration whether transiting the Lake or stopping for recreational activities such as fishing. Mariners are warned not to leave the Route 1 Channel, to absolutely avoid uncharted waters and be aware that depths could change without notice. Route 2, known as the Rim Channel is closed to navigation with depth of 0.44 feet or less.

Stuart Mooring Field Reopens:
The popular mooring field operated in Stuart, Florida on the St. Lucie River, closed since last May, has now reopened according to a newspaper article. It is reported that it is now part of the Sunset Bay Marina and Anchorage (marina not yet complete, no anchoring). Rates are reported to be $12.95/night for up to 60 ft. length boats. Living aboard is reported to be permitted for up to 6 months, and moorings are available on a “first come first served” basis.
 
Florida Bridge Update: From the USCG 7th District LNM 01:           
            Sisters Creek Bridge, Mile 739.2: This bridge will be under repair until April 10, 2009. Between January 12 and April 10, 2009, one half of the channel will be blocked by a barge working on fender replacement on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday of each week, between 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
BB McCormick Bridge, JAX Beach, Channel Closures: The following is paraphrased from a USCG Jacksonville MSIB: The channel at the BB McCormick Bridge at Mile 747.5 will be closed for removal of the old bridge beginning on January 19 and ending on January 21, 2009, 12:00 p.m. till 12:00 a.m.; and beginning on January 21 and ending on February 6, 2009, Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m., with limited openings between 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. or for declared emergencies.
            Port Orange A1A Bridge (Mile 835.5): Vertical clearance will be reduced by 3 feet across one half of the channel due to painting. Dates: December 3, 2008-March 30, 2009.
            Sunny Isles Bridge (Mile 1078):  Also known as the NE 163rd St. Bridge, will be on single leaf operation at quarter past and three quarters past the hour, Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m., except federal holidays. Dates are Oct. 15, 2008 through March 27, 2009. Double leaf openings will be available with two hours notice. On Saturdays, Sundays and federal holidays, 10:00 a.m. till 6:00 p.m., both leaves will open at quarter past and three quarters past the hour. Both leaves are available on request at all other times.
Okeechobee Waterway, Mile 126.3:The Wilson Piggott Bridge will be under single leaf operation from August 18-Feb 28, 2008. A double leaf opening will require a 3 hour notice. The vertical clearance of the down span will be reduced by 5 feet. There will be one 8-hour closure to be announced.

DGPS in PR Off Air:
From the 7th District LNM 03: DGPS Site Isabela, PR has been granted off air/unusable time for PMS.
Unusable time authorized for the following date/time:
Primary: 27 January 2009 1400Z - 1600Z (0900 - 1100 EST)
Secondary: 28 January 2009 1400Z - 1600Z (0900 - 1100 EST)

This information is not to be used for navigation. Consult the latest charts and Local Notices to Mariners and use prudent seamanship. Conditions may change.  Any person or entity that uses this information in any way, as a condition of that use, agrees to waive and does waive and also hold authors harmless from any and all claims which may arise from or be related to that use.





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