We went to a meeting the other night to support the boating community. Actually it was a follow up meeting to the December meeting for which there are comments on the Boot Key Facebook Page in case you missed the basics. The short summary of the meeting is as follows:
After attending the meeting last night if felt an immense presence of smoke in my shorts and shook my head all the way to the boat in disbelief.
I don't even know where to begin to explain the long version. Nothing I could say would be anything other than my opinion.
- First to openly admit that you have no clue to the exact law you are writing tickets for missing registrations on documented boats and dinghies. They then referred all Documented Boats to the Coast Guard to find out what they needed to make sure they were legal. So... write tickets now and let the courts settle it!
- Then there is the dinghy light issue. Maybe a Ouija board or Rosetta Stone could help decipher their interpretation of what the Coast Guard said. So... write tickets now and let the courts settle it!
- On the 7mph dinghy dpeed you are at the mercy of their radar/plotter. At least with this you have a definitive number that can be right or wrong. But do you get undiputed proof that it is your dinghy?
- The Coast Guard must have done a good job with the flare number and identification as this was to the book and simple.
- My favorite was the small outboard internal tank issue. Seams you can bolt a 12 gallon tank to the floor of your dinghy, run a hose with all it's failure points to the motor and you do not need a fire extinguisher on the dinghy since it is not enclosed. But if you have a 3.5 with the internal tank you need a fire extinguisher because "it is not removable!"
So there you have it... the jist of the meeting. It's all about the dinghy! Not one word about fishing regulations while you are here in Florida!
But it wouldn't be a meeting without a personal agenda from someone.
Round about the cauldron go,
In the poisoned entrails throw.
Toad, that under cold stone
Days and nights has thirty-one
Sweltered venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i' th' charmèd pot.
Double, double toil and trouble,
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.
Two little creatures missing their hats seemed to cast their spell trying to condemn a boat in the eyes of others.
Live and Let Live.