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July 2, 2007 – PWC Report

July 2, 2007
Filed under Features

L.A. Port Restricts Boating Access
Not that you’d really want to ride there, but those that do will soon find certain areas of the Port of Los Angeles off limits without a port police-issued permit.
The new restrictions in the port are aimed at ensuring navigational safety for the large commercial vessels that use the port by reducing nonessential traffic.
“First and foremost, we are committed to making the Port of Los Angeles the safest port in the nation,” said Port Deputy Executive Director of Operations Capt. John Holmes. “To do this, we are taking steps to make sure that only vessels having business in commercial areas of our port are allowed access unless they request prior clearance.
Education Credited For PWC Accident Decline
A recent article in the Times Record of Fort Smith, Ark., credits education as a significant factor in the decline of PWC-related injuries over the past several years.
Accidents in the state began to decline following legislation passed in 1999 that restricted operator age, required PFD usage, demanded owners carry a minimum of $50,000 in liability insurance, and contained several provisions for congested areas, rules of the road-type guidelines, and no-wake restrictions. A subsequent law, passed in 2001, added the requirement of a boating safety course for those born after Jan. 1, 1986.
“Before we passed those laws … we were having a lot of accidents on (PWC) because most people just saw them as toys,” explained Bob Cushing, boating education coordinator for the Arkansas Fish and Game Commission. “But since we’ve encouraged people to understand they have to follow the rules … we’ve seen a change. The number of accidents has started to go down.” psb

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