New Laws for Long, Older Vessels Encourage Owner Responsibility, Reduce Financial Impacts to Public
|Targeted News Service|
With the goal of avoiding costly taxpayer-funded clean-up of large sunken vessels and their contamination of public waterways, starting today a new state law requires owners to have insurance for vessels 65 feet or longer and 40 years or older.
The new law, approved by the state legislature and announced today by the
"In recent years, the public has paid millions of dollars for hauling, cleaning up pollution and disposing of older, larger vessels that have sunk and contaminated the public's aquatic lands," said DNR's aquatic resources manager
Marine survey and proof of insurance before sale of vessel
The new law affects both seller and buyer of a vessel:
The seller of a vessel more than 65 feet in length and 40 years or older must provide the buyer with marine survey inspection information before they transfer the title, and the seller must see proof that the buyer has secured marine insurance coverage for the vessel.
A buyer of a longer old vessel must secure marine insurance and provide proof of coverage to the seller, and either the
Potential consequences if buyer doesn't comply
A seller who chooses to finalize a sale with a buyer who has not provided proof of a marine insurance policy, assumes secondary liability for the vessel if the vessel is later abandoned by the buyer or becomes derelict prior to a later ownership sale. It is a misdemeanor for a buyer who fails to secure and maintain the minimum marine insurance coverage. But most importantly, they will incur liability for the vessel if it becomes damaged, derelict or abandoned. In addition, their moorage facility may cancel their moorage agreement for noncompliance.
More detail about new vessel inspection and new marine inspection requirements
DNR's website www.dnr.wa.gov has a Long Vessel Inspection and Insurance webpage with more details about the new requirements. The laws about vessel inspection requirements, effective
DNR: Steward of state-owned aquatic lands
The 2.6 million acres of state-owned aquatic lands (mostly submerged) are a public trust, managed and protected by DNR for the people of
DNR's Derelict Vessel Removal Program is the state's key mechanism to address the problem of derelict or abandoned vessels in
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