Regulated Navigation Area; San Pedro Bay, CA

Summary

This rule restricts vessel movement in Commercial Anchorage G and expands the Regulated Navigation Area at the approach to Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor, California and prescribes certain vessel operating requirements for vessels operating in that area. The rule is a proactive prevention measure to enhance navigation safety in the approach to and departure from this heavily transited area. This rule does not change existing regulations associated with the pilot areas.

Full text

summary: This rule restricts vessel movement in Commercial Anchorage G 
and expands the Regulated Navigation Area at the approach to Los 
Angeles/Long Beach Harbor, California and prescribes certain vessel 
operating requirements for vessels operating in that area. The rule is 
a proactive prevention measure to enhance navigation safety in the 
approach to and departure from this heavily transited area. This rule 
does not change existing regulations associated with the pilot areas.

effective date: March 11, 1994.

for further information contact: Lieutenant Scott Pisel, Eleventh Coast 
Guard District, Aids to Navigation and Waterways Management Branch, 501 
West Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90822-5399, telephone (310) 980-4300 
ext. 501.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Drafting Information

    The principal persons involved in drafting this document are 
Commander Michael Haucke, Project Manager, and Lieutenant Commander 
Craig Juckniess, Project Counsel.

Regulatory History

    On November 26, 1993, the Coast Guard published a notice of 
proposed rulemaking entitled Regulated Navigation Area; San Pedro Bay, 
CA in the Federal Register (58 FR 62300-02). The Coast Guard received 
one letter commenting on the proposal. A public hearing was not 
requested and one was not held.

Background and Purpose

    The combined harbor of Los Angeles and Long Beach is the largest 
shipping complex in the United States. Since 1980, over 7,000 vessels 
have called on the port annually, equalling over 14,000 transits of the 
regulated navigation area. During times of heavy traffic, incoming 
traffic in the morning and outgoing traffic in the evening, large ships 
may be closer than one minute apart when moving through the bottleneck 
of the two breakwater harbor entrances or gates. To prevent maritime 
accidents, this rule will restrict vessel movement in Commercial 
Anchorage G and expand the regulated navigation area to ensure maritime 
safety through better regulation of vessel movements in the prescribed 
area.
    This regulated navigation area contains two pilot areas, a 
restricted navigation area and a precautionary area. All are marked on 
navigational charts.
    The now disbanded Los Angeles/Long Beach Port and Navigational 
Safety Committee, consisting of Long Beach, Los Angeles and Navy 
Pilots; Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach; dry cargo vessel 
operators; the tanker industry; the towing industry; and the U.S. Navy 
and Coast Guard, worked to minimize risk, reduce close calls, and 
prevent collisions in San Pedro Bay. After the EXXON VALDEZ grounding 
in 1989, the Committee accelerated its work to improve navigational 
safety and focused specifically on San Pedro Bay. The Committee 
concluded that a larger regulated navigation area, better organization, 
and stricter regulation of incoming and outgoing vessel traffic was 
needed to prevent accidents.
    Pursuant to the State of California Oil Spill Prevention, 
Abatement, and Removal Act of 1990, the Long Beach/Los Angeles Harbor 
Safety Committee was created. This new committee, with representatives 
from the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, local pilots, tank vessel 
operators, dry cargo vessel operators, towing industry, a local 
environmental representative, Los Angeles Fisherman's Association, a 
maritime labor representative, and the State of California, agreed that 
better regulation of vessel movements in the prescribed area would 
increase navigation safety.

Discussion of Comments and Changes

    One letter was received commenting on the proposed rule, which 
addressed two different areas of concern. The commenter first suggested 
altering the description of vessel categories subject to the operating 
requirements of Anchorage G and the San Pedro Bay Regulated Navigation 
Area to include towing vessels only while engaged in towing. This 
clarification is appropriate and is reflected in the final rule.
    The commenter's second concern was the prohibition on vessels 
transiting the pilot areas, Anchorage G, and the waters between 
Commercial Anchorage G and the Middle Breakwater. A primary purpose of 
this rule is to reduce the volume of vessel traffic, and to regulate 
operating conditions, within the Regulated Navigation Area in order to 
facilitate the safe navigation of large vessels entering and departing 
the Los Angeles and Long Beach Harbors. The category of towing vessels 
excepted from the prohibition against entering the waters between 
Anchorage G and the Middle Breakwater has been expanded to include 
vessels ``engaged in towing vessels to or from Commercial Anchorage G, 
or to or from the waters between Commercial Anchorage G and the Middle 
Breakwater.'' The remaining restrictions on vessel movement within 
these areas are retained as proposed.

Regulatory Evaluation

    This rule is not a significant regulatory action under Executive 
Order 12866 and is not significant under the Department of 
Transportation regulatory policies and procedures (44 FR 11040; 
February 26, 1979). The Coast Guard expects the economic impact of this 
rule to be so minimal that a Regulatory Evaluation is unnecessary.

Small Entities

    The impact of this rule is minimal, therefore, the Coast Guard 
Certifies under section 605(b) of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 
U.S.C. 601 et seq.), that this final rule will not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

Collection of Information

    This rule contains no collection of information requirements under 
the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

Federalism

    The Coast Guard has analyzed this rule under the principles and 
criteria contained in Executive Order 12612 and has determined that it 
does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the 
preparation of a Federalism Assessment.

Environment

    The Coast Guard has considered the environmental impact of this 
rule and concluded that, under section 2.B.2 of Commandant Instruction 
M16475.1B, it will have no environmental impact and it is categorically 
excluded from further environmental documentation.

List of Subjects

33 CFR Part 110

    Anchorage grounds.

33 CFR Part 165

    Harbors, Marine safety, Navigation (water), Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Security measures, Waterways.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends 33 
CFR parts 110 and 165 as follows:

PART 110--[AMENDED]

    1. The authority citation for part 110 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 33 U.S.C. 471, 2030, 2035 and 2071; 49 CFR 1.46 and 
33 CFR 1.05-1(g). Section 110.1a and each section listed in 110.1a 
is also issued under 33 U.S.C. 1223 and 1231.


    2. Section 110.214 is amended by adding paragraph (a)(7)(iii) to 
read as follows:


Sec. 110.214  Los Angeles and Long Beach Harbors, California.

    (a) * * *
    (7) * * *
    (iii) Vessels 30 meters or over in length, towing vessels of 8 
meters or over in length engaged in towing, every vessel of 100 gross 
tons and upward carrying one or more passengers for hire while 
navigating, and each dredge and floating plant engaged in operations 
shall not enter anchorage G unless:
    (A) In an emergency;
    (B) Proceeding to anchor in or departing from Commercial Anchorage 
G;
    (C) Standing by with confirmed pilot boarding arrangements; or,
    (D) Engaged in towing vessels to or from Commercial Anchorage G.
* * * * *

PART 165--[AMENDED]

    3. The authority citation for part 165 continues to read as 
follows:


    Authority: 33 U.S.C. 1231; 50 U.S.C. 191; 33 CFR 1.05-1(g), 
6.04-1, 6.04-6, and 160.5, 49 CFR 1.46.


    4. Section 165.1109 is revised to read as follows:


Sec. 165.1109  San Pedro Bay, California--Regulated navigation area.

    (a) Location. The following is a regulated navigation area: The 
water area of San Pedro Bay encompassed by the following geographic 
coordinates:
    From Point Fermin Light (33 deg.42'18'' N, 118 deg.17'36'' W) 
thence along the shoreline to the San Pedro Breakwater, thence along 
the San Pedro Breakwater and the Middle Breakwater (following the 
COLREGS Demarcation Lines) to Long Beach Channel Entrance Light ``2'' 
(33 deg.42'42'' N, 118 deg.14'42'' W), thence south southeast to 
33 deg.40'31'' N, 118 deg.08'42'' W; thence west to 33 deg.40'31'' N, 
118 deg.12'03'' W; thence west southwest to 33 deg.39'17'' N, 
118 deg.16'00'' W; thence northeast to 33 deg.40'06'' N, 
118 deg.17'38'' W; thence north to the point of origin.
[Datum: NAD 1983]
    (b) Pilot areas. There are two pilot areas within the regulated 
navigation area described in paragraph (a). They are defined as 
follows:
    (1) The Los Angeles Pilot Area is enclosed by a line beginning at 
Los Angeles Light (33 deg.42'30'' N, 118 deg.15'06'' W); thence 
easterly to Los Angeles Main Channel Entrance Light 2 (33 deg.42'42'' 
N, 118 deg.14'42'' W); thence southeasterly to 33 deg.41'36.2'' (N, 
118 deg.13'46.2'' W; thence southwest to 33 deg.41'13.9'' N, 
118 deg.14'55.4'' W; thence north to the point of origin.

[Datum: NAD 1983]
    (2) The Long Beach Pilot Area is enclosed by a line beginning at 
Long Beach Light (33 deg.43'24'' N, 118 deg.11'12'' W); thence easterly 
to Long Beach Channel Entrance Light 2 (33 deg.43'24'' N, 
118 deg.10'48'' W); thence southerly to 33 deg.42'09.1'' N, 
118 deg.10'26.2'' W; thence west to 33 deg.42'09.1'' N, 
118 deg.11'35.5'' W; thence northeasterly to the point of origin.

[Datum: NAD 1983]
    (c) Definitions. For the purposes of this section:
    (1) Floating plant--means any vessel, other than a vessel underway 
and making way, engaged in any construction, manufacturing, or 
exploration operation.
    (2) Vessel--means every description of watercraft, used or capable 
of being used as a means of transportation on water.
    (d) The following regulations apply to all vessels while operating 
within the regulated navigation area:
    (1) Los Angeles Pilot Area:
    (i) No vessel may enter the Los Angeles Pilot Area unless it is 
entering or departing the Los Angeles Main Channel via the Los Angeles 
Harbor Entrance (Angel's Gate).
    (ii) Vessels entering the Los Angeles Pilot Area shall pass 
directly through without stopping or loitering unless stopping is 
necessary to embark or disembark a pilot.
    (iii) Vessels shall leave Los Angeles Approach Lighted Bell Buoy 
``LA'' to port when entering and departing Los Angeles Main Channel;
    (2) Long Beach Pilot Area:
    (i) No vessel may enter the Long Beach Pilot Area unless it is 
entering or departing Long Beach Harbor Entrance (Queen's Gate).
    (ii) Every vessel entering the Long Beach Pilot Area shall pass 
directly thorugh without stopping or loitering unless stopping is 
necessary to embark or disembark a pilot.
    (iii) Every vessel shall leave Long Beach Approach Lighted Whistle 
Buoy ``LB'' to port when entering and departing Long Beach Channel and 
departing vessels shall pass across the southern boundary of the Long 
Beach Pilot Area.
    (e) The following regulations contained in paragraphs (e)(1) 
through (e)(4) apply to vessels 30 meters (approximately 98 feet) or 
over in length, towing vessels of 8 meters (approximately 26 feet) or 
over in length engaged in towing, vessels of 100 gross tons and upward 
carrying one or more passengers for hire while navigating, and each 
dredge and floating plant engaged in operations in the regulated 
navigation area:
    (1) Such vessel's speed shall not exceed 12 knots;
    (2) All verbal contact between such vessels shall be communicated 
in the English language. No such vessel may enter or transit within the 
regulated navigation area unless there is at least one person on the 
bridge immediately available to communicate with other vessels in the 
English language;
    (3) When such vessels in the regulated navigation area encounter 
meeting, crossing, or overtaking situations as defined by the 
International Regulations for Prevention of Collisions at Sea, 1972 (72 
COLREGS) the master, pilot or person in charge of each such vessel 
shall make verbal passing arrangements with the other over 
radiotelephone in addition to sound signal requirements of the 72 
COLREGS;
    (4) No such vessel may enter the waters between Commercial 
Anchorage G and the Middle Breakwater as defined by an area enclosed by 
a line beginning at Los Angeles Main Channel Entrance Light 2 
(33 deg.42'42'' N, 118 deg.14'42'' W); thence eastward along the middle 
breakwater to Long Beach Light (33 deg.43'24'' N, 118 deg.11'12'' W); 
thence south to 33 deg.43'05.3'' N, 118 deg.11'15.3'' W; thence 
westerly to 33 deg.43'05.3'' N, 118 deg.12'15.7'' W; thence 
southwesterly parallel to the breakwater to 33 deg.42'29.9'' N, 
118 deg.14'16.0'' W; thence to the point of origin, unless such vessel 
is:
    (i) In an emergency;
    (ii) Proceeding to anchor in or departing Commercial Anchorage G;
    (iii) Standing by with confirmed pilot boarding arrangements; or,
    (iv) Engaged in towing vessels to or from Commercial Anchorage G, 
or to or from the waters between Commercial Anchorage G and the Middle 
Breakwater.

    Dated: January 24, 1994.
R.D. Herr,
Rear Admiral, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander, Eleventh Coast Guard 
District.
[FR Doc. 94-3000 Filed 2-8-94; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-14-M  

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