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Old 24-02-2011, 00:36   #1
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A Foreigner on the ICW

A Korean friend is flying to New York next month to sea trial a 46-foot yacht. If all goes well he will take possession and sail it to Florida, from where it will be freightered to Japan. He will sail it home from there.

He has limited English and has deputized me to seek answers to questions he has about sailing in the US -- a bit risky since I am not an American.

What sort of accreditation, if any, does a foreigner need to sail in US waters or specifically on the ICW? I have never heard of such a requirement, but really don't know. Under the Korean system, he and his wife are both accredited to handle craft up to 20 tons, but he is unsure if this would be recognized in the US.

Also, insurance is a quandary. Is it a legal requirement on the ICW? Also, what sort of coverage are marinas likely to require to overnight? Would anyone care to suggest a package that will get him to Florida with the fewest worries?

Any other legal/bureaucratic problems he might encounter?

Cheers and thanks in advance.
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Old 24-02-2011, 03:54   #2
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

As far my experience goes, for just over nite at a marina I have never been asked to show ins No operaters lic required in us waters for pleasure boat... easy
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Old 24-02-2011, 03:55   #3
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

I don't think there are any required qualifications. Certainly the certification should be adequate, in any case. Insurance is not mandatory, but is certainly a good idea, and should be reasonably inexpensive for coverage in the ICW. Marinas may require insurance. It's up to the marina.

I't a beautiful trip - I've done it a number of times, but it is time consuming. If your friends are in a hurry, coastal passages of a day or two at a time can make it much faster.

Also, towing insurance might be a good idea for a new-to-the-skipper boat in the ICW. It's relatively inexpensive, and nuisance groundings are common in the ICW. Although it's well marked and carries plenty of water, some stretches are narrow and it's easy to get distracted long enought to stick your keel in the mud.

As a starting point, check out Boat US for towing insurance and other coverage, altough there are lots of options for insurance.
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Old 24-02-2011, 05:05   #4
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

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Originally Posted by Play Actor View Post
I don't think there are any required qualifications. Certainly the certification should be adequate, in any case. Insurance is not mandatory, but is certainly a good idea, and should be reasonably inexpensive for coverage in the ICW. Marinas may require insurance. It's up to the marina.

I't a beautiful trip - I've done it a number of times, but it is time consuming. If your friends are in a hurry, coastal passages of a day or two at a time can make it much faster.

Also, towing insurance might be a good idea for a new-to-the-skipper boat in the ICW. It's relatively inexpensive, and nuisance groundings are common in the ICW. Although it's well marked and carries plenty of water, some stretches are narrow and it's easy to get distracted long enought to stick your keel in the mud.

As a starting point, check out Boat US for towing insurance and other coverage, altough there are lots of options for insurance.
+1 on the towing insurance. Best investment you could ever make. Florida waters seem to have special magnetic rays which suck sailboat keels onto shoals no matter how careful you are.
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Old 24-02-2011, 05:28   #5
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

North Korean or South? If North, how big is his camera.
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Old 24-02-2011, 05:28   #6
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

A 46' "sailing" yacht is highly likely to have a mast TALLER than the ICW's 64' bridge height. (Julia Tuttle Causeway in S Fl is much lower)

Also, with less commercial traffic, the ICW is not maintained to the depth that It used to be. Many areas are for 5' draft boats or less! MOST, is for no more than 6' draft, and even then, you will go aground on occasion.

If these issues are deal breakers... You can go offshore, and pull in on occasion if needed. Most commonly used inlets that are dredged to considerable depths, and many have dockage before the first fixed span bridge. You will have to research this however.

Best of luck, Mark
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Old 24-02-2011, 05:36   #7
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

If you question means does he have to clear in with Homeland Security every time the boat moves, then I dont think he has to as its just a sea trial. He doesnt already own the boat.
If he owns it then he must call Homeland Security every time the boat moves.
But I dont know how strictly its enforced.
I'll find out in a year or so.


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Old 24-02-2011, 05:47   #8
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pirate Re: A foreigner on the ICW

During my time in the States 04/5 I never had to clear in out or report any of my movements up and down the ICW till I sailed for Europe.. but then I don't know S.Korea's status with the DHS or how its citizens are regarded.. was usually assumed to be an American.. till I opened my mouth... then folks thought I was S.African or an.... Aussie.....
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Old 24-02-2011, 06:04   #9
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

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Originally Posted by jimbim View Post
A Korean friend is flying to New York next month to sea trial a 46-foot yacht. If all goes well he will take possession and sail it to Florida, from where it will be freightered to Japan. He will sail it home from there.
What sort of accreditation, if any, does a foreigner need to sail in US waters or specifically on the ICW? I have never heard of such a requirement, but really don't know.
He/they will not need any accreditation to sail the ICW or coastal waters of the USA.

Quote:
Also, insurance is a quandary. Is it a legal requirement on the ICW?
No, there is no legal requirement to have insurance, unless he has borrowed money to purchase the boat, in which case the lender usually requires insurance. Liability insurance can usually be purchased for about $100, and that might be a very good idea.

Quote:
Also, what sort of coverage are marinas likely to require to overnight? Would anyone care to suggest a package that will get him to Florida with the fewest worries?
Some marinas might ask for proof of insurance, but for a simple overnight stay, most do not. After 12 trips either up or down the ICW, I've been asked for insurance once. The previous suggestions about Boat/US towing membership are very good. He can become a member of Boat/US for about $150/year, and that will give him free towing and "soft-ungrounding" services all along the way. Be sure he asks for the "unlimited" option. Also, the towing membership is a separate product from actual insurance, which Boat/US also sells. Don't confuse one with the other.

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Any other legal/bureaucratic problems he might encounter?
Others will have to speak to the Homeland Security issues. I don't know what those are.

Compliance with holding tank and waste discharge requirements are sometimes enforced along the ICW, especially in Florida. If by chance he gets boarded by the USCG (rare, but possible), he will need to show compliance with their equipment requirements for recreational boats of that size:

Federal Requirements

Also, if he plans to cruise through draw bridges, it is very helpful if he can speak enough English on a VHF radio to arrange openings. Not a requirement, but helpful.

Please tell your friend that any interaction with government officials while sailing along the ICW is statistically very rare, and he should worry more about bridge heights, tides and shallow spots.

Someone asked how high is the mast? That height will determine how much they can stay inside the ICW. If it's 65' or taller, then they will be forced to spend most of the trip in the ocean, hopping along the coast and returning through inlets to harbors for rest, reprovision or weather delays.
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Old 24-02-2011, 06:13   #10
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

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Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
If you question means does he have to clear in with Homeland Security every time the boat moves, then I dont think he has to as its just a sea trial. He doesnt already own the boat.
If he owns it then he must call Homeland Security every time the boat moves.
But I dont know how strictly its enforced.
I'll find out in a year or so.
I helped an Australian fellow move his boat down the intercoastal a few years ago and yes, there is a requirement to notify the authorities when the boat moves. We were able to get permission once to travel from South Carolina to Miami because we were only stopping to sleep. If you stay in one place for a while then you have to notify them of your next move. Easy, just a phone call.
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Old 24-02-2011, 06:31   #11
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

You didn't say if the boat is flagged Korean yet. If the boat is foreign flagged you can get a Cruising Permit for around $30 that allows the vessel to stay up to a year in US waters. You are required to check in via VHF periodically as you move between harbours.

The lack of English language skills might be an issue. He may want to pick up a copy of "English for Cruisers" by that famous Korean author whose name escapes me at the moment.
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Old 24-02-2011, 06:41   #12
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

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Also, towing insurance might be a good idea for a new-to-the-skipper boat in the ICW.
Good point! There are enough shallow areas along the ICW to make this a real concern.
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Old 24-02-2011, 06:58   #13
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

Is there a broker involved? If so, I would negotiate that getting the boat to the freighter is part of the transaction -- perhaps even making the final payment and transferring title only as the freighter's slings are attached and the shipper's insurance takes over.

This would avoid all sorts of paperwork, tax, and insurance questions that are much easier for the broker to solve than for your friend. The broker is in this business and deals with it everyday.

The broker might even be willing to help your friend take the boat down the the Florida coast for no charge - or know a friend who would do it. This is a nice trip in the spring. Selling a 46ft sailboat in Florida is not easy these days so the broker is highly motivated to close the sale. Just make sure that your friend has held back some of the money (or put it in escrow) until he is fully satisfied.


Carl

It is extremely unlikely that this boat will fit under the ICW bridges. That's not a big problem as going down the Florida coast is quite easy with lots of inlets.
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Old 24-02-2011, 07:06   #14
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

+1 on the towing insurance, liability insurance and the ability to speak to the bridges. If he pays attention to the tides he should be able to carry six feet in the ICW. The marinas may or may not require insurance but the ICW can be a busy, busy waterway in spots. Things can go wrong in a hurry and a few bucks for insurance beats losing the boat.
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Old 24-02-2011, 08:36   #15
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Re: A foreigner on the ICW

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Is there a broker involved? If so, I would negotiate that getting the boat to the freighter is part of the transaction -- perhaps even making the final payment and transferring title only as the freighter's slings are attached and the shipper's insurance takes over.

This would avoid all sorts of paperwork, tax, and insurance questions that are much easier for the broker to solve than for your friend. The broker is in this business and deals with it everyday.
Second that idea!! +2
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