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Old 30-03-2012, 14:11   #1
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Boat Impounded in Mexico

According to noonsite, a couple's boat was impounded in Isla Mujeres, Mexico because they did not have a Zarpe or departure clearance from the US. As we are heading there in less than a month this got my attention. This is draconian in my opinion.


http://www.noonsite.com/Members/sue/R2012-03-26-3
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Old 30-03-2012, 14:20   #2
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

Any other countries enforce this??
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Old 30-03-2012, 14:23   #3
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

What a bummer..
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Old 30-03-2012, 14:34   #4
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

Not funny for them, but from what I've read on CF it's funny that the U.S. influenced all our neighboring countries to require this to slow down the drug trade, but then don't require it of our self and also apparently make it hard to get.

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Old 30-03-2012, 14:39   #5
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

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Not funny for them, but from what I've read on CF it's funny that the U.S. influenced all our neighboring countries to require this to slow down the drug trade, but then don't require it of our self and also apparently make it hard to get.

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Old 30-03-2012, 14:42   #6
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

It's rarely practiced but it's common knowledge around here (bordering Mexico) that you're supposed to have a zarpe if you want to clear into Mexico. If you don't bring one you're violating Mexican law.

It's not like it's a hidden unknown requirement.
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Old 30-03-2012, 15:06   #7
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

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Any other countries enforce this??
Whether they do or not, I am guessing their lawcould change at any time (especially if your boat is really really nice ) so ..Maybe just good to get one prior to leaving no matter where you are going just in case...
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Old 30-03-2012, 15:27   #8
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

http://forms.cbp.gov/pdf/CBP_Form_1300.pdf

I had a friend sign one of these for me, he put his actual position in in the signature line....."engineering manager"
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Old 30-03-2012, 17:19   #9
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

Yes, it is rather sad that some common sense doesn't prevail when assumably this is only paperwork issue.

The lesson is always do the paperwork no matter how tedious it seems and no matter what bar room advice you get especially when it is along the lines of "they never check; it won't be a problem; my mate didn't worry and he was OK; it can be sorted out later; etc".

From my understanding, the USA is the odd one out here, most counties require you to complete a Zarpe / Port Clearance / Exit Statement / Departures Papers or such like when departing and it follows that the next country expects to see such paperwork to ensure that you are bona-fide and above board.
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Old 30-03-2012, 17:29   #10
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Okay, I understand the need to do the paperwork, but the punishment seems a bit STIFF to me. Impounding the boat? For 6 to 8 months? And it's not as if this requirement is written in stone, or clear. And it's not a safety thing like declaring weapons or something

I have read about a lot of people coming into isla without a zarpe, using a US marina receipt or whatever.

I STILL think this is draconian.
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Old 30-03-2012, 17:31   #11
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

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Any other countries enforce this??
Yes, they want to know that the vessel left the last port of call legally and not on the run but I don't know what the scale of penalties are.

On the surface, this one seems harsh, perhaps the mexican official involved had a tough time entering the states once or had a fight with his wife the night before. Once the ball starts rolling in these matters, egos often prevent a common sense intervention unfortunately.
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Old 30-03-2012, 17:48   #12
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

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.........? And it's not as if this requirement is written in stone, or clear. And it's not a safety thing like declaring weapons or something
Well it is SOP elsewhere as form of insurance that the vessel they are dealing with is going about its travels legally etc.
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I have read about a lot of people coming into isla without a zarpe, using a US marina receipt or whatever.
Again shortcuts may work but not always - bar room advice etc!

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Originally Posted by Svdestiny View Post
I STILL think this is draconian.
Totally agree that the penalty seems way over the top, 100%......but......part of cruising is discovering how others live, work and play. As for these folk (assuming the reported facts are accurate and complete), well they are on the tough end of a hard lesson on how the Mexican system works. This is a perfect example of where one can learn from another's misfortune.
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Old 30-03-2012, 17:57   #13
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

Part of the problem is that this zarpe requirement from the us is new. I just communicated with the head of the Mexico Marina owners association and she INSISTED that no zarpe or clearance form is needed from the US to enter Isla Mujeres. The US coast guard also states it is not necessary.
The bar room advice comment is unnessary and nasty, I found out about the need for a zarpe from others cruisers experiences. Many didn't know, and we're able to enter without the zarpe, evidently they are enforcing it more strongly now.
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Old 30-03-2012, 18:01   #14
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

It hasn't been SOP in the US. In fact I'd never heard of it until this post...
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Old 30-03-2012, 18:08   #15
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Re: Boat Impounded in Mexico

No worse than not complying to US Homeland security rules for foreigners where the USD 5,000 dollar fine is often inflicted for the least infringement such as moving your boat from one slip to another if you don't have a cruising permit and don't advise homeland security you are moving it.

Lesson being do your research and make sure you get it right and don't squeal if the bar room/ forum advice is somewhat off the mark.
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