Iit also says on that page (posted on link above) that they stopped requiring licenses in 1996 for boats that are going to be operated domesticly and within 100 miles of shore.
Do I Need a Ship Radio Station License?
On October 26, 1996, the FCC released a Report and Order in WT Docket No. 96-82, FCC 96-421 (text
), eliminating the individual licensing requirement for voluntary ships operating domestically which are not required by law to carry a radio
. The paragraphs below describe how the rules affect the maritime public.
WHO NEEDS A SHIP STATION LICENSE?
You do not need a license to operate a marine VHF
, or EPIRBs aboard voluntary ships operating domestically. The terms "voluntary" and "domestic" are defined below. Although a license is no longer required for these ships, you may still obtain a license (and call sign) by following the procedures outlined in Section IV.
WHICH SHIPS ARE VOLUNTARY?
The term "voluntary ships" refers to ships that are not required by law to carry a radio. Generally, this term applies to recreation or pleasure craft. In any event, the term "voluntary ships" does not apply to the following:
WHAT IS DOMESTIC OPERATION?
- Cargo ships over 300 gross tons navigating in the open sea;
- Ships certified by the U.S. Coast Guard to carry more than 6 passengers for hire in the open sea or tidewaters of the U.S.;
- Power driven ships over 20 meters in length on navigable waterways;
- Ships of more than 100 gross tons certified by the U.S. Coast Guard to carry at least one passenger on navigable waterways;
- Tow boats of more than 7.8 meters in length on navigable waterways; and,
- Uninspected commercial fishing industry vessels required to carry a VHF radio.
Ships are considered as operating domestically when they do not travel to foreign ports
or do not transmit radio communications
to foreign stations. Sailing in international waters is permitted, so long as the previous conditions are met. If you travel to a foreign port (e.g., Canada
, British Virgin Islands) a license is required. Additionally, if you travel to a foreign port, you are required to have an operator permit
as described in Section III.