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Old 10-03-2020, 14:58   #1
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mooring buoys Canada

Hi all not sure this is the right place for this question but giving it a try, I have a squatter's boat on my mooring buoy and can't find a legal way to get him off? help!
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Old 10-03-2020, 15:03   #2
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

Hmmm, good question. I assume you've talked to the person? What do they say?

Was the mooring properly marked with "PRIV", with your name, address and telephone number? If so, then you'd have some basis for talking to the local cops.
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Old 10-03-2020, 15:55   #3
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

I got a phone number but it seems to be message collection only as never is answered and I have left several messages and never gotten a reply. O and yes it is correctly marked and registered.
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Old 10-03-2020, 16:38   #4
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

FYI:

Suggest contacting the Ministry of Transport Canada as they have jurisdiction as to removing private moorings so likely have the authority for removing trespassing vessels from private moorings or could provide you with the proper agency contacts for enforcement.

For ports and harbours that are established and regulated under
federal legislation. For problem vessels and structures in these areas, the first point of contact is the port authority, the harbour commission or the agent managing the harbour

The Province has the jurisdiction to control access to provincial Crown aquatic land. The Land Act and the Trespass Act contain provisions for dealing with trespass on Crown land. Policies
are in place to support legislation and there is existing direction regarding trespass on Crown land (e.g. structures built without authorization). Those policies are applicable on Crown land covered by water however; the trespass policy is generic and does not provide specific direction
for dealing with what may appear to be problem vessels on provincial Crown aquatic land.

There are three federal agencies having a key role in the management of problem vessels and
structures.
 Transport Canada
 Coast Guard
Environment Canada and sometimes a fourth agency,
 Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Each agency has specific responsibilities but work within a collaborative framework to address matters related to problem vessels and structures.

https://www.ubcm.ca/assets/Whats~New...W_sept%209.pdf

Federal Role
Transport Canada is the lead agency for ensuring the integrity of navigable waters. The Navigable Waters Protection Program (NWPP) of Transport Canada administers the Navigable Waters Protection Act (NWPA). Part 2 of the NWPA deals with obstacles and obstructions to navigation. Should a problem vessel or structure be obstructing navigation then NWPP has the
legislative authority to order the owner to take action to address the obstruction. Should the owner not take action or fail to comply with an order by NWPP to remedy the situation then the NWPA gives the NWPP the authority to act. Actions of the NWPP include marking, securing
and/or removing the obstruction.
Whenever a problem vessel or structure is sunk, moored or anchored in a narrow channel or at the entrance to a marina in such a way, that it makes navigation over top of or around it, extremely difficult or impossible; the situation can be reported to NWPP during regular business
hours by calling 604-775-8867 or e-mail to pacnwp-penpac@tc.gc.ca. The complaint will be assigned to an NWP Officer for follow up.

4.0 Vessels and Structures not defined as Obstructions to Navigation

Addressing problem vessels or structures that do not present an obstruction to navigation or immediately threaten public safety or the environment creates the most complex situations. All levels of government are aware that there is public sensitivity towards perceived visual, environmental and safety impacts whenever a problem vessel or structure is reported. Addressing public concerns is challenged by jurisdictional roles and legal requirements and limited financial resources to meet public expectations. In instances where the problem vessel or structure does not pose an obstruction or an immediate risk to human safety or the environment, cooperative solutions are the best approach for successfully meeting public expectations.

Provincial Role
There is existing policy direction regarding trespass on Crown terrestrial land (e.g. structures built without authorization). However, this direction is not specific to what appear to be abandoned vessels or structures on Crown aquatic land. The person(s) responsible for the trespass is responsible for removal if ordered to do so by FLNRO. FLNRO will assess each
situation before taking action and will always discuss the situation with Transport Canada.

4.2 Federal Role
Many of the problem vessels and structures of concern to local government and the public are not obstructions to navigation and therefore do not fall within the scope of Part 2 of the Navigable Waters Protection Act. The Receiver of Wreck is a position currently residing within
Transport Canada. (Appendix B) Under Pat 7 of the Canada Shipping Act, the Receiver has the ability to authorize the disposition of wreck that has a value of less than $5,000.00. Persons wishing to remove abandoned wreck having a value of less than $5,000.00 may seek permission from the Receiver of Wreck to take possession of the wreck and to dispose of it in accordance with any other applicable statue or regulation (e.g. Waste Management Regulations or local government Bylaws). It has been observed that it is rare that wreck valued over $5,000.00 is brought to the attention of the Receiver of Wreck. In those situations, the wreck is usually reclaimed by the owner (or the owner’s insurer) or collected by a commercial interest
seeking to gain profit from the salvage of wreck.

Mooring Buoys
A moored vessel has to comply with the Transport Canada (TC) mooring buoy policy and the Private Buoy Regulations of the Canada Shipping Act 2001. If the vessel obstructs navigation or does not comply with other elements of the policy the buoy is subject to removal pursuant to
the Private Buoy Regulations of the CSA 2001 (the vessel is ancillary to the buoy in this case) TC considers a mooring buoy a “work” for the purposes of Part 1 of the NWPA. However, TC has a national policy for the installation of mooring buoys whereby an individual may place a mooring buoy for their own use without the need for an NWPA approval. The policy is
contingent upon the conditions that the buoy does not interfere with navigation and meets all the criteria of the policy and the regulations, with respect to size, shape color and marking of the buoy. For more information on TC’s mooring buoy policy or the Private Buoy Regulations
contact the Navigable Waters Protection Program of TC.
Generally, FLNRO does not require members of the public to acquire authorization to locate a mooring buoy on Crown aquatic land for personal use as long as it conforms to the TC and NWPA criteria mentioned above. FLNRO does require commercial/industrial users to obtain
provincial authorization to locate a mooring buoy and, there are requirements for authorization to install docks and wharves for personal and commercial/industrial use. FLNRO will become involved in situations where the positioning of a mooring buoy interferes with the interests of
others holding tenure on Crown land.


A further reference: https://www.leaguelaw.com/posts/regu...ivate-mooring/ Snipet therefrom:

. . .

"Many desirable bays have become congested with vessels whose owners store the vessel for longer than a “reasonable time, for a reasonable purpose,” impeding other’s use of the waterway, including upland property owners.

In closing, while writing this article I came across the following post in a boating blog: “In BC, the government told me they don’t give water lease for private moorings, so anyone is free to use any mooring they please, legally. I certainly do, after giving it a good shot of reverse to check it out”. This post highlights an interesting misunderstanding held by many people, and why the right of anchoring/mooring can at times be a paradox. Firstly, the Province does not issue leases for mooring buoys, but this does not mean that a mooring can be placed on Crown land (seabed) other than for a “reasonable time, for a reasonable purpose” without it being trespass. After all, that anchor or buoy, if left for an unreasonable time or an unreasonable purpose, is utilizing common property and depriving others of such use. Secondly, arguably that mooring buoy is the personal property of an individual, and attaching an unauthorized vessel to it is trespass to that person’s personal property. The paradox is that, at the same time, that buoy may be trespassing on Crown seabed. This begs the question – who is less in the wrong: the person trespassing on another’s buoy, or the owner of the buoy trespassing on public property? These are issues that can only be answered definitively once the courts have considered them."


Best be sure that your private mooring is in complete compliance with Canadian laws. Reference:

https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/...35/page-1.html


Private Buoy Regulations
SOR/99-335

CANADA SHIPPING ACT, 2001

Registration 1999-07-28

Private Buoy Regulations

P.C. 1999-1364 1999-07-28

His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Transport and the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, pursuant to sections 519 and 562Footnotea of the Canada Shipping Act, hereby makes the annexed Private Buoy Regulations.

Return to footnoteaR.S., c. 6 (3rd Supp.), s. 77

Interpretation
1 In these Regulations, private buoy means a buoy that is not owned by the federal government, a provincial government or a government agency.

Application
2 These Regulations apply to every private buoy other than private buoys used to mark fishing gear.

Placement Requirements
3 No person shall place in any Canadian waters a private buoy that interferes with or is likely to interfere with the navigation of any vessel, or that misleads or is likely to mislead the operator of any vessel.

4 (1) No person shall place a private buoy in any Canadian waters unless

(a) the part of the buoy that shows above the surface of the water is at least 15.25 cm wide and at least 30.5 cm high;

(b) the buoy displays, on opposite sides, the capital letters “PRIV” that are

(i) as large as is practical for the size of the buoy, and

(ii) white when the background colour is red, green or black;

(iii) black when the background colour is white or yellow;

(c) the buoy complies with the requirements set out in Canadian Aids to Navigation (TP 968) published by the Canadian Coast Guard in 1995, as amended from time to time;

(d) the buoy displays, in a conspicuous location and in a permanent and legible manner, the name, address and telephone number of its owner;

(e) the buoy is constructed and maintained in a manner and with materials that ensure that it remains in position and retains the characteristics specified in paragraphs (a) to (d); and

(f) the buoy’s anchor is constructed and maintained in a manner and with materials that ensure that it remains in position.

(2) The owner of a private buoy placed in any Canadian waters shall ensure that the information required by paragraph (1)(d) is accurate at all times.


5 If there is a need for increased visibility or better identification of a buoy for safety and the prevention of accidents, the Minister of Transport may order the owner of the buoy to modify it according to the requirements set out in the Procedures Manual for Design and Review of Short-range Aids to Navigation Systems (TP 9677), published in March 1989 by the Canadian Coast Guard, as amended from time to time.

SOR/2002-19, s. 1SOR/2010-27, s. 1
Previous Version
6 No person shall place in any Canadian waters a private buoy that has a light unless the light remains lit throughout the night and meets the requirements referred to in paragraph 4(1)(c).

Removal
7 The Minister of Transport may remove from any Canadian waters a private buoy that does not comply with these Regulations.

SOR/2010-27, s. 2
Previous Version
Repeal
8 [Repeal]

Coming into Force
9 These Regulations come into force on the date on which they are registered.


https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/...8.html#h-52144

Regulations
Marginal note:Regulations — Minister of Transport

136 (1) The Governor in Council may, on the recommendation of the Minister of Transport, make regulations

(a) establishing VTS Zones within Canadian waters or in a shipping safety control zone prescribed under the Arctic Waters Pollution Prevention Act;

(b) respecting the information to be provided and the procedures and practices to be followed by vessels that are about to enter, leave or proceed within a VTS Zone;

(c) respecting the conditions under which a clearance under section 126 is to be granted;

(d) defining the expression about to enter for the purpose of this Part;

(e) respecting aids to navigation in Canadian waters;

(f) regulating or prohibiting the navigation, anchoring, mooring or berthing of vessels for the purposes of promoting the safe and efficient navigation of vessels and protecting the public interest and the environment;

(g) respecting the safety of persons on Canadian waters for the purposes of sporting, recreational or public events or activities;

(h) specifying classes of persons, or appointing persons, to ensure compliance with regulations made under any of paragraphs (b) and (e) to (g) and specifying their powers and duties; and

(i) prescribing anything that may be prescribed under this Part.


Or you could just cast the trespassing boat adrift.

Once the manager of the marina at which I rent a slip once towed a trespassing boat from the slip I was renting for the season and took it a short distance away from the marina and just set it adrift; it floated away in a gentle breeze to God only knows where as it was nearing the end of twilight. I asked the marina manager what he would say to the owner of the trespassing boat when they returned and found their boat missing. He replied to my question with a simple question: "What boat?"
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Old 10-03-2020, 18:39   #5
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

Quote:
Originally Posted by meandmyhunny View Post
I got a phone number but it seems to be message collection only as never is answered and I have left several messages and never gotten a reply. O and yes it is correctly marked and registered.

So, have you contacted the local police? What did they say?
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Old 11-03-2020, 07:17   #6
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

I am curious as to the outcome of this situation. I hope the OP posts again. It seems to be a bit of conundrum, as Montanan's extensive response indicates:

Quote:
... Firstly, the Province does not issue leases for mooring buoys, but this does not mean that a mooring can be placed on Crown land (seabed) other than for a “reasonable time, for a reasonable purpose” without it being trespass. After all, that anchor or buoy, if left for an unreasonable time or an unreasonable purpose, is utilizing common property and depriving others of such use. Secondly, arguably that mooring buoy is the personal property of an individual, and attaching an unauthorized vessel to it is trespass to that person’s personal property. The paradox is that, at the same time, that buoy may be trespassing on Crown seabed. This begs the question – who is less in the wrong: the person trespassing on another’s buoy, or the owner of the buoy trespassing on public property? These are issues that can only be answered definitively once the courts have considered them."
I have a personal dislike of private moorings. I understand the attraction, and sometimes they are laid out respectfully, but all too often they seem to be placed in such a way that blocks others from using the anchorage, instead of being located off to the sides away from where boats could anchor. If you're going to drop a private mooring, don't place it in the middle of the anchorage. Put it off to one side, either further out or very close to shore.

And I am impressed that the OP actually has her/his mooring labeled as per the regulations. I don't think I've seen more than a 1/2 dozen in all my years on the water that were identified properly.
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Old 11-03-2020, 07:19   #7
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

You look to have done some home work on this, with out writing the same amount you did I to went around the circle. I does seem to be a bit of a quagmire, what I found was that you can't put a boat adrift, and I looked into having the boat declared abandon so I could take possession and do some thing about it, same quagmire. All said and done I did spend a bunch of money putting it in and now some one else has a boat on it and I can't get it off argggggggg!
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Old 11-03-2020, 09:00   #8
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

Jurisdictionally the matter appears to be not clear as to who is responsible for dealing with a "trespassing boat" on a private mooring. This is an incidence that probably doesn't arise a lot so the authorities are probably out of the know. Hence you get everyone just shrugging and pointing at the other. Then there is the real possibility that there is no explicit law that establishes that a boat can not tie to a private mooring without the permission of the private mooring owner. If there is no law explicitly stating that there is a "trespass" or some other inappropriate conduct or use then the authorities can not take action against the so called offending boat or owner. Something isn't illegal unless there is a law against such. Do you have a local or regional district attorney to which you could discuss the situation with and ask for a determination of law. We have City Attorneys, County District Attorneys and of course the State Attorney General. A State Attorney General can write an opinion of law which opinion becomes valid as a matter of law unless it is overturned as being invalid by a court of law, which is to say, the AG's opinion can be a basis for a law enforcement agent to take action and for a prosecutor to pursue charges and claims in court.

So I would suggest you determine what ordinance(s) may apply to misappropriation of use of personal private property and / or which may proscribe how a personal property owner may retake possession of their personal property. I believe one will find applicable laws regarding everyday recovery of personal private property [e.g, a vehicle, or other asset] which could be applied to a mooring. I kind of doubt one will find a specific law regarding who can and who can't tie up to a private mooring because the legislators have probably not addressed the subject matter.

You are faced with determining the who is in charge and what they are in charge of enforcing.

I suspect that you have the right to recover your personal private property which means you can attach your boat and detach another boat and then the authorities will have the right to impound a boat that is a drift as either a navigation hazard or an environmental hazard. That would be my approach, just bring the coast guard or LEOs with you when you decouple the offending boat and toss them that boat's mooring line and let them handle it like they do with similar adrift or dangerous unattended boats.

After decoupling the boat I would reconfigure the mooring so that it is no longer easy to attach a rode to it. For example lock a cover over the mooring eye that has to be removed in order to fasten a mooring line to the buoy.

In the alternative, it seems like it may be time to invoke what we call the vigilante code here in Montana and mark the boat with 3-7-77. Spray paint the hull. Google 3-7-77 and its history. That vigilante code is displayed on the badges of the State Troopers and the Highway Patrol and their emblems. It still has meaning in this neck of the woods.

Hmm, just wondering if the boat was to sink,would it make for a good mooring anchor? Heavy enough to stay lodged on the bottom when a rode was pulling with considerable force. Just a ponderance.
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Old 11-03-2020, 10:08   #9
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

Terrible when a mooring pennant chafes through at 2am on a moonless night on an outgoing tide....
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Old 11-03-2020, 10:20   #10
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

I think people should be cautious about advising simply to cut the offender loose. Yes, they're jerks for doing what they're doing, but their legal status is unclear. Cutting a boat loose, no matter who it is, is clearly a breach of law, and also an equally jerky thing to do.

I don't want to make any excuses for this bad behaviour, but maybe there is a reason why the offender grabbed the mooring and is uncommunicative. Health problems? Other personal crisis? Who knows...

They may just be jerks, but two wrongs never add up to a right.
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Old 11-03-2020, 10:36   #11
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

Cut the bas§§§§ loose! It’s your bouy...
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Old 11-03-2020, 10:39   #12
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

I only cut boats loose in Nflnd. The Newfies know how to take a joke.
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Old 11-03-2020, 10:43   #13
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

Image of a boat in San Francisco that was illegally anchored and which hull became marked by swimmers that routinely use the harbor. Image is titled: People Behaving Badly - Anchored.

A wrong does not impose a right and rights need to be enforced.

If it is your private mooring, your personal property, I would just reclaim it, even if that means hoisting the mooring and relocating it and then deliver the offending moored boat to the authorities turning over custody to them just as if it was a lost item that you found and are required to submit to authorities for safekeeping. Just tie the other boat up to the coast guard's or the Sheriff's boat or their public pier, and say Hi and Bye. They will deal with the wayward boat when you drop it off. It is not like they can say no to you turning over someone else's property to their custody. The law requires such custodianship of lost or abandoned property. And you damn well don't let them say no.

I equate this to the time when a person locked their bicycle to my locked bicycle when I was in class at University. I walked back to my home, returned the next day to find it still locked to my bicycle so I just cut their chain with bolt cutters and took their bicycle to the campus police and dropped it off with them to deal with and left to go gather my bicycle.

It be Nike time. Just Do It!

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Old 11-03-2020, 10:46   #14
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

I would inspect and replace/upgrade the necessary parts of your mooring system, as is recommended.

1) Remove the ball and leave a direct connection from pendant to chain.
2) Replace the chain with the appropriate amount and scope of oversized 3 strand nylon.
3) Upgrade your mooring to an appropriately sized new gen. anchor
4) Repair/replace any of the gear you pulled, then if you want to deploy a second mooring you can use that gear to do so.
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Old 11-03-2020, 10:49   #15
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Re: mooring buoys Canada

There are in fact a great many complications to this issue; to avoid writing a very long post explaining the details thus far I have not done so. This boat has been on my buoy for a very long time, over a year. Yes there are many possibilities as to what is going on for all I know the owner may have died, though I think his phone contract would have worn out at some point and I wouldn’t be able to leave messages. Marine law is very old witch I guess is why the various agencies point back and forth. One such law it that you can’t cut a boat loose, marina’s often have issues with abandon boats, not being able to collect the moorage and not being able to cut it free and not being able to declare it salvage and deal with it. I understand that mooring buoys can be debated as well but at the moment I’m just trying to see what advice others have for me, I’m at a loss so far.
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