Crack down on abandoned-boat owners
This is a photo, taken Sunday, Oct. 14, of the most recent addition to the collection of derelict vessels on Crab Bank. This boat has been on Crab Bank for about a month and could still be fairly easily removed.
However, the longer it sits and deteriorates, the more difficult that will become. The S.C. registration number has been removed, as has the name.
There are numerous state and federal vessels that pass by this boat on an almost daily basis.
Past calls to the U.S. Coast Guard, S.C. Department of Natural Resources, S.C. Ocean and Coastal Resource Management and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have been met with the response that this is “out of our jurisdiction.”
The Marine Pollution Act of 1973 states that it is “illegal to discharge any plastic or floatable materials into inland, coastal or inshore waters.”
This boat owner has dumped 6,000 pounds of polyester resin and fiberglass, 600 square feet of Dacron, 2,000 pounds of lead, and an untold amount of fuel oil and holding-tank sewage into a protected bird sanctuary.
There should be a hull identification number inscribed in the transom as required by law, and I am sure DNR could track down the owner through its computer records.
Our enforcement agencies need to step up to the plate.