[Federal Register Volume 67, Number 232 (Tuesday, December 3, 2002)]
[Pages 72018-72020]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 02-30619]



Coast Guard


Recreational Boating Safety Projects, Programs and Activities 
Funded Under Provisions of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st 
Century; Accounting of

AGENCY: Coast Guard, DOT.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: Subsection (c) of Section 7405 of the Transportation Equity 
Act for the 21st Century makes $5,000,000 available each of five fiscal 
years to the Secretary of Transportation for personnel and activities 
directly related to coordinating and carrying out the national 
recreational boating safety program. The Act requires that the 
Secretary publish annually in the Federal Register a detailed 
accounting of the projects, programs, and activities under this 

ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of this notice by calling the U.S. 
Coast Guard Infoline at 1-800-368-5647. This notice is available on the 
Internet at http://dms.dot.gov and at http://www.uscgboating.org.

Office of Boating Safety, telephone 202-267-1077, fax 202-267-4285, or 
Mr. Jeffrey N. Hoedt, Chief, Program Management Division, telephone 
202-267-0950, fax 202-267-4285.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st 
Century became law on June 9, 1998. The Act requires that of the $5 
million made available to carry out the national recreational boating 
safety program, each year, $2,000,000 shall be available only to ensure 
compliance with Chapter 43 of title 46, U.S. Code--Recreational 
Vessels. The responsibility to administer these funds is delegated to 
the Commandant of the United States Coast Guard. The statute directs 
that no funds available to the Secretary under this subsection may be 
used to replace funding traditionally provided through general 
appropriations, nor for any purposes except those purposes authorized; 
namely, for personnel and activities directly related to coordinating 
and carrying out the national recreational boating safety program. 
Amounts made available each fiscal year, 1999-2003, shall remain 
available until expended. Use of these funds requires compliance with 
standard Federal contracting rules with associated lead and processing 
times resulting in a lag time between available funds and spending. The 
following activities have been initiated using fiscal year 1999-2002 
funds transferred to the Coast Guard from the Aquatic Resources 
(Wallop-Breaux) Trust Fund. The total amount of fiscal year 1999, 2000, 
2001 and 2002 funding committed, obligated and/or expended for each 
activity is shown.
    Factory Visit Program: An initial contract was awarded to establish 
a national recreational boat factory visit program using contractor 
personnel. The contract included the development of a plan of action 
and an eighteen-month pilot program to validate the elements of the 
plan and the concept of the program. The pilot program commenced in the 
summer of 2000. ``Compliance associates'' (inspectors) were trained and 
formal factory visits were initiated in January 2001. The factory visit 
program currently allows contractor personnel, acting on behalf of the 
Coast Guard, to visit approximately 2,000 recreational boat 
manufacturers each year to inspect for compliance with the Federal 
regulations, communicate with the manufacturers as to why they need to 
comply with the Federal regulations, and educate them, as necessary, on 
how to comply with the Federal regulations. ($4,484,665)
    Boat Compliance Testing: Funding is providing for expansion of the 
boat compliance testing program whereby new manually propelled and 
outboard recreational boats are purchased in the open market and tested 
for compliance with the Federal flotation standards. The expanded 
program includes inboard/sterndrive boats and used boats. ($401,381)
    Associated Equipment Compliance Testing: A contract was awarded to 
buy recreational boat ``associated equipment,'' e.g., starters, 
alternators, fuel pumps, bilge pumps, etc., and test this equipment for 
compliance with Federal safety regulations. This new

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initiative complements the boat compliance testing program. ($346,446)
    Compliance Associated Travel: Travel by employees of the Office of 
Boating Safety is being performed to carry out additional compliance 
actions and to gather background and planning information for new 
compliance initiatives. ($98,395)
    New Boat Manufacturer Outreach Package: A contract was awarded to 
design and develop a comprehensive and user-friendly outreach package 
for distribution to new recreational boat manufacturers. Included are a 
brochure and video that outline the many facets of the recreational 
boat manufacturing business, including, Federal regulations, voluntary 
standards, self-certification, financial aspects, insurance concerns, 
liability issues, points of contact and the steps necessary to become a 
new recreational boat manufacturer. The package also includes plain 
language guidelines that help clarify Federal requirements. The new 
outreach package is aimed at increasing the level of new recreational 
boat manufacturer compliance with applicable Federal regulations. 
    National Boating Survey: A contract has been awarded for a 
comprehensive major national recreational boating survey scheduled to 
be conducted during the fall of 2002. The purpose of this project is to 
obtain up-to-date statistical estimates of recreational boats, boating 
households, boaters, boating exposures, practices and activities for 
the 2002 boating season. This data will be extrapolated to produce 
national, regional and state estimates of boat use as well as the 
characteristics of boat operators, passengers, boats and the operating 
environment ($1,591,666).
    Boating Accident Report Database (BARD): A contract has been 
awarded to enhance the capability of all States and the Coast Guard for 
the successful electronic exchange, management, and reporting of 
recreational boating accident report data using the BARD software 
application. This contract provides for software module development, 
software module testing, applicable rework, implementation, 
maintenance, and technical support for the user community in the 50 
States, five Territories, and the District of Columbia. ($2,267,320)
    State Incident Notification: The Coast Guard Search and Rescue 
Management Information System (SARMIS) software has been modified to 
electronically notify the relevant State boating law administrators 
regarding any fatal recreational boating incident cases to which the 
Coast Guard responds. The intent of this notification is to ensure that 
these cases are captured in the accident report data submitted by the 
State boating law administrators to the Boating Accident Report 
Database (BARD). ($12,678)
    Articulated Mannequins/Computer Simulation Model: The objective of 
this contracted program is to improve the safety of recreational 
boaters by fostering developmental technology for improved personal 
flotation devices (PFDs). This program is furthering development of 
flotation mannequins and a water forces computer simulation program to 
promote the rapid, objective evaluation of different PFD designs on 
various body types that are representative of the recreational boating 
population. The computer simulation program will be validated through 
the use of a family of anthropomorphic, articulated mannequins. Under 
the contract to develop the articulated mannequins and computer 
simulation model, a male model has been built and is almost perfected. 
Currently, a female/child mannequin is being developed. The development 
of a computer simulation program will facilitate evaluation of the 
effectiveness of new and unique PFD designs. ($814,341)
    Risk-Based Personal Flotation Device Approval Process: This ongoing 
effort will improve the approval process for personal flotation devices 
(PFDs) by developing a risk-based compliance system that is based on an 
objective Life Saving Index. This index will provide a formal structure 
and consistency to the process for accepting new approaches to 
designing devices for drowning prevention. The risk-based process 
identifies critical factors for evaluating PFD lifesaving potential and 
defines the minimum level of performance necessary for approval. 
    Carbon Monoxide Research: The Office of Boating Safety has entered 
into a Memorandum of Agreement with the Department of Health and Human 
Services, U.S. Public Health Service, Federal Occupational Health 
Program, to continue investigation into identifying and classifying 
additional recreational boating carbon monoxide related deaths and 
injuries. ($573,475)
    Houseboat Manufacturers Workshop/Conference Support: Funding 
provided support services for a Coast Guard-sponsored gathering of the 
houseboat industry to explore potential design solutions to the carbon 
monoxide poisonings that have occurred on recreational houseboats. 
    Hull Identification Number (HIN) Economic Analysis: The objective 
of this contracted effort is to provide the Coast Guard with a cost/
benefit analysis on the effects of expanding the current 12-character 
HIN to a 17-character HIN for all newly constructed recreational boats. 
    Virtual Reality Personal Watercraft (PWC): A virtual reality PWC is 
being developed under contract to provide a platform to gather 
objective data on operator reactions to various scenarios. This 
information would otherwise be unobtainable or would require more 
costly methods and sources, due to the risk of injury to the operator 
as well as due to the difficulty of accurately replicating conditions 
for all operators. The virtual reality PWC will be used in various test 
scenarios to collect human factors data including the measurement of 
reactive movements and reaction time that will assist in making 
decisions or taking action to improve personal watercraft safety. The 
data from this effort will give greater insight into the human/machine 
interface related to PWC operation and will assist in the effort to 
attempt to reduce PWC accidents. ($407,638)
    Knowledge Management System: The first phase of this three-phase 
contracted effort entailed the development of a comprehensive Knowledge 
Management plan for automating office processes in the Office of 
Boating Safety. The second phase, when implemented, will install 
document imaging software to capture and fully automate product 
assurance and consumer files and provide support that will ultimately 
enhance efficiency in supporting customers, partners and stakeholders. 
The third phase, if implemented, would provide quicker, more effective 
and efficient program oversight while providing customers with the 
ability to do business with the Coast Guard via web-based technology, 
thus enabling the Coast Guard to reduce the amount of paper 
transactions involved in servicing external customers. This system will 
assist in the electronic monitoring, storage and daily use of 
information and materials within the Office of Boating Safety. 
    Coast Guard Infoline/Office of Boating Safety Web Site: Funding has 
been provided for both technological and educational enhancements to 
the toll free Coast Guard Infoline and the Office of Boating Safety Web 
site to create a ``one-stop'' customer service center. The Infoline 
provides information about safety, regulations, communications, Coast 
Guard policy, and available material related to boating safety issues. 
Additionally, this effort provides a complete interactive recreational 
boating safety Web site that offers the public and boating safety 
agencies and organizations real-time information on

[[Page 72020]]

every aspect of recreational boating safety. One of the goals of this 
program is to create a ``one-stop'' customer service center for all 
users. ($635,243)
    Federal Requirements Publication: A customer-friendly ``Federal 
Requirements and Safety Tips for Recreational Boats'' publication was 
developed based on easy-to-read, high visibility graphics, and with 
subject-specific safety tips that promote high retention by the reader. 
Both hard copy and electronic interactive versions have been created 
for the public. The enhanced Federal Requirements brochure is being 
widely distributed, and in addition, can be downloaded from the Office 
of Boating Safety Web site (http://www.uscgboating.org). ($253,000)
    Emergency Radio Call Procedures Decal: An emergency radio call 
procedures decal was produced and disseminated that provides the 
recreational boater with the proper procedures to use in making an 
emergency or distress call via VHF-FM Channel 16. This decal will be 
distributed via the Coast Guard Auxiliary, U.S. Power Squadrons, and 
State boating offices, as well as U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 
Tennessee Valley Authority, and the Bureau of Land Management. This 
item also supports the Vessel Safety Check (VSC) program provided by 
the Coast Guard Auxiliary, U.S. Power Squadrons and States. The VSC 
program is a free service provided by these organizations offering a 
safety check of recreational boats 65' or less in length. ($25,810)
    Aids to Navigation Booklet: A full-color booklet, ``U.S. Aids to 
Navigation System,'' was produced to assist recreational boaters in 
better understanding the use and identification of navigational aids. 
This booklet is now used as an educational adjunct to the safe boating 
classes taught by the Coast Guard Auxiliary, U.S. Power Squadrons, and 
many of the States. It is also distributed in conjunction with the 
Vessel Safety Check program. ($55,327)
    ``Operation BoatSmart'' Support: Funding support was provided to 
this initiative which coordinated Coast Guard and other boating safety 
organizations aims to energize recreational boating safety programs by 
strengthening and extending partnerships at the national, State and 
local levels. Through combined and coordinated efforts, the BoatSmart 
partners targeted those activities and behaviors that presented the 
greatest risk for the recreational boater. ``Operation BoatSmart'' 
brought together these organizations to work in tandem to promote a 
positive change in boater awareness and behavior, with special emphasis 
on inland waters where most recreational boating takes place. Special 
emphasis was focused on encouraging life jacket wear, boater education, 
and scrupulous enforcement of boating under the influence laws by 
appropriate authorities. ($273,586)
    Recreational Boating Safety Program Marketing Support: A national 
marketing, awareness and education campaign in support of ``Operation 
BoatSmart,'' as well as America's Boating Course, Boating Under the 
Influence Campaign, and the Vessel Safety Check (VSC) Program has been 
funded. America's Boating Course is a joint boating safety education 
course developed by the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and the U.S. Power 
Squadrons, supported by the Coast Guard. This course, available via CD-
Rom or Internet will set the standard for recreational boating safety 
in our country. The Boating Under the Influence (BUI) campaign, ``It's 
a Different World on the Water,'' is a multi-year effort to educate the 
recreational boater about the hazards of boating under the influence of 
alcohol or drugs. The marketing plan utilizes nationally recognized 
cartoon characters, Popeye and Olive Oyl, to advertise the VSC program 
to the boating public at marinas, yacht clubs, boat storage facilities, 
retail outlets and other recreational outlets. ($98,956)

Recreational Boating Safety Outreach Program

    This program provides full marketing, media, public information, 
and program strategy support to the RBS effort. The goal is to 
coordinate the RBS outreach campaigns some of which include: National 
Boating Under the Influence Campaign (BUI), Operation BoatSmart, PFD 
Wear, Vessel Safety Check Program (VSC), America's Boating Course, and 
other recreational boating safety issues on an as needed basis. 

Kayak/Canoe Sponson Study

    Study conducted in conjunction with the CG Research and Development 
Center to study the efficacy of the use of sponsons in canoes and 
kayaks. ($26,171)

Field Support--District Funded Projects

    Seventeenth Coast Guard District Boating Safety Detachment: Funding 
was provided on a one-time, non-recurring basis to the Seventeenth 
Coast Guard District in support of a Coast Guard Boating Safety 
Detachment to assist in the transition of the State of Alaska's 
assumption of Recreational Boating Safety Program responsibilities. 
    Seventeenth Coast Guard District Boating Education and Safety 
(BEST)Teams: A three year effort, the BEST teams operate in the 17th 
District in 16 separate locations, with more than 30 team members 
providing educational benefits to the boaters of that district. 
    Eighth Coast Guard District Western Rivers Strike Team: Similar to 
the 17th District program these strike teams operate in the western 
rivers in the 8th District conducting safety education. ($190,000)
    National Boating Registration System: As a service for States/
Territories that currently have inadequate (or no) computer software 
program to maintain their vessel numbering system information, funding 
was provided to the U.S. Coast Guard Operations Systems Center (OSC) to 
develop a National Boating Registration System software program that 
can easily be adapted by any State/Territory for their own use. The 
software that has been provided to States/Territories at no cost 
includes a function to automatically generate the annual report on 
numbered vessels that must be submitted to the Coast Guard each year. 
    Marine Dealer Literature Display Racks: Display racks for U.S. 
Coast Guard and U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary literature were purchased to 
improve distribution of boating safety literature. These display racks 
are intended to be used at retail outlets and marine dealers. ($23,725)
    Personnel Support: Funding is providing for personnel to support 
the development of new regulations, to support new contracting 
activities associated with the additional funding, and to monitor and 
manage the contracts awarded. ($660,121)
    A total of $15,337,569 of the $20,000,000 made available to the 
Coast Guard through annual transfers of $5 million in fiscal years 
1999, 2000, 2001, and 2002 has been committed, obligated or expended as 
of September 30, 2002 and $245,000 is being held for a national boating 

    Dated: November 25, 2002.
Harvey E. Johnson,
Rear Admiral, U.S. Coast Guard, Director of Operations Policy.
[FR Doc. 02-30619 Filed 12-2-02; 8:45 am]