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The Masthead
Sept. 2012 Page 3
Third St., Suite 10
Annapolis, MD 21403
The USCG (among many, many other duties!) is the collector, holder and analysts for the
boating accidents in the US. The recreational accidents are reported annually and are avail-
able on the USCG Office of Boating Safety’s website
takes a good hard look at these statistics and develops trends and analysis of what could have
prevented the major occurrences. Trying to figure out and prevent these accidents is a huge
task for a government agency with a small staff, that’s where we can help. Through non-
profit grants, the ABYC is able to take the USCG’s statistics, perform research and testing and find a solution to
some of these issues. Sometimes the solution is relatively simple; such as increasing the depth of the lowest ladder
rung to keep feet out of the propeller area. This is something that most likely will never pass the requirements to
become a federal regulation, but is most certainly viable for an ABYC standard. Bottom line, the USCG relies on
ABYC to standardize when regulations will not get through the process. If a regulation is needed, however, the
USCG also relies on ABYC to put the standard in place to be referenced by the regulation. The most recent example
is ABYC’s A-33, Engine Cutoff Devices which is referenced in new proposed regulation. This is how standards and
regulations work in harmony and depend on each other. ABYC always meets or exceeds the federal regs, so compli-
ance is never a problem! Knowing the difference between a standard and a regulation is important, however. Non-
compliance with a standard can definitely result in a lawsuit (in the case of an injury or misuse) but non-compliance
with a regulation, now that’s a possible recall! As with this and other topics, we’re here to help, call anytime!
John Adey, ABYC President
John Adey
ABYC Boating Safety Clinic
other location that would be interested in hosting the FREE BOAT CHECKS? If
so, please call Nina Ullrich at ABYC at 410-990-4460 x 105 or email