NAVSAC to discuss COLREGS in Tampa, Florida

November 20, 2012 - via AUVSI

The Navigation Safety Advisory Council (NAVSAC) will meet on 28-29 Nov. in Tampa, Fla. to discuss matters relating to maritime collisions, ramming, groundings, Inland and International Rules of the Road, navigation regulations and equipment, routing measures, marine information, diving safety, and aids to navigation systems.

Of specific interest to AUVSI and its members of the maritime community are the proposed regulations for unmanned underwater and unmanned surface vehicles. AUVSI believes the proposed regulations would be highly impractical for most widely-used unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs), but especially for UUVs under 8m in length and 1m in diameter.

The proposed new rules would have a significant impact on the industry and the U.S. Navy, on the performance and cost of the vehicles, and would provide very little benefit in terms of maritime safety. Since UUVs are not remotely piloted because of the inability to maintain constant communication with them, they should not be subject to rules for manned vessels. UUV manufacturers could generally acknowledge that the new regulations may be relevant for large diameter UUVs which might create a potential hazard for navigation.

AUVSI submitted comments to the Department of Homeland Security, Docket USCG-2012-0212 and will be attending the meeting in Tampa next week.

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Author:Mario D. Mairena