Twinvee Divers 900X450

Small Boat Operation Procedures

The FSUCML maintains a diverse fleet of boats. These boats are available to all approved operators and to others who have specified on their reservation form the need for one of our staff to serve as boat captain (fees apply). Every user is expected to read, understand, and follow the procedures outlined below and be familiar with the FSUCML Boating Safety Manual.

Boat Operator Certifications & Responsibilities

Operator Certification

Safety-Related Responsibilities

The vessel operator is responsible for safe vessel operation and compliance with all FSUCML, state, and federal policies related to SAFETY, RULES OF THE ROAD and EQUIPMENT ON BOARD. In emergencies, the vessel operator may deviate from these practices at his/her discretion, especially where safety for passengers and crew is a concern.

FSUCML vessel operators are required to have a crew onboard.

The boat operator shall:

  • Always have a crew onboard the vessel.
  • Brief passengers before departure on the location and proper use of all safety and communication equipment.
  • Determine special medical needs of any passengers before departure.
  • Ensure that all non-swimming passengers wear personal flotation devices (PFD) at all times.
  • All pontoon boat occupants must be seated while underway, where seats are provided.
  • Report to the FSUCML Marine Operations Staff all accidents, damage, and malfunction of vessels IMMEDIATELY upon return to FSUCML.
  • Collect waivers from each passenger before departure.
  • Complete a Radio Check with FSUCML Marine Operations Staff while departing boat basin.

Vessel operators, crew, and passengers should remain in the vessel at all times while the motor is running. All diving from small vessels must adhere to diving safety rules. See the Academic Diving Program website.

Check out & Maintenance Responsibilities

Before Leaving the Dock:

  • Fill out reservation online
  • Fill out Float plan and submit to the Small Boat Technician
  • Fill out liability waivers if applicable
  • Make sure plugs are in Boat
  • Double check fuel
  • *Make sure lights are working
  • *Make sure Spot light works
  • Complete & sign Boat Condition Check List w/ Small Boat Technician

*night trips only

After Returning to the Dock:

  • Properly put the boat back on Trailer
  • Rinse engine
  • Rinse Trailer
  • Scrub boat with deck brush on inside and sponge on outside
  • Report fuel use to the Small Boat Technician
  • Review boat condition with Small Boat Technician

Area of Operation On and Off Site

On-site use: Small boats (including the pontoons boats and all boats less than 20 ft) may be used in all protected areas of bays and inland of barrier islands and shoals or in river or lakes. These areas extend eastward from the Carrabelle River channel landward of Dog Island and Dog Island Reef to the mouth of and including Alligator Harbor.

Off-site use: All off-site use is subject to the approval of FSUCML Marine Operations staff. Off-site use requires that the operator demonstrate proficiency in towing a trailer, backing a vessel down a ramp, and retrieving a vessel from the water. Only FSU vehicles are permitted to tow Coastal and Marine Lab boats. The vehicle can be from any department or unit within the university, but the vehicle will need approval from our staff confirming it is well suited to tow the boat in use. Anyone towing a boat will need to submit a float plan for off-site use. All off-site research locations must be reviewed and approved by FSUCML Marine Operations staff before departure.

The Twin Vee, Dusky, and Calcutta can be used for offshore research. Their use requires that the boat is operated by an FSUCML boat captain or by a staff member with special certification for these boats.

Last Updated: Thursday, January 4, 2024 at 12:37 PM