The following is the text of a press release issued by the U.S. Coast Guard:
(ST. LOUIS) — The Coast Guard responded to reports of unlicensed commercial passenger vessels operating on Lake of the Ozarks in Osage Beach, Mo., Aug. 19, 2008.
After checking eight operators and vessels, Coast Guard investigators identified two operators that were not properly licensed to carry passengers. The unlicensed operators were ordered to terminate operations until obtaining proper licensing.
Commercial passenger vessel operations are subject to federal regulations, which include minimum safety equipment and licensing standards on Lake of the Ozarks under Title 46, Section 8903 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations. Failure to meet licensing regulations can result in fines up to 1,000 dollars.
“Licensing and inspections regulations are established for the public’s safety. We have a responsibility to enforce these regulations on the Lake of the Ozarks and the Coast Guard intends to conduct future, similar operations on both an announced and unannounced basis,” said Capt. Steve Hudson, commander Coast Guard Sector Upper Mississippi River.