Coast Guard studying West Coast vessel traffic to determine navigation risks

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(SAN FRANCISCO) — The U.S. Coast Guard requests public participation during the Pacific Coast Port Access Route Study (PAC-PARS).

Federal Register notices for the PAC-PARS have been opened for comment. Comments and related materials must be received on or before Jan. 25, 2022.

The PAC-PARS will evaluate the usage of coastal waterways by collecting vessel tracking data, environmental data, existing and planned offshore development/infrastructure, historical marine incident data, and public comment.

This is the first comprehensive evaluation of all vessel traffic patterns that use the Pacific Coast waterway along the coast of California, Oregon and Washington. The main goal of the PAC-PARS is to evaluate historic and future waterway usage to determine navigational risk.

“The primary focus of this study will incorporate all traffic patterns of vessels approaching and departing the major ports and specifically vessel interaction with existing coastal routes,” said Cmdr. William George, 11th Coast Guard District Waterways Management chief. “The Coast Guard has witnessed a continuous growth of waterway use with current and proposed offshore operations and we are committed to providing the high level of navigational safety that the maritime community expects.”

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KTLA News photo

The PAC-PARS, along with comments from the public, will determine if current navigation protocols are adequate for existing and future traffic levels.

“District 11 is excited to begin this opportunity to evaluate all data associated with navigation off the California coast,” said Lt. Nicholas Buch, 11th District Waterways Management analyst. “We are engaging federal, Native American tribes, state and waterway users to collect any data associated with this study. The public’s input is critical in completing a compressive evaluation of the waterway and to provide safe navigational protocols.”

The notice of study was published in the Federal Register under docket USCG-2021-0345, and can be found by searching the docket at

– U.S. Coast Guard

By Professional Mariner Staff