New Regulations Information
- The ONE place not to be is in the path of whales. Don’t position your vessel in the path of oncoming whales within 400 yards of a whale.
- Stay at least TWO hundred yards away from any killer whale (200 yards = the distance of two football felds or about 200 meters).
- Remember these THREE ways to Be Whale Wise: follow the guidelines for viewing all wildlife, check for local protected areas and restrictions, and always be safe.
WHO do the new rules apply to? All motorized and non-motorized vessels (including kaykas), with exceptions to maintain safe navigtion and for certain types of vessels- government vessels in the course of official duties, ships in the shipping lanes, reserch vessels under permit, and vessels lawfully engaged in commercial or treaty Indian fishing that are actively setting, retrieving, or closely tending gishing gear.
II. Position a vessel to be in the path of any killer whale at any point located within 400 yards ( 365.8 m) of the whale.
WHEN do the new rules go into effect? May 16, 2011
WHERE do the new rules apply? In inland waters of Washington State- east of the entrance to the Strait of Juan de Fuca and south of the U.S./Canada international boundary.
WHY did NOAA adopt new regulations? Southern Resident killer whale were listed as endangered in 2005. Vessel impacts were identified as one of the threats. These new regulations implement an action in the recovery pland and are designed to protect all killer whales by reducing impacts from vessels. Additonal background information on the rationale and analyses to support the regulations is available at www.nwr.noaa.gov.