ON THE DOG WATCH
NEW REGULATIONS FOR PRIVATE VESSELSWell, here is the latest on the paper-work shuffle south of the border. As of 29 April 2005 (and amended 5 July 2005) Mexico has changed its check-in and check-out procedures for private yachts (foreign and national flag) only for coastal navigation (Mexican port to Mexican port). Vessels entering and leaving Mexico at their first and last port of entry, must still formally clear in and out with Port Captain, Immigration, and Customs, and pay the nominal fees, as it has always been required. International arrivals (and departures) have been made easier in Ensenada by having officials of all agencies at one location. You can do it yourself using the same crew list form that cruisers to Mexico have been using for years. Once this form is completed and stamped, you must keep it with your ship’s papers until you formally check out of Mexico. At your last port before departing Mexico, you must repeat the procedure and obtain an International Zarpe, which will be required in order to enter your next country.
MOVING FROM PORT TO PORT IN MEXICO
Once you have done your International Check-in, navigating between Mexican ports will be relatively easy only if you stay in marinas. This is where the confusion comes in, the new law relies on authorized marinas to become an Honorary Delegate of the Port Captain, and eventually they will be handling all the paperwork. No fees are required and an Immigration agent is not involved. Unfortunately, in ports where there is no authorized marina, or if you anchor out, you are still required to notify the Port Captain in writing, (not by VHF radio alone as some have reported) and you must give the following information: A) Name of Vessel. B) Flag. C) Registration number. D) Gross and Net tonnage. E) Last port or destination and trip itinerary. F) List of Crew and any changes. G) Time of arrival and departure. (There is a new form available for this purpose and a down-loadable version is available below this article.) Thanks to Lorenza and Juan Arias, ship’s agents in Puerto Vallarta, I have obtained an English translation of the new law and it is also posted below this article. As I learn of marinas that have obtained Honorary Delegate status, I will post them to this Newsletter as well.
As with any bureaucracy, it will take some time for the bugs to be worked out of this new procedure. At the present time, if you speak good Spanish, some Port Captains will take the information over the radio and record it; others will not. Bottom line, the responsibility is still on the boat captain to properly report his vessel’s movements while in Mexico and someone, Port Captain, vessel owner, or marina, still has to do the paperwork. The prudent mariner will always get it in writing, so there aren’t problems or misunderstandings down the line. The major difference in the new law is that vessels traveling between ports within the country are no longer required to pay fees or report to Immigration.
ENGLISH TRANSLATION OF ART. 67, CAPITINIA DE PUERTO
From Juan Arias Jr. “Paperman” Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
IN REGARDS TO THE COMMUNICATION NUMBER 285/2005 DATED JULY 5TH 2005 AND THAT REFERS TO THE FEATURES THAT WILL APPLY TO THE CHECK IN AND OUT FOR PRIVATE AND RECREATIONAL BOATS NATIONAL OR FOREIGN IS AS IT READS:
ON APRIL 19TH OF THIS YEAR IT WAS PUBLIC IN THE OFFICIAL DIARY OF THE FEDERATION A MODIFICATION OF THE LAW ON THE REGULATIONS OF NAVIGATION, CONSISTING IN THE ADDITION OF ARTICLE 67 BIS. IT IS AS FOLLOWS:
ARTICLE 67 BIS. THE PRIVATE BOATS WITH FOREIGN FLAGS FOR RECREATION OR SPORT BOATS WILL GET THE CHECK IN AUTHORIZATION EXCLUSIVELY AT THE PORT CAPTAIN OF THE FIRST PORT, AND WHEN CHECKING OUT. EVERY CHECK IN OR CHECK OUT HAS TO BE INFORM AT THE MARINA IF THEY HAVE A AUTHORIZED HONORARY DELEGATE ALSO THEY HAVE TO NOTIFY OF ANY CHANGES OF CAPTAIN OR CREW ALTHOUGH ALL BOATS THE SAME AS THE NATIONAL BOATS WILL HAVE TO GET A CHECK OUT WHEN THEY ARE LEAVING FOR INTERNATIONAL WATERS.
THE AUTHORIZED HONORARY DELEGATE AT THE TOURIST, SPORT, OR RECREATIONAL MARINAS HAVE TO KEEP A LOG OF ALL CHECK IN OR CHECK OUT OF ALL THE BOATS THAT THEY ASSIST REGULARLY OR JUST AS A ONE TIME VISIT.
DUE TO ALL THIS AND TO AVOID JUDGEMENT OR CONTRADICTION OF INTERPRETATION IN THE VARIOUS PORT CAPTAINS YOU WILL HAVE THE FEATURES AND PARTICULAR PROCEDURES FOR THEIR APPLICATION AS FOLLOWS:
1) THIS ORDER APPLIES EQUAL TO THE RECREATIONAL OR SPORT BOATS EITHER NATIONAL OR FOREIGN AS LONG AS THEY ARE FOR PRIVATE USE.
2) IN CASE OF INTERNATIONAL NAVIGATION THE CHECK IN OR CHECK OUT FOR RECREATIONAL OR SPORT BOATS, MEXICAN OR FOREIGN, WILL HAVE TO BE DONE AT THE PORT CAPTAINS. IT IS NOT A MUST TO USE A YACHT AGENT UNLESS THE USER WANTS THE SERVICES OF AN AGENT. THIS IS BECAUSE SUCH BOATS DO NOT MAKE COMMERCIAL OPERATIONS, THEIR OWNERS ARE NOT SHIPPERS OR OPERATORS IN TERMS OF THE ARTICLES 16 AND 19 OF THE NAVIGATION LAW. THEY ARE BOATS EXCLUSIVELY FOR PRIVATE USE. THIS MEANS THAT THEY ARE USED ONLY FOR PERSONAL REASON AND NOT COMMERCIAL. THE USE OF AN AGENT DEPENDS ON THE NECESSITY OR INTEREST OF THE USER ESPECIALLY WHEN THE CHECK IN OR CHECK OUT IS NOT ON WORKING DAYS OR IS AFTER HOURS OR FOR THE COMFORT AND FACILITY FOR THE USER.
3) IN CASE OF NAVIGATION IN BETWEEN NATIONAL PORTS THE RECREATIONAL OR SPORT BOATS NATIONAL OR FOREIGN, OF PRIVATE USE, IN THE PORTS THAT HAVE THE AUTHORIZED MARINAS AND A HONORARY DELEGATE, THE CHECK IN AND CHECK OUT OF RECREATIONAL OR SPORT BOATS NATIONAL OR FOREIGN WILL BE DONE BY THE HONORARY DELEGATE WHO WILL BE RESPONSIBLE TO KEEP A LOG AS MENTIONED ON ARTICLE 67 BIS. OF THE NAVIGATION LAW AND REGULATIONS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE FORM NUMBER 1 THAT IS ENCLOSED, TO GET ALL THE INFORMATION.
A) THE PLACE WHERE THE PORT CAPTAIN AND THE MARINA IS LOCATED, AND IF ACTING AS A HONORARY DELEGATED.
B) NAME OF THE TOURIST MARINA
C) NAME OF THE BOAT
E) REGISTRY NUMBER
F) GROSS AND NET TONNAGE
G) LAST PORT OR DESTINATION AND ITINERARY OF TRIP
H) LIST OF CREW OR CHANGES
I) TIME AND DATE OF ARRIVAL
K) NAME AND SIGNATURE OF THE HONORARY DELEGATE
L) LETTER OF AUTHORIZATION OF THE HONORARY DELEGATE
AT THE SAME TIME THE HONORARY DELEGATE WILL BE INSTRUCTED TO INFORM THE PORT CAPTAIN EVERY DAY BY ELECTRONIC MEANS OF ALL THE MOVEMENTS REGISTERED
4) IN THE PORTS WHERE THE MARINA DOES NOT HAVE A HONORARY DELEGATE THEY ARE REQUIRED TO DO THE NECESSARY PAPERS TO GET A HONORARY DELEGATE SO THEY CAN COMPLY WITH THE ARTICLE NUMBER 43 OF THE NAVIGATION LAW AND THE REGULATION OF NUMBER 67 BIS. UNTIL THE MARINA HAS AN HONORARY DELEGATE THE FORMS MUST BE PRESENTED AT THE PORT CAPTAIN BY THE OWNER OR CAPTAIN OF THE BOAT.
5) IN THE PORTS WHERE THERE IS NO AUTHORIZED MARINA, THE FORM OF CHECK IN AND OUT FOR BOATS RECREATIONAL OR SPORT NATIONAL OR FOREIGN HAS TO BE RENDERED DIRECTLY TO THE PORT CAPTAIN BY MEANS OF RADIO FOR ALL THE INFORMATION, BY WRITING, OR ANY OTHER MEANS OF COMMUNICATION IN WHICH CASE THE PORT CAPTAIN IS RESPONSIBLE TO KEEP A LOG IN ACCORDANCE TO FORM NUMBER 2 IN WHICH THEY WILL GET THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION.
A) NAME OF PORT CAPTAIN
B) NAME OF BOAT
D) REGISTRY NUMBER.
E) GROSS AND NET TONNAGE.
F) LAST PORT OR DESTINATION AND TRIP ITINERARY,
G) LIST OF CREW AND OR ANY CHANGES.
H) TIME AND DATE OF ARRIVAL AND DEPARTURE.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO SAY THAT THIS REPORT MUST NOT BE CONSIDERED AS AN AUTHORIZATION OF ARRIVAL OR DEPARTURE, SO THE FEE CHARGED BY THE PORT CAPTAIN ESTABLISHED ON ARTICLE 170 OF THE FEDERAL LAW DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PAID.
6) IN A COMPLEMENTARY WAY AND IN KEEPING WITH THE COMMITMENT TO ADHERE TO THE TREATY FOR THE SECURITY AND PROSPERITY OF NORTH AMERICA, THE FOREIGN BOATS RECREATIONAL OR SPORT (LESS THAN 300 GRT) WILL HAVE THE OBLIGATION TO HAVE THE AUTOMATIC IDENTIFICATION SYSTEM WHEN THIS DECREE COMES INTO EFFECT IN MEXICO.
7) IN CASE OF A ANY JUDICIAL DISTRICT ORDER OR WORKING DISTRICT ORDER OR THE ADMINISTRATIVE FEDERAL ORDER TO DENY THE CHECK OUT OF ANY BOAT RECREATIONAL OR SPORT NATIONAL OR FOREIGN THAT HAS BEEN DETERMINED, THE PORT CAPTAIN WILL NOTIFY THE OWNER OF THE BOAT AS WELL AS THE REPRESENTATIVE OF THE MARINA OR THE HONORARY DELEGATE IF THERE IS ONE, THAT THE BOAT IS NOT AUTHORIZED TO LEAVE THE PORT. IN CASE THE OWNER NEGLECTS THIS ORDER, THEY WILL NOTIFY THE AUTHORITY AND WILL PROCEED TO BULLETIN SUCH BOAT AT ITS LOCATION AND BY WHAT LAW IS USED TO PROCEED AGAINST THE BOAT.
8) WHEN BY DETERMINATION OF THE PORT CAPTAIN HE HAS TO CLOSE THE PORT FOR NAVIGATION DUE TO ADVERSE METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS, HE WILL HAVE TO NOTIFY, THROUGH ALL MEANS AT HIS DISPOSAL, THIS SITUATION TO THE PORTUARY MARITIME COMMUNITY. IF EVEN AFTER THIS, ANY BOAT RECREATIONAL OR SPORT LEAVES THE PORT FOR NAVIGATION IT MUST BE BULLETIN FOR ITS LOCATION TO ADVISE THE BOAT TO RETURN TO THE PORT OR GO TO THE NEAREST PORT FOR SAFETY. ADVISING IN THIS CASE IT WILL NOT BE ANY ADMINISTRATIVE SANCTION ESTABLISHED BY ARTICLE 140 FRACCION III, A) OF THE NAVIGATION LAW.
THESE REGULATIONS CONSTITUTE A FRAME OF REFERENCES THAT WILL BE ADJUSTED BY THE CONSENT OF THE NECESSITIES OF THE NAVIGATION IN THE JURISDICTIONAL NATIONAL WATERS, AS WELL AS THE DISPOSITIONS OF THE GENERAL COORDINATION OF PORTS AND MERCHANT NAVY.
THE PRESENT DOCUMENT MUST BE KNOWLEDGE FOR THEIR APPLICATION TO THE PORT CAPTAINS AND PORT DELEGATIONS ASSIGN TO THEIR JURISDICTION.
THE ABOVE ESTABLISHED BESIDES THE ARTICLE NUMBER 36 FRACTION 1 AND XVI OF THE PUBLIC FEDERAL ORGANIC ADMINISTRATION 1,2,3,4,6 FRACTION 1,7 FRACTION 1 32,38,39,41 AND 43 OF THE NAVIGATION LAW 67 AND 67 BIS. OF THE REGULATIONS OF THE NAVIGATION LAW, 50 OF THE REGULATIONS OF THE PORTS LAW AND 28 FRACTION 1 OF THE REGULATIONS OF THE INTERIOR OF REGULATIONS OF THE SECRETARY OF COMMUNICATION AND TRANSPORTATION.
· For a printable version of the new Mexican port-to-port clearance form, CLICK HERE.
· For a printable version of an acceptable crew list for Spanish speaking countries, CLICK HERE
ID1 = 30
- March - Rediscovering The Once Forgotten Middle
- May - Bringing The Boat Back From Mexico
- July - New Regulations for Private Vessels Moving From Port To Port in Mexico
- August - Six Yacht Deliveries
- October - 26 October to 3 November 2005, M/Y HERCULES, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, to Ventura, California
- September - October - Sailing and Writing
- August - 29 July to 5 August 2008, M/Y ORIANA, Mazatlan, Mexico, to San Diego, California
- January - April - three very different yacht deliveries.
- October - Climbing the Hill: “Rounding the Cape.” and Climbing the Hill: “Up to Mag Bay, then on to San Diego.”
- September - SEFERINA: “Astoria, OR, to Port McNeill, BC.”
- December - BELLALOU: “Tortola to Florida.”
- May - ENSENADA, THE EASIEST PLACE TO CHECK INTO MEXICO
- May-June - WHAT A LIFE: “Newport Beach, CA, to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.”