29 Abandoned & Derelict Boats To Be Removed

January 17, 2024 | 3 Comments

A joint programme between the Government and Keep Bermuda Beautiful [KBB] will remove 29 “abandoned and derelict boats” from our waters which are located near Woody’s Restaurant and in Ely’s Harbour, Mill’s Creek, Fairylands Creek, Riddell’s Bay, Lagoon Park, Spanish Point, Mullet Bay and Great Bay.

A Government spokesperson said, “To improve the health and safety of our waterways for all members of the public, the Ministry of Transport, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Marine and Ports Services advise the public that a joint programme between the Government and Keep Bermuda Beautiful [KBB] under an MOU signed by the Minister of Transport will remove and dispose of twenty-nine [29] abandoned and derelict boats from our waters.

“A Government Notice to remove 29 abandoned and derelict vessels – owners unknown – will render them Government-owned from the 17th of February 2024. After that time, marine contractors will remove them under contract to KBB.

“The 29 ‘unknown’ abandoned and derelict vessels, which are not only unsightly but present an environmental risk and hazard to other motoring vessels, are located near Woody’s Restaurant and in Ely’s Harbour, Mill’s Creek, Fairylands Creek, Riddell’s Bay, Lagoon Park, Spanish Point, Mullet Bay and Great Bay.

“Due to a lack of identifying features, Government officers have been unable to locate or contact the owners of many of these abandoned and derelict boats. However, owners of these boats have 30 days from the 17th of January 2024 to remove their vessel from its current location and relocate it to a site that adheres to the provisions of the Merchant Shipping Act 2002, the Marine Board Act 1962, the Marine & Ports Authority [Dumping] Regulations 1967 or any other law of Bermuda.

“Please note that under the Marine & Ports Authority [Dumping] Regulations 1967, the Minister of Transport may direct the disposal of any abandoned vessel that is likely to become unsightly or impede the free navigation of the territorial waters of Bermuda. In doing so, the Minister may direct that the person responsible for the abandonment of the vessel be liable for the costs associated with the disposal of the vessel.

“However, owners of these vessels can identify themselves to the Department of Marine & Ports Services and voluntarily agree to allow the Government to cover the disposal cost by completing and handing in a consent form. Disposal will begin if vessel owners do not identify themselves within 30 days from the 17th of January 2024. Should an owner be determined during this process, they may be liable to pay the disposal cost. Consent forms are available from the Department of Marine & Ports Services and online at gov.bm.

“The boats will be disposed of at the Airport Dump, and the Government will ship any hazardous waste overseas. For more information, please email pollutioncontrol@gov.bm.”

The full Derelict Vessels Sept 2023 details follows below [PDF here]:

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Comments (3)

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  1. 365 says:

    It can be that hard to find out who the registered owners were. If I throw a piece of trash out my car window I will be fined and go to court instantly! But, someone can own a boat and if it sinks whether by storm or neglect is irrelevant. As a boat owner you are responsible for it! It blows my mind that if a boat sinks with gasoline, diesel, oil and possibly a bunch of other chemicals on board, nobody in government ensures it is looked after right away to minimize the impact on marine life. There is no action from marine and ports, marine police, the coast guard, department of the environment, BANZ or any of the other government departments. Im glad this is getting done and thanks you to the person or persons finally stepped up. But how many different people in different departments that are getting paid have pretended they did not see these.

    Also, I never understood how anyone over the age of 16 can buy a boat of any size, with as much horsepower as you can afford with and with no experience and without taking a test and then on day one throw 10 friends on board and go! This needs to be fixed before more people die!

  2. Triangle Drifter says:

    Bermuda, and the current Government in particular, does not care about the environment.

    There is no excuse for derelict boats littering the shores for so long. After a storm the boats that will be salvaged will be removed by owners in very short order by their owners.

    All boats in water should have a Marine and Ports license sticker, current or expired. Marine and Ports should be well aware of unlicensed boats long before a storm and they end up on the rocks.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      Question. Does Marine & Ports have the resources to do as you suggest or are precious Government resources being spent elsewhere?

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