Delta Abandoned Vessel Removal
The 1992 Delta Protection Act (PRC 29760(d)) requires the Commission to prepare, with other agencies, a strategy for the implementation of a coordinated marine patrol system throughout the Delta that will preserve, protect and maintain navigation. Abandoned vessels, a recurring problem in the Delta, pose a safety risk for swimmers, fishermen and other boaters as well as polluting the rivers and sloughs with fuel, oil, and other debris.
The Commission works with local law enforcement Marine Patrol units, the U.S. Coast Guard, State Parks’ Division of Boating and Waterways, State Lands Commission, Recreational Boaters of California, the Bay Conservation and Development Commission, and other stakeholders to promote and facilitate abandoned vessel removal.
Reporting Abandoned Vessels in Your Delta County
To report an abandoned vessel please fill out and fax this form (PDF) to the U.S. Coast Guard or contact the Marine Patrol Units for the specific Delta county. For more information on the Marine Patrol Units for each of the five Delta Counties, please refer to the web links below:
Abandoned and Derelict Vessels in the Delta
(from 2017 aerial survey)
by Mitch Goode, Fish and Wildlife Officer, CA Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, Office of Spill Prevention and Response at the November 16, 2017 Commission meeting.
Background Documents and Resources
Below is the Commission’s initial Background Report on Marine Patrol, Boater Education and Safety, as well as a more recent article
in the McGeorge School of Law Review describing changes in legislation streamlining the removal of abandoned vessels:
- Boaters Beware: Chapter 595 Anchors State Lands Commission’s Vessel Removal Power, Colin Roberts, January 2013 (PDF)
For information on partner agencies and funding opportunities see the web links below:
- Assembly Bill (AB) 2441, introduced by Assemblymember (and former Commission member) Jim Frazier, was chaptered in September 2018. AB 2441 requires the State Lands Commission (SLC) to develop a plan for the removal of abandoned commercial vessels for lands in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Delta) no later than July 1, 2019. The plan must prioritize removal based on risk to the Delta and must be implemented by the SLC upon receipt of funds appropriated by the Legislature and any federal or private funds for this purpose.
- Signed into law in 2015, AB 1323 (Frazier) authorizes the immediate removal of marine debris (subject to certain conditions) that constitutes a public nuisance or a danger to navigation, health, safety or the environment. Read more about this important provision of the Harbors and Navigation Code.