Our readers asked and we are answering! In this new section of The Log, staff answers your questions about boating and fishing related topics around Southern California. Have a question you’d like us to answer in an upcoming issue? Email us at email@example.com
RE: “New civilian boating channel opens in Anaheim Bay” (Jan. 22-Feb. 4)
Q: Previously Jet skies were restricted. Can we now Drive jet skis out to the ocean from the harbor?
A: Despite the new civilian boating channel opening in Anaheim Bay – which connects Huntington Harbour with the Pacific Ocean – a federal regulation still restricts jet skis and human-powered crafts, such as kayaks. Gregg Smith, the public affairs officer at Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach, said the regulation was put in place by the federal government due to safety concerns back in the 1960s or 70s because the channel was fairly narrow and there were safety concerns with having small watercraft in the same narrow channel with much larger vessels.
With the new channel 25 percent wider than the old channel and separated from Navy vessel traffic, it is possible this regulation could change. Smith said in order for that to happen, the Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, and Army Corps of Engineers will need to assess the safety of the new channel. As long as everybody concurs that it is safe for those types of crafts, then they can petition for the federal law to be changed.
Q: Continuously since the year of my birth in 1938 in San Pedro, I’ve been sailing out of L.A. Harbor – countless hundreds of times – except for three years or so during World War II when sailing outside the Harbor was forbidden. Over recent weeks we’ve observed more and more huge container ships anchored off shore outside the long breakwater; last Saturday I counted about 31 anchored ships, many of them seemed to be fully loaded with containers. In my long experience, I’ve never before seen anywhere near the numbers of anchored ships as are out there nowadays. What’s going on? Why are they all anchored out there and not entering the Harbor as in normal?
A: Since late 2020, a surge in cargo volume has resulted in ships idling outside the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach waiting to unload or load. The boom of cargo imports coincided with a COVID-19 outbreak among Longshore workers at the twin ports, exacerbating delays.
Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka said in a Nov. 18, 2020 video update, imports have broken new records on a monthly basis and in a Jan.14 statement said a late-year surge of consumer spending made 2020 the fourth highest-volume year in the Port of Los Angeles’ history. To read more from The Log on this, visit bit.ly/39RYU4t.
The International Longshore and Warehouse Union reported on Feb. 2, at least 1,068 ILWU workers on the West Coast reported testing positive for COVID-19, and at least 12 have died from the virus.
State Senator Lena Gonzalez, State Assembly-member Patrick O’Donnell, Congressman Alan Lowenthal, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia, Los Angeles Councilmember Joe Buscaino, and Long Beach Councilmember Cindy Allen wrote to Gov. Gavin Newsom on Jan. 12 asking to prioritize port workers for the COVID-19 vaccine.
“As we continue to weather the current COVID-19 surge, especially in Southern California, port workers contracting COVID-19 could have disastrous consequences for the movement of goods, food, and medical supplies that Californians are depending upon in this time of crisis… Moreover, emergency regulations recently promulgated by California’s Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board could further exacerbate constraints on critical supply chains if workers fall ill by requiring continuous testing of all employees and taking exposed individuals out of the workforce,” they wrote in the letter.
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