Coast Guard sets waterway restrictions for July 4 fireworks

JULY 2, 2014—Commercial vessel operators and boaters operating in New York Harbor or just looking to get a good view of the Macy’s Fourth of July fireworks, should be aware of the operating restrictions imposed by The Captain of the Port New York in the waters around Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Governors Island, NY.

The Captain of the Port New York (COTP) will strictly enforce a regulated area on the waters of the Upper New York Bay in the vicinity of Ellis Island and Liberty Island for viewing the Liberty State Park Fourth of July Fireworks Display from 6 p.m., until about 11 p.m., Friday, July 4.

All spectator vessels may enter the designated viewing area at 8 p.m., and no later than 9 pm., Vessels shall be required to hold position, not at anchor and not depart the section until released by the on-scene Coast Guard Patrol Commander. This information will be broadcasted via VHF-FM Channel 13 and 16.

All spectator vessels shall maintain a 100-yard distance from any Coast Guard vessel at anchor, at all times.

In addition, the COTP has established enforce a regulated area on the waters of the East River, Buttermilk Channel and Upper N.Y. Bay in the vicinity of Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Governors Island, NY for viewing the annual Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Display from 8 p.m., until approximately 11 p.m., on Friday.

All spectator vessels may enter the designated viewing area at 8 p.m., and no later than 9 p.m. Vessels shall be required to hold position, not at anchor and not depart the section until released by the on-scene Coast Guard Patrol Commander. This information will be broadcasted via VHF-FM Channel 13 and 16.

All spectator vessels shall maintain a 100-yard distance from any Coast Guard vessel at anchor at all times.

The regulated area will be divided into the following five sections:

CHARLIE Section: No vessel movements are authorized in this section after 6 p.m. without permission from the Coast Guard. This section is intended to accommodate fireworks display barges and accompanying tug boats only. The Charlie section is made up of all waters south of a line drawn from Jefferson Street, Manhattan, to Pearl Street, Brooklyn, and north of a line drawn from Battery Park, Manhattan, to the Governors Island Ferry Slip, and Governors Island, to Pier 8, Brooklyn, Commercial passenger vessels that need to transit through the Charlie Section en route to their designated viewing areas must receive authorization from the Coast Guard Patrol Commander via VHF Channel 13. Commercial passenger vessels must pass as close to the pier head line as possible and must transit through the zone no later than 7:30 p.m. Vessels must operate at the minimum speed necessary to maintain safe course while crossing through the Charlie Section and take all direction that may be provided by the Coast Guard.

ALPHA Section: All vessels less than 65 feet in length may view the fireworks on all waters of this designated area. This zone is defined by a line drawn from Grand Street, Manhattan, to 8th Street, Brooklyn, and a line drawn from the most northeastern corner of Pier 42, Manhattan, to Little Street, Brooklyn.  

BRAVO Section: This zone is adjacent to the Charlie Section. All vessels more than 65 feet in length may view the fireworks on all waters of this designated area. This zone is defined by a line drawn from the most northeastern corner of Pier 42, Manhattan, to Little Street, Brooklyn, and a line drawn from Jefferson Street, Manhattan, to Pearl Street, Brooklyn.

DELTA Section: This zone is adjacent to the Charlie Section. All vessels more than 65 feet in length may view the fireworks on all waters of this designated area. This zone is defined by a line drawn from Battery Park, Manhattan, south to the Governors Island Ferry Slip, then south along the shoreline of Governors Island to its southernmost point, then north to position 40°42’2.8”N, 074° 01’39.5”W and then east to the point of origin, Battery Park, Manhattan.

ECHO Section: All vessels less than 65 feet in length may view the fireworks in this designated viewing area. This zone is defined by a line drawn from the Battery Tunnel Ventilator, Governors Island, to Pier 8, Brooklyn, and a line drawn from the southernmost point of Governors Island, to Red Hook Point, Brooklyn.

Tugboats, towing and commercial vessels not observing the fireworks must be outside of the regulated area no later than 6:30 p.m.

The COTP will establish a moving safety zone within a 100-yard radius of each fireworks barge transiting between Navy Homeport Pier and the display location. Enforcement of the moving safety zone will be in effect while the fireworks barges are in transit to and from the Navy Homeport Pier.