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 Environment Agency announces new boat registration laws for 2011

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PostSubject: Environment Agency announces new boat registration laws for 2011   Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:10 pm

Chaps, this follows on from what the TAC committee learned at the recent RUGS meeting. Read on....


The Environment Agency is changing the way it regulates boat registration for its waterways across the country.

From January 2011 it will start using new powers to harmonise registration requirements for keeping and using boats on the non-tidal River Thames, the non-tidal River Medway and also its Anglian waterways. Some of these requirements already exist on certain waterways, but for others they are brand new.

The major change across all Environment Agency waterways is owners of powered boats (boats with an engine) will be required to hold a valid ‘third party’ insurance policy. This has been a requirement for some time on most other UK inland waterways.

Boat owners will also need to register their boats and pay the annual charge simply to keep them on the waterways, even if they don’t use them. Owners of most powered boats will have to show they comply with essential safety standards by obtaining a Boat Safety Scheme Certificate (BSSC) in order to register.

These changes will mean new requirements for many boat owners, but they will start to introduce a simpler and more consistent approach to boat registration that customers will welcome, whilst also making the waterways safer.

Roger Goulding, from the Environment Agency, said: “Our waterways are some of the finest places in the country to visit, and these new changes will make them safer for everyone who uses them.

“Boat owners have previously had to comply with different registration systems depending on where they keep or use their boat. Our new powers mean we can bring in a new, clear and consistent approach which makes the system fairer and easier to understand for everyone.

“We have listened to our customers throughout the process and they have told us this is what they want.”

Main changes for the non-tidal River Thames – from 1 January 2011

All owners who keep their boat on the River Thames must register their boat and pay the annual charge, even if they don’t use it. This extends to every part of the waterway including backwaters and marinas. There will be an introductory period from 1 January 2011 until 1 April 2011 to allow owners either to register or remove their boat from the waterway before enforcement action. All powered boat owners also need to hold a valid third party insurance policy.

Main changes for Anglian waterways – from 1 April 2011

All powered boat owners need to hold a valid third party insurance policy.

Main changes for the non-tidal River Medway – from 1 April 2011

All powered boat owners need to hold a valid third party insurance policy.
Most powered boat owners will need to obtain a Boat Safety Scheme Certificate from 1 April 2012.

All boat registration income collected by the Environment Agency is spent on managing and maintaining our waterways for their users. It helps keep structures, such as locks and laybys, in safe working order; helps us provide staff to assist our customers; and helps provide good quality facilities such as moorings, waste disposal and water points.

To find out more about these changes, please see our pages on the Environment Agency website: www.environment-agency.gov.uk/waterwaysorder
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PostSubject: Re: Environment Agency announces new boat registration laws for 2011   Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:52 pm

More on the Thames...


The law governing boat registration and related conditions for our waterways has changed.

Please read this information carefully. It tells you about the main changes in boat registration requirements
for the River Thames from 1 January 2011.

All boats kept on the river must be now be registered

If you keep your boat on the River Thames, you will now need to register it and pay the full annual charge,
even if you do not use it. This requirement extends to every part of the River Thames including backwaters
and marinas.

We will offer an introductory period until 1 April 2011 to give you the opportunity to register your boat or
remove it from river before we take enforcement action. However, we will still take immediate enforcement
action if you use an unregistered boat at any time.

Third party insurance now needed for powered boats

You will now need to show you have third party insurance for a powered boat. This insurance will need to
be for at least one million pounds.

When you apply to register for 2011, we will be asking you to provide us with the name of your insurer,
your policy number and expiry date.

Compliance with construction and equipment standards at all times

You must now make sure your powered boat complies with our construction and equipment standards at
all times - not just when it is used (or let for hire) on the River Thames, but also when it is kept afloat.
Unless you have a private, open outboard-powered boat, you must have either a valid Boat Safety Scheme
Certificate (BSSC) or, for boats up to 4 years old, a valid Declaration of Conformity under the Recreational
Craft Directive when you apply to register for 2011. You will need to submit this with your application if you
are a new applicant or your previous BSSC has expired.

Your BSSC is valid for four years and it is your responsibility to ensure it is always up-to-date. If you renew
your BSSC, you will need to send us a copy straight away; don't wait until you register the following year.
Other requirements
• If you sell your boat it is your responsibility to inform us of the change of ownership, in writing; until you
do so you remain the legal owner of the boat and are responsible for registering it.
• You must display your registration plate on your boat where it is clearly visible to our officers.
• If you own a powered boat, you must mark it clearly with your boat's name.

Boat registration changes

The Environment Agency (Inland Waterways) Order 2010

Offences
The Order has updated our legal powers; you may end up with a criminal record and a fine if:
• You do not register your boat and comply with our registration requirements.
• Your boat does not comply with our construction and equipment standards at any point during the year.
• You do not have a suitable valid insurance policy.
• You do not provide us with change of ownership details or ownership details are incorrect.
• You refuse our officers access to your boat for inspection.
• You do not provide our officers with such information or documents as may be required.

We may refuse to register your boat if you do not comply with our requirements and may cancel an existing
registration in the interest of safety. We may ultimately remove a boat from the waterway if it is not
registered.

'Block' registration - British Canoe Union, British Rowing and British Stand Up Paddling Association
Block registrations are where we have an agreement with another organisation to sell registrations on our
behalf. We are negotiating several new block registrations for 2011.
We are reviewing our agreement with British Canoe Union and have agreed the principles for new
agreements with British Rowing and British Stand Up Paddling Association.
If you are a member of any of these organisations you will be registered to use our waterways (BCU
agreement will cover Canoe England and Canoe Wales members).
Other types of registration - British Waterways Gold Licence
We have amended our agreement with British Waterways to take into account these changes.
If you purchase a Gold licence you will be able to use both British Waterways and Environment Agency
waterways. Make sure you ask for a Gold license; a British Waterways Standard canals & river licence is not
valid on our waterways.

Further changes

We have prioritised the changes for 2011 and discussed timing and implementation with customer
representatives.

We will be carrying out work to look at introducing further changes from 2012 and we will consult
proposals for any further changes with customer group representatives.
If you would like to know more, please visit www.environment-agency.gov.uk/waterwaysorder
Further information – all you need to know

You will find more detailed information about our registration requirements on our registration application
or renewal forms and at www.environment-agency.gov.uk/boatregthames
If you would like further advice on how to register your boat, please contact our craft registration team: call
0118 953 5650, email boatreg@environment-agency.gov.uk or by post to Environment Agency, PO Box 14,
Reading, RG1 8HQ
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PostSubject: Re: Environment Agency announces new boat registration laws for 2011   Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:22 pm

Reminder to all boat owners, new rules as of 1st Jan 2011
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PostSubject: Re: Environment Agency announces new boat registration laws for 2011   Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:36 pm

David Harvey wrote:
Reminder to all boat owners, new rules as of 1st Jan 2011
Thanks for the reminder David just sorting insurance quotes for mine now Steve.
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