Wednesday, December 16th, boaters are invited to hear the program described below, and have a buffet lunch at Newport Harbor Yacht Club's weekly "Yachtsman's Luncheon". All are welcome. Luncheon ($13 all inclusive) starts at noon, at NHYC, 720 West Bay Avenue, Balboa, CA (Balboa Peninsula near 8th Street)
Why come now? A very good reason: There is a once in decades opportunity for Newport Harbor boaters to weigh in what type of "Aid to Navigation" should be chosen to replace existing fixed aid # 8 (Located in the open water marking the harbor channel, midway between Mooring Fields "A" and "B", between Balboa Peninsula and Balboa Island).
Why care? Safety. All six lighted navigation aids in Newport Harbor used to be floating buoys but were replaced some years ago with lights on large fixed poles with substantial upper superstructures. # 8 is widely regarded by boaters as a significant hazard to navigation in the harbor. It has been hit many times with damage resulting to it and boats and reportedly some injuries. Finally it has now been hit by such a large vessel that it was damaged beyond repair and must be replaced. But with what type - fixed or floating?
Calls from local boater Carter Ford to the U S Coast Guard found them very interested and responsive. The Coast Guard has posted this topic in the "Notice to Mariners". They also are seeking face–to–face community input to help ascertain what type of replacement buoy or structure would be feasible and best suit local needs. There are varied options that can be considered.
Chief Jeff Ruggieri, Officer in Charge of Aids to Navigation Team - Los Angeles/Long Beach, has a wealth of knowledge on this subject and will be the guest speaker at the Wednesday luncheon meeting on December 16th at Newport Harbor Yacht Club. For further information you can call Carter Ford, 949-723-0400. Reservations are not required but are appreciated and can be made by calling NHYC at 949-673-7730 Wednesday through Sunday.
Enjoy the company of many of your boating friends, a good lunch, an interesting talk and a lively Q & A session, Noon, Wednesday, 16th December 2009 PST. The luncheon will conclude around 1:30 PM, 16th December 2009 PST.
Channel Marker #8 Update
The USCG has confirmed that it will solicit bids from local contractors for removal of the damaged and dangerous channel marker #8. This was reported by Harbor Resources Manager Chris Miller at the March 2010 Harbor Commission meeting. The red floating marker now adjacent to the bent–over steel piling will remain to indicate the channel boundary. The local USCG office can approve bids up to US $5,000 for this sort of maintenance issue without extensive red tape so it encourages contractors who can remove the steel piling to submit proposals for this work.