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FWC issues executive order for boaters

By Staff | Apr 8, 2020

On March 27, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission issued an executive order for recreational vessels in light of the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak, which states that:

– Recreational vessel occupancy is limited to no more than 10 persons per vessel.

– A minimum distance of 50 feet between recreational vessels and any other vessel shall be maintained. This provision does not apply to permitted mooring fields, public or private marinas, or any other permanently installed wet slips, and does not apply to vessels underway unless they are tied, rafted or moored to another vessel.

Vessels that do not follow the requirements constitute a “hazard to public safety.”

Also on March 27, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office reported:

– No “rafting” of watercraft (boats tied together so passengers can pass from vessel to vessel).

The LCSO reported that violators could be issued a fine or subject to arrest.

It also reminded the public that Lee County beaches and beach accesses, state boat ramps and state parks are closed, including Sanibel, Captiva, Cayo Costa, Lover’s Key, Picnic Island and more.

In an effort to promote safety, the LCSO offered the following tips:

– Sanitize your hands after fueling your boat.

– Avoid sharing drinks, rafts, lotion and food.

– Be respectful of others and practice social distancing of at least six feet apart when present at marinas and boat ramps.