33 U.S. Code § 151 - High seas and inland waters demarcation lines
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(a) Establishment and purpose
The Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall establish appropriate identifiable demarcation lines dividing the high seas from harbors, rivers, and other inland waters of the United States, for the purpose of determining the applicability of special navigational rules in lieu of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.
(b) Applicability of other statutes; limitation; position
The Secretary shall also establish appropriate identifiable lines dividing inland waters of the United States from the high seas for the purpose of determining the applicability of each statute that refers to this section or this section, as amended. These lines may not be located more than twelve nautical miles seaward of the base line from which the territorial sea is measured. These lines may differ in position for the purposes of different statutes.
(c) “United States” defined
For the purposes of this section, the term “United States” includes the several States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, and any other Commonwealth, territory, or possession of the United States.
Source(Feb. 19, 1895, ch. 102, § 2,28 Stat. 672; Pub. L. 96–324, § 1,Aug. 8, 1980, 94 Stat. 1020; Pub. L. 96–376, § 13,Oct. 3, 1980, 94 Stat. 1511; Pub. L. 96–591, § 9,Dec. 24, 1980, 94 Stat. 3436.)
References in Text
The International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, referred to in subsec. (a), came into effect pursuant to the Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972. See International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972 note under section 1602 of this title.
Section was not enacted as part of act June 7, 1897, ch. 4, 30 Stat. 96, which comprises a major part of this chapter.
1980—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 96–324designated existing provisions as subsec. (a), substituted provision authorizing the Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating to establish demarcation lines for provision authorizing the Secretary of the Treasury to establish demarcation lines, and inserted provision specifying the purpose of establishing demarcation lines as determining the applicability of special navigational rules in lieu of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.
Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 96–324added subsec. (b).
Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 96–591and Pub. L. 96–376made identical amendments by striking out reference to the Canal Zone.
Pub. L. 96–324added subsec. (c).
Transfer of Functions
For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468 (b), 551 (d), 552 (d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.
Termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands
For termination of Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, see note set out preceding section 1681 of Title 48, Territories and Insular Possessions.
Territorial Sea of United States
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