33 CFR 401.29 - Maximum draft.
(a) Notwithstanding any provision herein, the loading of cargo, draft and speed of a vessel in transit shall be controlled by the master, who shall take into account the vessel's individual characteristics and its tendency to list or squat, so as to avoid striking bottom.
(b) The draft of a vessel shall meet a minimum draft requirement as defined at inspection on the ESI form and not, in any case, exceed 79.2 dm or the maximum permissible draft designated in a Seaway Notice by the Manager and the Corporation for the part of the Seaway in which a vessel is passing.
(c) Any vessel equipped with an operational Draft Information System (DIS) verified by a member of the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) as compliant with the Implementation Specifications found at http://www.greatlakes-seaway.com and having onboard the items listed in paragraphs (c)(1) through (5) of this section will be permitted, when using the DIS, subject to paragraph (a) of this section, to increase their draft by no more than 7 cm above the maximum permissible draft prescribed under paragraph (b) of this section in effect at the time:
(1) An operational AIS with accuracy = 1 (DGPS); and
(2) Up-to-date electronic navigational charts; and
(3) Up-to-date charts containing high-resolution bathymetric data, and
(4) The DIS Display shall be located as close to the primary conning position and be visible and legible; and
(5) A pilot plug, if using a portable DIS.
(d) Verification document of the DIS must be kept on board the vessel at all times and made available for inspection.
(e) A company letter attesting to officer training on use of the DIS must be kept on board and made available for inspection.
(f) Any vessel intending to use the DIS must notify the Manager or the Corporation in writing at least 24-hours prior to commencement of its initial transit in the System with the DIS.
(g) Any vessel intending to use the DIS to transit at a draft greater than the maximum permissible draft prescribed under paragraph (b) of this section in effect at the time, for subsequent transits must fax a completed confirmation checklist found at www.greatlakes-seaway.com to the Manager or the Corporation prior to its transit.
(h) If for any reason the DIS or AIS becomes inoperable, malfunctions, or is not used while the vessel is transiting at a draft greater than the maximum permissible draft prescribed under paragraph (b) of this section in effect at the time, the vessel must notify the Manager or the Corporation immediately.