46 U.S. Code § 6101. Marine casualties and reporting
Historical and Revision Notes
Source section (U.S. Code)
Section 6101(a) requires the Secretary to prescribe regulations on the types and manner of reporting of marine casualties to be reported under subsection (b) and incidents to be reported under subsection (c). The casualties to be reported must include casualties involving death to an individual, serious injury to an individual, material loss of property, and any damage affecting the seaworthiness or efficiency of the vessel, in addition to the other casualties (if any) the Secretary feels should be reported.
Subsection (b) requires the owner, charterer, agent, master, operator, or individual in charge of a vessel to report within 5 days, any casualty required in subsection (a) or by regulation.
Subsection (c) requires the owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent of a U.S. vessel to immediately determine the status of their vessel if they have not heard from the vessel, if it has not passed a scheduled point, or for any other reason which may indicate the vessel may have been lost or imperiled. If the owner, charterer, managing operator, or agent cannot reach the vessel and determine that it is operating safely, then they shall immediately notify the Coast Guard and provide the Coast Guard with the name and number of the vessel, the names of individuals on board, and any other information that the Coast Guard may request. If communication with the vessel indicates the vessel was involved in a casualty, then the owner, charterer, or agent of the vessel must immediately notify the Coast Guard under subsection (b). Notification to the Coast Guard does not impose or create any additional responsibility for the Coast Guard to take search and rescue action beyond those already existing under title 14, United States Code.
Subsection (d) makes it clear that the reporting requirements under subsection (b) are applicable to foreign vessels involved in a marine casualty when operating on the navigable waters of the United States, whether in innocent passage or not.
Subsection (e) provides for the classification of marine casualties by regulation according to the gravity of the casualty, injuries to individuals, property damage, dangers created, and size, occupation, and means of propulsion of each vessel.
2018—Subsec. (i)(3). Pub. L. 115–265 substituted “$2,000,000” for “$500,000”.
Subsec. (i)(4). Pub. L. 115–232, § 3541(b)(11), struck out “of the Coast Guard” after “Commandant”.
Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 115–232, § 3546(d), struck out “, as soon as possible, and no later than January 1, 2005,” after “The Secretary shall”.
2014—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 113–281, § 312(1), added subsec. (c).
Subsecs. (h), (i). Pub. L. 113–281, § 312(2), in subsec. (h), struck out “(1)” before “The Secretary” and redesignated par. (2) as subsec. (i) and, in subsec. (i), substituted “section” for “paragraph” in introductory provisions and redesignated former subpars. (A) to (D) as pars. (1) to (4), respectively. Former subsec. (i) redesignated (j).
Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 113–281, § 312(3), resesignated subsec. (i) as (j).
2006—Subsecs. (g) to (i). Pub. L. 109–304, § 15(21), which directed amendment identical to that made by Pub. L. 109–241, was repealed by Pub. L. 110–181. See Construction of 2006 Amendment note below.
Pub. L. 109–241 redesignated the second subsec. (g), relating to electronic publishing of marine casualty reports, and subsec. (h) as subsecs. (h) and (i), respectively.
2002—Subsecs. (e), (f). Pub. L. 107–295, § 423(1), redesignated subsec. (e), relating to passenger vessel investigations, as subsec. (f).
Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 107–295, § 442(a), added subsec. (g) relating to electronic publishing of marine casualty reports.
Pub. L. 107–295, § 423(2), added subsec. (g) relating to applicability of this part to a foreign vessel involved in a marine casualty or incident.
Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 107–295, § 442(a), added subsec. (h).
1991—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 102–241 added subsec. (e) relating to passenger vessel investigations.
1990—Subsec. (a)(5). Pub. L. 101–380, § 4106(b)(1), added par. (5).
Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 101–380, § 4106(b)(2), designated existing provisions as par. (1) and added par. (2).
1984—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 98–498, § 212(b)(1)(A), struck out “and incidents” after “marine casualties” in provisions preceding par. (1).
Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 98–557 inserted provisions relating to alcohol as a contributing factor to the casualty.
Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 98–498, § 212(b)(1)(B), struck out subsec. (c) which related to determination of status of a vessel that may be lost or imperiled and notification of the Coast Guard.
Amendment by Pub. L. 101–380 applicable to incidents occurring after Aug. 18, 1990, see section 1020 of Pub. L. 101–380, set out as an Effective Date note under section 2701 of Title 33, Navigation and Navigable Waters.
Provisions of Pub. L. 109–304 repealed by section 3529(c)(1) of Pub. L. 110–181 to be treated as if never enacted, see section 3529(c)(2) of Pub. L. 110–181, set out as a note under section 9504 of Title 26, Internal Revenue Code.
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.