Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river? - SailNet Community

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Old 08-17-2013
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Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

OK, so it's time to ask a question that I've often wondered about.

Our marina has several year-round liveaboards - a few on sailboats, and a couple more on motorboats. These boats NEVER leave the marina. Based on the appearance of the boats, they may not be able to go anywhere.

The people on these boats range from almost-homeless to normal, working guys trying to live a minimalist lifestyle. The normal guys are nice people, and they help the security of the marina because they're always around.

I would never ask this question to their faces, because I don't want to stir up trouble, but I do wonder what these guys do with their holding tanks. Our marina's pumpout is at the gas dock (can't come to your slip), and it rarely works anyway due to improper installation (always loses its prime because the pump is 150' away from the end of the hose).

I just suspect that these guys open their T-valves when the river current is ripping through.

So what do you think? Do any of you have liveaboards that never leave the marina? What do you suspect that they do?
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Old 08-17-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

That's illegal. You are making an unfounded assumption if you haven't done your homework thoroughly.

Do they have Electrasans?

In our club we do have a portable pump out but mot of the 10 liveaboards have Electrasans. In some areas they are not omitted either.

Also a compostable head would not require a pumpout.
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Old 08-17-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

I guess it's not impossible, but I've been living aboard for about four years now in a couple of different marinas and have never heard anyone say they did, or caught anyone at it. The active fleet of mobile pump-out services around here would also seem to indicate compliance... I mean, why pay for the service and still dump overboard?

Also, at least where we are right now, it seems like most folks, most of the time, use the shore-side restrooms. That would reduce the rate at which their tanks are being used, anyway.

Finally, although it clearly doesn't make it right, even if some of them are doing it, whatever they are, uh, contributing, pales in comparison to the various sewage overflows the city dumps into lakes and the Sound during the winter storm overflows.
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Old 08-17-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

Just having this discussion about a neighboring marina that allows year round liveaboards. Ours doesn't. Once the marina is winterized, we were wondering what they do. No pump out even available. Possible they have composters, but I somehow doubt it. We weren't even 100% sure that shoreside facilities were functional in freezing temps.

I make no bones about objecting to ridiculous discharge laws that just make tree huggers feel good about themselves. However, discharging in a confined harbor is just stupid and inconsiderate.
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Old 08-18-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

In clear lake Texas, yes, a lot.
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Old 08-18-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

Our local A&E paper recently had an article about year-round liveaboards. Now, this is Minnesota so we're talking -20ºF in the winter.

-------
On a boat, toilets don't flush the way they do in a condo. Instead, every few weeks, residents hook up a hose to their sewage tanks to "pump out." And one balmy November, someone on the dock forgot to drain the pump when he was done. The next person who went to use it found it frozen.

"We put propane heaters around it, we did everything we could," says Cherveny. "But nothing worked."

Until a brief February warm spot two months later, no one could use the bathroom in their house, and a line of live-aboards ran down the block to the Holiday first thing every morning.
-------

The Real Houseboats of the Mississippi - - News - Minneapolis - City Pages

These are all powerboats of course. And I bet a few don't even have power....
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Old 08-18-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

While in the marina, I use the marina facilities. Not as convenient, but still more convenient than going to the pump out. What doesn't go in the holding tank doesn't have to come out of the holding tank.
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Old 08-18-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

Up here in wintertime the mobile pumpout cart doesn't operate, and its not like you can motor your boat to the pumpout slip by the gas dock because the river is iced in. That's when the old fashioned bag and bucket technique comes into play (not for the squeamish!)

OTOH, we have at least one liveaboard here who never seems to use the pumpout cart in summertime, and her boat doesn't move under its own power. Given her lack of consideration for her neighbors in other ways, such as clutter on the docks, I suspect I know where her waste goes, all I can say is I'm glad we're upstream...
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Old 08-18-2013
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
I make no bones about objecting to ridiculous discharge laws that just make tree huggers feel good about themselves. However, discharging in a confined harbor is just stupid and inconsiderate.
Like the rules or hate them, I am glad for them. Having lived on the water since I was an infant (father was navy) I can remember when marinas all smelled like cesspools.

That said, friends of mine lived aboard their 33' Owens all summer until I was about 1990. Their boat had no working engines and no holding tanks. Yes, they pumped right over the side and never got caught
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Re: Do marina liveaboards dump their s@!^ in the river?

The discussion isn't really about he laws..that would drift the thread.

For those who live aboard here we have winter water when the snow hits. These water lines are kept in the water and can be fished out to provide filll ups for the live aboards.

Also our portable pumpout, which was partially state funded rolls easily down the dock and holds 100 gallons. So there is no excuses to empty your waste into the public water . Our liveaboards are required to either have Electrasans, composting heads, or provide proof through the portable pumpout, they are using it.

Failure to comply with any of these gets them booted out, and we monitor this.
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