All you anti Sat phone or SSB users beware! - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 56 Old 03-01-2008 Thread Starter
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All you anti Sat phone or SSB users beware!

Just pulled this off another Forum

The Log.com News


Got any inside scoop for us Wombat?
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post #2 of 56 Old 03-01-2008
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Sounds alot like traffic court right here in the good old USA.

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post #3 of 56 Old 03-01-2008
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Unfortunately, Australia has been doing some really whacked things with respect to their new immigration notification policies...

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post #4 of 56 Old 03-02-2008 Thread Starter
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That could really

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Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Unfortunately, Australia has been doing some really whacked things with respect to their new immigration notification policies...
That could really put most cruisers on the rocks so to speak...cruising funds wise that is..

I was hoping tdw had some more info on it...maybe they got off a little easier.
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post #5 of 56 Old 03-02-2008
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New Zealand is a lot softer

We arrived in NZ with a boat full of flat batteries, no engine power and only a hand held 5w VHF (we still had a satphone working)

Whilst it never ended in a court case or fine (probably because we're permanent residents in NZ), we got a written warning from Customs for not advising them of our arrival 48 hours in advance.

The fact that we had been in 3-day continuous contact with Maritime NZ, the NZ CoastGuard and the harbour master didn't carry any weight.

And we also couldn't help wondering how it was that when we arrived in the marina, the Customs man, the MAF man and the Immigration man were all waiting on the slip.

Maybe the fact that the skipper of the yacht into Aus allegedly told them that he had come from Noumea, South Africa contributed to the suspicion. He was about 8000 miles out. Noumea is in New Caledonia in the Pacific.

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post #6 of 56 Old 03-02-2008
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In defence of the authorities

I know I shouldn't but . . . . .

Whenever you sign out from any Pacific Island and are destined for New Zealand or Australia, the harbour master will hand you a folder which details the entire procedure, the forms to complete and will often even allow you to fax the required docs to wherever they should go from his office.

When we left Raratonga for NZ we we given everything we needed to do the right thing and we didn't. So really we got what we deserved.

The skipper that arrived in Aus would have got the same stuff in New Caledonia.

FWIW

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post #7 of 56 Old 03-02-2008 Thread Starter
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Andre

We are getting tighter here for sure..but as of last summer you could still enter a harbor here in the Northwest basically any time you wanted you just could not set foot on land or a dock, or transfer vessels...

Coming into Roach Harbor last year from Canada there was a line up of maybe 15 boats trying to clear customs...after jocking around for half a hour and still a dozen or so boats ahead of us.. we just headed for an anchorage spent the night and came back at 8:OO am ...we were the only boat trying to clear at that time...All was OK ...

The US/Canadian border has been traditionally friendly however and this is my only basis of experience...I will do some research on it as things are changing fast..
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post #8 of 56 Old 03-02-2008
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According to Noonsite, the current Aussie clearance requirements are:

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By law the captain must give notice of arrival at least 96 hours before arrival. This can be done by: sending an email to yachtreport@customs.gov.au or sending a fax to +61 2 6275 6331 or phoning the Australian Customs National Communications Centre on +61 3 9244 8979 (until Saturday 24 March 2007). From 25 March 2007 until further notice, telephone Customs on + 61 3 9600 3604. Those who do not have onboard email should do it from the last port and request confirmation by email from the Australian authorities. The confirmation should be printed and kept for reference. Since this new regulation came into force in 2006 several yacht captains have been taken to court for failure to comply with this regulation.

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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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post #9 of 56 Old 03-02-2008
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Australia has an immigration/customs regulation that states any incoming vessel must notify Australian Customs no later than 96 hours prior to that impending arrival. Such notification is to made by fax, email or ssb radio. I may be wrong but I didn't think even a telephone was an acceptable form of communication and Customs say that as they don't monitor VHF only SSB is good enough.

From what I understand of this situation there are conflicting stories. The Manzaris claim that the Australian authorities in Noumea told them that the reporting period was 48 hours while the authorities claim they were fully informed of the 96 hour period. Nonetheless the information is required to be on a specific form, it would appear that no form of verbal communication would be sufficient. I do find it somewhat odd that anyone intending to arrive in a foreign country by yacht would not go to the trouble of obtaining all relevent information, fill out the required forms and have those forms approved before they sail.

Now had the Manzaris followed basic procedure they could have emailed or faxed their notification from Noumea and all would have been well. Instead they chose to lob into Oz without any warning and then claimed that they had received incorrect advice. I believe they were unable to provide the offending document.

Ok, on the other side of the coin, the brain dead morons who have been running this country for the past ten years, went, like so many other countries completely over the top regarding supposed homeland security after a certain incident in NYC a few years back. We have now changed to a new bunch of brain dead morons who may, MAY I SAY, behave a little more rationally but to be honest I doubt it.

I do not approve of these silly regulations, draconian is the word that comes to mind but as I am constantly reminded we live in a post 9/11 world. It seems to me that notifying immigration/customs of impending arrival by VHF radio within , say, 24 hours should be sufficient for anyone but rules are rules and these guys did ignore said rules completely, hoping I suspect that looking apologetic and promising not to do it again would suffice. Bit of a bugger for them but there you go.

One other thing, it is not uncommon for incoming yachts to land in one of Australia's unpopulated areas and not actually clear into the country for many weeks after they have actually arrived. Ignoring the somewhat silly security aspects the main concern for me here is the possible infestation of otherwise pristine environments with foreign marine organisms.

Patrolling a coastline as large as ours with as small a population as we have is bloody difficult at the best of times. Perhaps it is the difficulty of such patrolling that makes the authorities jump heavily on anyone caught infringing the rules, particularly when they appear to have little excuse for doing so.

BTW, these rules have been in force since 2006 and in that time I believe their have been only two such incidents resulting in court proceedings. How many incidents there have been that have resulted in nothing more than a slap on the wrist I do not know.

edit - all this information is readily available on the Australian Immigration Departments web site.

edit the second - couple of points. don't shoot the messenger
I think this regulation sucks. Also if Peter Russo took the case then I tend to think they were hard done by as he is a good man. I was also wrong in saying only two cases had gone to court, in fact it was three.

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post #10 of 56 Old 03-02-2008
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Ignoring the somewhat silly security aspects the main concern for me here is the possible infestation of otherwise pristine environments with foreign marine organisms.


You talkin' about the organisms UNDER the boat or ON the boat???


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