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Old     (getssum)      Join Date: Jul 2005       05-31-2006, 10:09 AM Reply   
On Sunday afternoon I was pulled over by the USCG Auxilliary unit while pulling a surfer who was line-riding. They gave me a warning saying that what we were doing was illegal. I asked them what they thought we were doing, and they said teak surfing, and proceeded to explain that by stating that teak surfing was surfing the wave off the back of the boat. The threat was made that they would just warn us, but if the Sheriff saw, then we would be getting a large ticket.

I proceeded to explain that what we were doing was MUCH different from teak surfing, and that there are no laws against wakesurfing.

Unfortunately, it was like talking to a wall. They said do you know how much carbon monoxide is coming off the boat, right there, to which i said, yes, and the levels are acceptable when the rider is not down on the platform. They said that this wasn't true and that our rider (who was wearing a life vest) was going to die if we kept doing this.

Finally, they said that this was a ticketable offense in the boating safety code. I asked to see the section that specifically mentiones wakesurfing, and they said that they didn't have a copy of the law on their boat.

How do we get people to understand?

Old     (entrustclothing)      Join Date: Jul 2005       05-31-2006, 10:19 AM Reply   
i would have told them to F off and either give me a ticket or stop bothering me, unless they can show you were it says its illegal then they got nothing. i hope you kept surfing after they left.

i'm not one to go against rules, if you were doing something illegal id be the first one telling you that they were right to stop you, but you weren't doing anything wrong so you need to stand up and tell them to piss off!
Old     (bbeach)      Join Date: Jul 2002       05-31-2006, 10:21 AM Reply   
Some people are just FUN HATERS!
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-31-2006, 10:29 AM Reply   
It's frustrating when we, as the participants, must help educate regulators and folks responsible for enforcement, but in fact we must. These two links from the State of California's website are most helpful. I print them out and carry them with us on the boat. The graphic representation promulgated by the Great State of California, is most helpful.

I also have the text of the law...I should find that link too.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-31-2006, 10:43 AM Reply   
Something that might also prove useful is to have a copy of the California's "ABC's of California Boating Law" open to the section under Operational Law "Carbon Monoxide" that states: "Teak surfing or platform dragging means holding onto the swim platform, swim deck, swim step, swim ladder, or any portion of the exterior of the transom of a motorized vessel for any amount of time while the vessel is underway at any speed."

Then, of course, don't be on the swim deck! :-)
Old     (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       05-31-2006, 10:50 AM Reply   
Stop what you're doing for the day; get names, badge numbers, phone numbers, office information, street address, and similar information for superiors in the officer's chain of command. Once you have contact information you can direct a well though out and articulate response. You can probably also get support form folks like Jeff Walker to help load your response with facts.

Do you have the name of the officer that stopped you? If you donít a bet youíre going to face these guys again. If you do you could take an active role in educating the local law enforcement (if thatís what the USCG Aux is).

Itís probably best not to tell an officer to F-off because you might get to spend a little personal time in an 8X10 cell while you cool off, your boat gets towed, and you drop a few bucks in to the legal system. Donít make a lot of noise and cause a scene, instead work the system back on itís self put the factís in front of officials in public meetings where they have to be rational and canít say because I said so.
Old     (stixxmon)      Join Date: May 2006       05-31-2006, 11:50 AM Reply   
The Sheriffs at Shasta have been doing this for years. I went round and round with them when I lived up there. They know it is not illegal but continue to harrass. Many have been. Go up the Pit or Squaw. Stay away from Bridge bay or The Sac arm
Old     (entrustclothing)      Join Date: Jul 2005       05-31-2006, 11:53 AM Reply   
actually unless you are directly threatening an officer you can say anything to them.
Old     (tomcalabria)      Join Date: Feb 2006       05-31-2006, 2:06 PM Reply   
Jeff thanks again for the good information. Also, as Ed stated a well thought out gameplan is necessary. We should not forget that in a state of emergency, we also need these individuals.

I would not give an officer of the law a chance to turn the tables and throw me in jail. I learned my lesson at a young age after spending a night in a Canadian jail cell for giving an officer my opinion. The next morning they released me and said sorry but I still had to spend the night in jail. His power was a little stronger than mine

No, my ass is still a virgin (to prevent any excess e-mails)as I protected myself all night and did not fall asleep.
Old     (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       05-31-2006, 2:28 PM Reply   
Before the 06 season started our water way was threatened by complaints against wakeboard boats made by fishermen and dock owners (property owners lease the right to put up a dock). The city holds an annual waterways review council, one topic was wakeboarding boats on Griggs Reservoir. Many of us collectively researched the complaint, researched the nature of the real problems, over 60 of us met the day before the meeting, we began developing an educate and communicate message, I prepared a 40 slide presentation defending ballasted wakeboarding boats, and about 50 of us attended the water ways meeting. We let the lawyer in the group do most of the talking and kept the presentation and other information in reserve to use only if we needed it. Faced with 20 times the normal public turn out for this meeting the city almost immediately folded and became very supportive of our educate the boaters message.

A thoughtful coordinated approach is more effective than a hot headed one. Another fine example of a thoughtful and coordinated approach to problem solving was Jeffís work with SC to change their wakesurfing/teak surfing safety markings. That effort ended up with Jeff flying over to the Moomba Jamboree and presenting a wakesurf board to Rick Tinker (right?).


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