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OCR for page 122
Issues in Ferry Service Management and Operation 125 terminal should be in a dense, mixed-use location that allows many of the ferry passengers to simply walk to the ferry ter- New York Guidelines for Urban Ferry Services minal. By design, mixed-use, dense neighborhoods create internal walking trips rather than the external automobile The New York metropolitan area is transit rich, with trips often generated in traditional suburban neighbor- high ridership and many transit options. In the past hoods. Also, passengers that access the ferry from more dis- 25 years, ferries have, mainly through trial and tant neighborhoods should be encouraged to use transit error, evolved into a unique market niche in the rather than driving. New York metropolitan area. Public agencies in the area are developing a documented paradigm for Developing timed transfers from ferries to landside tran- New York Harbor Ferries. Within this paradigm, sit is a critical component for ferry commuters. Timed ferries are a transit service transfers reduce overall travel commute times and increase the perception of reliability, thereby building commuter For areas that have few or poor transit options. confidence in the overall transit network. Ferries often oper- That is supplemental to overburdened parallel ate on longer headways than rail transit or bus services, so systems. being able to time a trip is a benefit for ferry commuters or That may require modest public subsidies not any ferry passenger. exceeding other transit modes. That provides a time savings relative to other New York offers a good example of a well-designed bus alternatives. and rail feeder system that provides both route and tempo- That serves land uses that can create enough ral coordination. Ferries serve as feeders to the rail system, demand to use the vessels efficiently. and the rail and bus systems feed the ferries. New York Available for emergency response. Waterway, at the Hoboken commuter rail terminal, pro- vides the "last mile" link to several locations in Manhattan. When agencies or private operators consider start- The ferry schedule is designed to provide minimal waits for ing urban ferry services, it would be appropriate to arriving and departing rail passengers; ferry schedules are consider these factors as part of due diligence. even listed on the rail schedules as identified connections. In addition, in Manhattan, a dedicated bus fleet provides free timed and coordinated distribution for ferry passengers. As a result, the system is coordinated geographically, temporally and by fare, creating a seamless experience for passengers. In Seattle, the ORCA Card, a regional smart card, offers the Puget Pass, which combines a bus pass with a ferry monthly pass, eliminating different fare media. Regulatory and Safety Requirements The U.S. federal government and numerous states have released new laws in recent years that directly and indirectly affect the ferry industry in the United States. Many of the regulations are still being written or refined. As a result, operators may not be clear on actual intent as they attempt to conform to those regulations. As regulations continue to shift, it is important that all operators of ferry services in the United States, public and private, large and small, keep abreast of the changes they will be required to make once laws take effect. Operators should be aware that issues pertaining to ferries can be contained within U.S. state and federal air quality regulations, U.S. Coast Guard regulations, security requirements, landing rights and insurance. State and Federal Air Quality Regulations In the United States, EPA has addressed small marine emissions through changes in the fuel mix and improvements in the engines. EPA now requires that marine diesel fuel have a 99-percent reduction in sulfur content compared to 2004. In March 2008, EPA finalized a three-part pro- gram to reduce particulate matter emissions from marine diesel engines by about 90 percent and

OCR for page 122
126 Guidelines for Ferry Transportation Services NOx emissions by almost 80 percent when fully implemented. These new engine standards will be gradually implemented over the next decade. State and federal water quality regulations are also now applied to ferry operations in the United States. For many years, EPA did not regulate discharges from ships under the Clean Water Act. But federal courts have ordered EPA to enforce the Clean Water Act, primarily due to ballast water resulting in the introduction of invasive species such as zebra mussels and the round goby in the Great Lakes and other U.S. waterways. As a result, some ferry discharge oper- ations have come under EPA review (the most current case involves coal waste discharge from the S.S. Badger in Lake Michigan). U.S. Coast Guard Regulations U.S. Coast Guard approval is always required for the operation of for-hire passenger vessels. Title 46 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) contains regulatory requirements applicable to the design, construction, and operation of ferries operating in U.S. waters. Smaller ferries (less than 150 passengers) are regulated under Subchapter T and have less stringent security and safety requirements. Larger ferries are regulated in Subchapter K. The High-Speed Craft (HSC) Code was adopted in 1994 by the International Maritime Organization to provide regulations for high- speed (low-displacement) craft. The U.S. Coast Guard accepts compliance with the HSC Code as equivalent to compliance with the regulations in Subchapter K of Title 46 CFR. The HSC safety philosophy is based on the management and reduction of risks while recognizing that additional hazards exist for high-speed craft compared with a conventional ship. Whichever code or regulation is used, ferries are required to be periodically inspected, to oper- ate within the terms contained in a U.S. Coast Guard Certificate of Inspection, and to be in the charge of a person possessing a license as Master, with gross tonnage restrictions dependent on the type of vessel. The Coast Guard inspects vessels to ensure compliance with federal regulations. Certificates of Inspection are issued to inspect vessels once they are deemed to be in compliance with appli- cable regulations. Prior to an initial inspection, the Coast Guard reviews vessel plans that include the following: Midship section Arrangement of decks Outboard profile Inboard profile Machinery installation Electrical installation Fuel tanks Piping systems Hull penetrations operation and shell connections Marine sanitation device installation Steering system diagram U.S. federal law also requires that a commercial ferry must be documented, unless it is used solely within the U.S. Virgin Islands. Vessel documentation is a national form of registration. Documentation requires the demonstration of ownership of the vessel, U.S. citizenship (indi- vidual, corporate, or other entity), and evidence that the vessel was built in the United States. Security Requirements In the United States, the Coast Guard and TSA both regulate security on ferries.