Boca Grande Pass connects the Gulf with Charlotte Harbor and Peace River, home of Punta Gorda and Fishermen’s Village, both SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSORS! Although one of the widest passes on the Gulf Coast, the safe depth channel is prone to shifting and shoaling.
Since my last email warning of upcoming changes to the Boca Grande Channel, the decision was made to make even more significant changes to the aids to navigation system. Beginning Friday, Feb 12th, The Coast Guard Cutter JOSHUA APPLEBY will be relocating a number of the aids to mark best water. Work should be completed by Feb 15th. We will be upgrading the lighting characteristics to give mariners better visibility at night or in restricted visibility. We will also be reducing the number of floating aids. By moving the channel to the south/southeast and improving the lights, this gave us the opportunity to reduce the number of aids but still adequately and safely mark the Boca Grande Pass, mark the deepest part of the channel, and guide mariners well clear of the shoaling areas. The newly designed channel will also provide a more direct inbound and outbound course. Below is info from upcoming press release. Also below is information from the Weekly Local Notice to Mariners (LNM) identifying the changes to the aids to navigation. Please forward this information to your memberships, alliance members, and other members of the boating public.
“The Coast Guard must redesign the aids to navigation system in the Boca Grande Channel, offshore of Charlotte
County, FL. Due to significant shoaling and changing water depths, the floating aids to navigation currently in place do not mark the best navigable waters.
The waterway is not currently scheduled to be dredged to its federal project depth in the near future. As a result of the decreased water depth, the Coast Guard vessel responsible for maintaining aids to navigation
on this waterway has been unable to reach these buoys for regular maintenance. This creates a greater risk of aids
parting their moorings and floating free, resulting in possible damage to the local ecosystem.
We are redesigning this channel to mark the best navigable water, which is currently the natural channel just southeast of the federal project channel. New buoy configurations and numbering as noted in the Local Notice to
Mariners are part of this redesign and will be forwarded to NOAA’s Office of Coast Survey for nautical chart corrections.”
LNM ADVANCED NOTICE:
FLORIDA – CHARLOTTE HARBOR TO TAMPA BAY -CHARLOTTE HARBOR
The following change has been approved to the Aids to Navigation system in Charlotte Harbor.
Dangerous shoaling exists in the vicinity of the Charlotte Harbor Entrance channel. There are currently no plans by the Army Corps of Engineers to maintain the federal project channel depth of 32 ft. The Coast Guard will be relocating the Aids to Navigation System to better mark the natural channel.
Charlotte Harbor Entrance Lighted Bell Buoy 2 (LLNR 1300/199895) will be permanently discontinued.
Relocate and rename Charlotte Harbor Channel Lighted Buoy 3 (LLNR 19910) to Lighted Buoy 1 in position: 26-40-29.04N, 082-18-45.69W. Change characteristic to Fl G 2.5s.
Relocate and rename Charlotte Harbor Channel Buoy 4 (LLNR 19920) to Lighted Buoy 2 in position: 26-40-24.53N, 082-18-42.76W. Change characteristic to Fl R 2.5s.
Relocate and rename Charlotte Harbor Channel Lighted Buoy 7 (LLNR 19935) to Lighted Buoy 3 in position: 26-41-52.24N, 082-17-49.28W. Change characteristic to Fl G Q.
Relocate and rename Charlotte Harbor Channel Lighted Buoy 8 (LLNR 19940) to Lighted Buoy 4 in position: 26-41-49.95N, 082-17-47.09W. Change characteristic to Fl R Q.
Relocate Charlotte Harbor Channel Lighted Buoy 5 (NEW LLNR 11955) in position: 26-42-20.66N, 082-16-34.44W. Change characteristic to Fl G 4s.
Relocate and rename Charlotte Harbor Channel Lighted Buoy 12 (LLNR 19960) to Lighted Buoy 6 position: 26-42-17.90N, 082-16-33.15W. Change Characteristic to Fl R 4s.
CHART: 11425 11426
US Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg