RULES and REGULATIONS Part 646
Statutory authority: Environmental Conservation Law Sections 43-0107 (8)&(32), 43-0115 (3), and 43-0117 (4), Navigation Law Section 44-a (not subdivided)
SPECIAL NAVIGATIONAL RULES
(Statutory authority: Environmental Conservation Law Sections 43-0117 (4) and 43-0107 (8) and (32))
646-2.1 General Purpose
646-2.5 Regulation of Specific Recreational Activities
646-2.6 Miscellaneous Provisions Relating to Certain
646-2.7 Speed Limits
646-2.8 Noise Limits
646-2.9 Restricted Use Zones
Section 646-2.1 General Purpose. The purpose of this Subpart is to regulate recreational activities in or on the waters of Lake George in order to protect the public health, safety and welfare, to provide reasonable public access to Lake George without overcrowding, congestion or safety hazards, to reduce noise and to protect the resources of the Park.
Section 646-2.2 Applicability. This Subpart establishes rules and guidelines for specific recreational activities, craft, vessels and devices and for all new recreational activities for both commercial and private use. Additional regulations for commercial recreational activities (all activities conducted or offered for the purpose of realizing a profit) are found in Subpart 646-1 of this Title.
Section 646-2.3 Definitions.
(a) The following terms shall have the stated meanings whenever used in this Subpart and Subpart 646-1 of this Title or in documents referenced or prepared by the Commission. Other terms defined in Section 645-2.1 of this Title shall have the meanings set forth in that Section.
(1) New Recreational Activity or Use - means a recreational activity not introduced on the waters of Lake George as of January 1, 1991.
(2) Parasailing - means the use of equipment including a parasail and or chute or similar device, harness, vest, tow craft, take-off and landing craft or similar craft for the purposes of engaging in air-sailing over the waters of Lake George.
(3) Personal Watercraft - (PWC) means a vessel which uses an inboard motor powering a water jet pump as its primary source of motive power and which is designed to be operated by a person sitting, standing, or kneeling on, or being towed behind the vessel rather than in the conventional manner of sitting or standing inside the vessel.
(4) Scuba Diving - means swimming totally submerged with the assistance of a self-contained underwater breathing apparatus and air supply.
(5) Seaplane - means any aircraft capable of using a water surface for take-off or landing.
(6) Take-off and Landing Craft - shall mean any boat, barge, raft or vessel used as a take-off or landing point for parasails or similar devices.
(7) Tour Boat - shall mean any ship, boat, vessel or craft used for the commercial purpose of conveying passengers for a fee.
(8) Tour Guide - shall mean an experienced and skilled operator of a PWC employed and empowered to direct and command other operators who are part of a group or tour.
(9) Tow Craft - shall mean any vessel, craft or device used to pull aloft a parasail.
(10) Towing - shall mean all those activities where a person, craft or device is pulled or drawn behind another vessel.
Section 646-2.4 Permits. No person shall operate or engage in any new recreational activity or use without first obtaining a special permit from the commission pursuant to Subpart 646-1 of this Title.
Section 646-2.5 Regulation of Specific Recreational
(a) Personal Water Craft (PWC).
(1) All persons operating PWC upon the waters of Lake George shall comply with the following requirements in addition to all navigational laws and other regulations of the Lake George Park Commission:
(i) A PWC may be operated only between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. or sunset whichever is earlier.
(ii) No person shall operate a PWC within five hundred (500) feet from the outer boundaries of a designated swimming or mooring area.
(iii) No person shall operate a PWC within five hundred (500) feet of shore at a speed greater than five (5) miles per hour except that such five (5) mile per hour speed limit shall not apply to a PWC operator operating at safe headway speed in a straight line to or from shore or to or from an area five hundred (500) feet from shore.
(iv) No person shall operate a PWC on the waters of Lake George so as to knowingly annoy, disturb, injure or endanger the health, comfort, repose or peace of another person.
(v) No person shall operate a PWC on the waters of Lake George which was manufactured on or after January 1, 1991 with an exhaust system which has been altered in any way from the original manufacturer's equipment.
(vi) On or after January 1, 1992 no person shall operate a PWC on the waters of Lake George if such PWC produces a sound level greater than that of the original manufacturers specifications for that PWC, but in no event shall a PWC operate on the waters of Lake George if such PWC exceeds the sound limits set forth in Section 646-2.8 of this Title.
(2) Accidents involving PWC shall be reported in writing by the owner or operator to the Commission or other law enforcement agency within forty-eight (48) hours after such accident.
Section 646-2.6 Miscellaneous Provisions Relating
to Certain Recreational Activities.
(a) Scuba Diving
(1) No person shall scuba dive in a navigable channel or in any location in which it will interfere with free and safe navigation or free access to another person's property. For the purpose of these rules, navigable channels shall mean areas in which boats are restricted in operation due to passage between points of land or, areas in which navigation aids are located.
(2) No person shall scuba dive in the waters of Lake George so as to knowingly annoy, disturb, injure or endanger the health, comfort, repose or peace of another person.
(1) A person being towed on the surface of Lake George shall wear a United States Coast Guard approved Type III personal flotation device.
(c) Artifacts. No person shall appropriate, excavate, remove, injure or destroy any historic shipwreck or artifact submerged in Lake George. This subdivision shall not apply to the State of New York or its authorized agents or representatives provided the excavation or removal is for the care and preservation of the shipwreck or artifact.
Section 646-2.7 Speed Limits.
(a) Except as otherwise provided herein, no person shall operate a vessel on the waters of Lake George in excess of the following speed limits:
(1) between the hours of 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. - 45 statute miles per hour; and
(2) between the hours of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. - 25 statute miles per hour.
(b) The provisions of this section shall not apply to a seaplane while taking off or landing upon the waters of Lake George.
(c) The provisions of this Section shall not apply to a vessel competing in or practicing for a boat race over a specified course held by a bona fide club or racing association between the hours of 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., provided that written notice of the date of the race and scheduled practice times have been given to the Commission, not less than 15 days prior to the date of any race date or scheduled practice times, and the event is registered with the Commission on such forms as the Commission may prescribe. Where appropriate, the Commission may require that notice of the event and all scheduled practice times be given to persons who may be impacted by such activities. The Commission may also require proof that a satisfactory comprehensive general liability policy is in effect covering the event and the practice times.
(d) Nothing herein shall preclude a municipality with jurisdiction over the waters of Lake George from enacting a speed limit of less than 45 statute miles per hour on all or part of such waters.
Section 646-2.8 Noise Limits.
(a) No person shall operate a vessel on the waters of Lake George which is propelled wholly or partly by an engine operated by the explosion of gas, gasoline, naphtha or other substance, without having the exhaust from the engine run through an effective muffler so constructed and used as to muffle the noise of the exhaust in a reasonable manner. Dry stacks, cut outs and straight pipes are expressly prohibited.
(b) No person shall operate a vessel on the waters of Lake George which exceeds 86 db when measured at not less than 50 feet from the vessel being tested or 80 db when measured at not less than 100 feet from the vessel being tested.
(c) All decibel levels are to be measured on a decibel meter gaged to an A-weighted scale. Measurements of decibel levels shall be taken when the subject vessel is in motion or by static test when the subject vessel is stationary with engine operating at not more than 3,500 rpm.
(d) Any patrolman or law enforcement officer of the Commission, the State of New York, or any political subdivision having jurisdiction of the waters of Lake George, who has reason to believe that vessel is being operated in excess of the noise levels established in this Section may request the operator of the vessel to subject the vessel to a test as set forth in this Section to measure noise levels, with the officer on board if the officer so requests, and the operator shall comply with such request. Failure to comply with the request shall constitute a violation of this Section.
(e) The provisions of this Section shall not apply to a vessel competing in or practicing for a boat race over a specified course held by a bona fide club or racing association between the hours of 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., provided the due written notice of the date of the race and scheduled practice times have been given to the Commission not less than 15 days prior to the date of any such race or scheduled practice times, and the event is registered with the Commission on such forms as the Commission may prescribe. Where appropriate, the Commission may require that notice of the event and all scheduled practice times be given to persons who may be impacted by the event.
Section 646-2.9 Restricted Use Zones.
(a) No person shall anchor, moor or recreate from a vessel on the waters of Lake George in front of private property within 200 feet from the mean highwater mark of such property without the consent of the owner or lessee of such property. This paragraph shall not apply:
(1) to persons fishing from vessels, provided such fishing does not create a hazard to near-shore recreational activities such as swimming; or
(2) the emergency use of such waters.
(b) In order to prevent overcrowding and congestion, reduce noise, protect the public health, safety and welfare and preserve the resources of the Park, the Commission may designate restricted use zones on the Lake and adopt regulations for the usage of such zones. If permitted by the regulations for any zone, the Commission may establish a system of mooring buoys for that zone. The Commission may also establish marker buoys to show the limits of such zones. Within any restricted use zone established by this Section no person shall operate, anchor, moor, recreate from or otherwise use a vessel, or undertake any other activity, in violation of the regulations established for such zone.
(1) Sandy Bay. That area of Sandy Bay which is below the mean high water mark and is bounded and described as follows shall be a restricted use zone: Bounded on the east by the Rockhurst Peninsula, on the south by the shore of Lake George between the Rockhurst and Cleverdale Peninsulas, on the west by the Cleverdale Peninsula and on the north by a line which runs due east to due west and is 1,800 feet north of the southernmost point on the southern boundary of the zone. Sandy Bay is located on the easterly side of the Lake, in the Towns of Queensbury and Bolton. The Commission may place up to 60 mooring buoys within said zone, which shall be placed so that no vessel tied to a buoy shall come within 200 feet of the mean high water mark. Within the zone, the following regulations shall apply:
(i) No vessel shall be anchored or moored for any purpose except at a mooring buoy established by the Commission, excepting that the restrictions of this paragraph shall not apply to the anchoring or mooring of a vessel for emergency purposes, or to the use of private docks, wharfs and moorings which have been duly registered with the Commission.
(ii) No more than one vessel may be tied to any mooring buoy.
(iii) No vessel shall be tied to another vessel, to any marker buoy established by the Commission to mark the bounds of the zone, to the shore, or to any object on the shore.
(iv) No vessel shall be beached on the shore or the bottom of the Lake excepting that the owner or lessee of private property may do so on that person's property.
(v) No vessel shall be left unattended.
(vi) No vessel shall be moored after sunset or before sunrise.
(vii) No vessel shall have more than ten feet of line between it and its mooring buoy.
(viii) Vessels in the zone and not secured to an authorized mooring shall be underway and shall not be allowed to drift or be held motionless.
(2) Paradise Bay. All of Paradise Bay shall be a restricted use zone. Paradise Bay is located in the Town of Bolton and Dresden on the eastern shore of the Lake, north of Shelving Rock. Within the zone the following regulations shall apply:
(i) No vessel shall be anchored or moored within the zone at any time for any purpose excepting that the restrictions of this paragraph shall not apply to the anchoring or mooring of a vessel for emergency purposes or to the use of docks established by the Department, provided that no more than two (2) vessels may be tied to any such dock at a time. This provision shall not apply each year from September 15 through May 15 of the following year.
(ii) No vessel shall be tied to another vessel, to any marker buoy established by the Commission to mark the bounds of the zone, to the shore, or to any object on the shore.
(iii) No vessel shall be beached on the shore or bottom of the Lake.
(iv) No vessel shall be left unattended.