Skip to comments.Recreational Boats Considered a Homeland Security Threat
Posted on 05/29/2007 6:47:28 AM PDT by TornadoAlley3
JACKSONVILLE, FL -- The Memorial Day holiday means it's a day on the water with the family.
Chuck Singleton does what he can to makes sure his kids are safe out here. The concern is who else is out there.
"You don't know where they come from," said Singleton. "You know, they could load up with a bomb or whatever and come right out here."
With thousands of boats on the waterways, the worry is the recreational boat is now a Homeland Security threat.
"Just the sheer numbers and ability to hide among recreational traffic is something that makes it difficult for me to find the threat and address it," said Admiral Thad Allen, Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard.
A simple boat could be used as a weapon.
"Just the fuel, this has 85 gallons in this boat and that's bomb itself," said Singleton.
The head of the U.S. Coast Guard is throwing around a couple of ideas on how to keep you safe.
One would require licenses for all boaters in all states.
The other would call for transponders on recreational boats so authorities can track their location.
"Anything to improve our coast and help everybody out, we need to do it. We just have to get control over this. I think it would be a good idea," said Singleton.
Those against the licensing or the use of transponders believe the Coast Guard needs to set up a small perimeter, a safety zone, in areas of concern, so small boats can't get into certain areas.
BTW We’re doomed doomed doomed.
Transponders would work, but it’s simple to just turn it off. That wouldn’t work too well, unless they use solar power for it.
Are boats really that different from cars? I don’t remember Mohammed Atta and crew having any trouble with drivers’ licenses, so I don’t think boat licenses are going to be any more help. Boats are already registered through the DMV.
There’s no question that I can drive right up to the Sears Tower or any other major building with my car. I could even get pretty close to a nuclear power plant or other major facility.
I’m going to take a wild guess and say transponders for every boat is unlikely to be a popular proposal and almost certainly wouldn’t get through the boating lobby. And in this case, quite frankly, I’d be on their side.
All a lawbreaker has to do is cut a set of wires or remove a battery, or toss the thing overboard, and there’s nothing that can be done to stop him.
Why not just keep doing what we have been doing, successfully? We have a pretty good record now of detecting and turning in people who are members of these conspiracies. If a boat is involved, it’s no different from a car or plane.
The resources that would go to any boat licensing or transponder programme are going to be a lot better spent looking directly for the real criminals instead of inconveniencing millions for such a dubious payoff.
Ahhhhh. The answer for everything.
Small pleasure craft represent little risk as the explosives capacity is small and most reasonable targets are not reachable by boat. Yes you could blow up a bridge or perhaps even damage a building. But the greater threat is for a boat to be used as a means to transport a group of terrorists.
I Thought about this after 9/11
I have a 58’ Houseboat on Norris, a local lake
Norris Dam is 265 feet high and
stretches 1,860 feet across the Clinch River
It has the largest reservoir on a
tributary of the Tennessee River.
Two undocumented Middle Eastern Aliens were
arrested there one night taking pictures
of the dam at 3 AM, caught by an alert forest ranger
It would easy enough to load the hull of our houseboat with fuel oil / urea mix, seal it, float it up to the dam, and detonate the bomb.
The resultant water wall would potentially destroy Oak Ridge, a major defense industry location.
The Security risks of recreational boats should not be taken lightly.
You could cut the wire to the solar panel and throw the whole mess overboard and nobody would be the wiser. Sorry, this one just won’t fly.
The more I think, the sillier this gets - Al Queda buys (or steals) a used Cigarette boat, capable of travelling at 80mph. Leave the transponder in the boat and keep it on. When you get right next to the nuclear power plant, trigger the explosives. Nobody will know to stop you until the last few seconds and then it’s too late, transponder or no.
We’re losing a lot of freedom through proposals like this and yet I don’t think they add to security significantly, if at all. I find it appalling that this kind of thing is even being proposed.
(Also see my #4).
The good news is every sheriff’s department and the U.S. Coast Guard has the authority to board any boat to check for alcohol abuse or to just count life jackets. While they are at it, they can check for WMD and other weapons of lessor destruction.
No question about this.
But anyone could steal your houseboat (if you were not using it at the time) and send it straight into the dam, and I doubt that transponders would do (pun intended) a dam bit of good in stopping someone who wanted to do it.
remember the USS COLE? small boat was used
Loose lips sink ships, house boats and can destroy hydro electric dams. It’s a good thing no one ever visits this website for ideas...
True enough about boats but the same would apply to cars, trucks, and light aircraft. One of the more credible conspiracy theories has Flight 800 shot down off New York from rockets fired from a small fast boat.
The 9/11 attack killed a lot more people, disrupted major markets, cost the economy billions. That is a large scale attack.
A boat carrying 10 men armed with 40 mm grenade launchers with thermite or WP grenades and machine guns attacking an oil pumping station or refinery would be far more damaging to America than a boat load of explosives running into a ship or a bridge.
But the point is that this is already a known threat.
It I, a lowly civilian, can put together an actionable threat, what could someone with significant resources and ill will do?
As well as marine police and state police...........the ability to check for this stuff is already in place, there is absolutely no need for more regulations/laws/intrusions in our lives.
I am so dog gone tired of these idiots and how they come to be in positions of power over us. Licenses for boats? Transponders on all boats? Maybe you need to get a permit before launching your boat. That way the state will know when and where your boat will be. Then the state can control how many boats are on the water and our lakes and waterways will be safer. Its for the children. Anything to help make us safer. (Anything except control our borders and send home all of the illegals! My family is much more likely to be hurt by an illegal then hurt by a terrorist. We need a war on illegals!! We need victory in the WOI!)
Heck buy or steal two boats and swap transponders - now that big fast boat is telling Homeland Security it's a 12' dingy with a half horsepower outboard
I agree, Valin. This
“Anything to improve our coast and help everybody out, we need to do it. We just have to get control over this. I think it would be a good idea,” said Singleton.
represents the fuzzy thinking of too many Americans: register, regulate observe evry danged thing in life and we’ll all be safe. News item: THERE IS NO GUARANTEE OF SAFETY IN THE WORLD!
Hey buddy, we can't have logical thinkers here.
Deport all the Muslims who are overstaying their visas - that might be a start.
Oh, don’t do that - I live in Oak Ridge, in a non-flood plain area, so I don’t think my insurance would cover it.
I also have thought of easy, cheap, methods terrorists could use to cause great damage to lives and property within the U.S.
I have not yet voiced them. But I am starting to wonder if I should. Having authorities possibly come up with contingency plans before an attack, or prevention of an actual attack, could save many lives.
Lets fix that small border problem first!
The Security risks of (moving vans, cube trucks,tractor trailers) recreational boats should not be taken lightly.
Hi Tenmnessee Bob!
Good to here from you
The key point.
I'm no explosives expert but it seems to me that even if you could float that much fertilizer on a 58' houseboat (to say nothing of the sight of it lumbering up to the dam} the resulting explosion wouldn't damage the dam too much...unless it was built by beavers...:)
It would be easier to load up your car or truck and drive it into a traffic tunnel and blow it up. - tom
No one here has even mentioned the most deadly threat known to man....Snakes on a Plane....
I’m surprised that the Staten Island Ferry or a fully booked cruise ship leaving the harbor haven’t been taken out by a speed-boat bomb. There is no way to protect against it.
To me, the issue here isn’t one of concern for security. Like so many other phrases, such as “It’s for the children,” this is meant to mask the real purpose of the idea: more revenue.
I’m sure that this will continue to be floated as a “safety” and “Homeland Security” concern. What they really want is that $100 license fee that the State will charge you.
Anyone who complains is obviously not in favor of “safety” or “Homeland Security...”
Perhaps they’ll make us take our shoes off before we get in our boats?
It’s time to trash Homeland Security.
When terrorists make people afraid of their own shadows, terrorists will have won already.
It's time for homeland security use common sense and balance freedoms with security. With more weight given to freedom.
Will our freedoms be used against us? Probably, but I'm not ready to throw them all away. We also need to give our representative a chance to shoot down stupid ideas.
You support HLS? It should be trashed...
There are lots of examples of this
A pickup truck load of explosives pulled up next to a hospital ER...
And you think that it is good that LEOs can board any boat for any reason, under the guise of "counting life preservers"? That is just as bad as police roadblocks to make sure people are properly wearing their seatbelts.
And do what?
If the option is no homeland security and a homeland security agency that has some common sense, I’ll take the homeland security department that has common sense.
Remember, they hate us because we're free.
We need to burn this village to the ground if we're going to save it.