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Trending 2: This is a follow-up to last month's firsthand account of a recent AIS inspection experience by our Lake Havasu Marine Association member/Fishing Coordinator Jeff Dean. As previously reported, Jeff was moving his pontoon boat from Lake Havasu (after being in-water for approximately six months during the winter) to Big Bear Lake in the San Bernardino mountains for the summer season. After failing to pass the initial agriculture border station AIS inspection at Needles, CA, Jeff did the required decon in Havasu, had it re-inspected at the border station and got the appropriate clearance from California Fish and Game mussel specialists to launch his boat at Big Bear Lake. Jeff's pontoon was now in a slip at the Holloway Marina.
Unbeknownst to him, a couple of weeks later, Jeff's father and sister discovered his boat was no longer in the slip. Jeff questioned marina staff about the whereabouts of his pontoon, and located it on the marina property out of the water. Marina staff informed Jeff that Metropolitan Water District had ordered the boat (and three other boats) to be removed from the lake, placed on trailers (not Jeff's trailer) and held for an additional AIS inspection by MWD personnel.
The good news is the pontoon passed the MWD inspection and was later returned to the marina slip (however, one of the other boats did not pass inspection). This situation does raise questions regarding the AIS inspection protocol.
Apparently the border inspection station at Needles Faxed MWD in Big Bear that the boat was headed for the lake.
Shouldn't the boat owner be notified in advance if someone, or agency, is about to take possession of personal property? Who assumes the liability for the boat while it is being moved and re-inspected?
Do boats that have been identified as having mussels and entering California need two separate AIS inspections upon reaching their final destination (one by California Fish and Game and another by MWD if that water body is under MWD jurisdiction)?
If two separate agency inspections are needed, shouldn't the public be made aware of that requirement before that boat is allowed to initially launch?