On The Waterline | Safe Boating Class And More


Greetings boaters.  It’s June, and there’s a lot going on to report from the Harbormaster’s office in Manchester right now.  Let’s get to it.

Mooring Use

Memorial Day is past.  

Covid disrupted many things including vessel use for some boaters.  Please be advised, if you did not use your mooring last year you must have your vessel on by June 30 this year unless you have made arrangements with the Harbor Department.  This includes Magnolia and Black Beach.

If your vessel is in the harbor and you do not have a mooring for your vessel you must have left the harbor by this past Tuesday (May 31).  Those waiting for their mooring to be serviced for use will have some additional time.  

The 400+ people on the waitlist will be grateful if you fail to use your mooring according to regulation!  The Harbor Department will be noting moorings that remain unused after June 30 and designating them for assignment immediately.  This will be a “use it or lose it” season for many.

Tuck’s Point Update

The Tuck’s Point project is winding down.  Work will be essentially complete today, 5/26/2022.  The barge will be departing Manchester on 5/31/2022.  The Tuck’s Point facility will be open starting this week.  Prock Marine placed the new deck and ramp on Tuesday afternoon, the last big piece for the project.  

Final work on the pilings, railings and other miscellaneous details are being wrapped up.  

In addition to the dock project, Prock Marine also replaced some comprised structural supports under the Rotunda at Tuck’s Point.  Without this timely work the incredibly popular high school photo shoot on the Rotunda that preceded last week’s ME Jr. and Sr. Prom would not have been able to happen.  The deck would have been unsafe for that many people at one time.  

Prock finished the project on time and on budget just as they did our last dredging project!  Great Job.  Thank you to FOTH Engineering as well for the excellent work and oversight.  Great job to you too!


Please remember to put your 10-foot painter on your dinghy.  Ten feet is the minimum, snubbing up to the dock is not allowed.  If you have an outboard it must be in the down position while at the dock.  No exceptions.

As I just mentioned in the last section, Tuck’s Point is now open!  When the barge leaves this week, all dock space will be available.  All motorized dinghies must tie up on the inner most spot closest to the beach, no motorized dinghies are allowed in between the docks.  There is good water all around.  

If you kept your dinghy at Tuck’s Point prior to the closure two years ago you must go back to your originally assigned spot. 

Safe Boating Class

The next Safe Boating class is June 17 and June 24.  You must attend both dates.  Any questions, contact me at the Harbormaster’s Office in Town Hall during business hours.

Harbor Advisory Committee

Speaking of dates and times, the next Harbor Advisory Committee meeting is this coming week, June 7 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.  Open to the public.  Drop in and see what’s going on.

Hurricane Season

Boating season is here and so is hurricane season.

What should you do to prepare?  Start with a plan for your vessel in the event a storm does come.  Secondly, and maybe more importantly, pay attention to the weather!  Put a weather app on your phone and request alerts for bad weather of all types.  If you cannot put your boat on a trailer, you should be speaking with your boat yard about hauling options.  

A copy of the Manchester Storm plan is available online, and included here in a sidebar.  Hope for the best, plan for the worst, today. 

Marine Mammals

A beached whale, dolphin or porpoise should be reported immediately and left alone pending further instruction.  Call the NOAA 24-hour Marine Animal Hotline: (866) 755-6622.  Please leave your name and a phone number where you can be reached. 

Sea turtles in our region do not typically come ashore unless they are seriously debilitated.  Call the 24-hour Marine Animal Hotline: (866) 755-6622.

Seals belong on the beach.  It’s normal.  What should you do if you spot a seal on the beach? 

Keep people and dogs 150 feet away from the seal.  Does the seal look injured or unhealthy?  If so, please call (866) 755-6622 or call me, your harbormaster.  All marine mammals are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act.  This law makes it illegal to touch, disturb, feed or otherwise harass marine mammals without authorization. 

Manchester Draw Hours 0f Operation

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Bridge at “Mile 1.0” in Manchester has been operating as follows: the draw shall open from Memorial Day thru September 30 from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.  From Memorial Day and from October 1 to November 1 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.   At all other times, the draw shall open on signal with at least four hours of notice.  Call (617) 222-6114.

Towing Policy

Manchester Harbormaster only tows those vessels that are in immediate danger or present a potential environmental hazard.  Please contact a towing or salvage operator should you need to be towed.

Towing Insurance

What happens when you breakdown or run out of gas or some other unforeseen event that ruins a perfectly nice boating day?  If you are lucky enough to be in an area where the community allows towing by the harbormaster help is nearby and probably free.  Many communities including Manchester do not allow towing unless there is risk to life or property involved, otherwise you will pay large sums for towing service.  It would be wise to consider the purchase of towing insurance from your insurance company, Seatow or Tow Boat US.  For a reasonable rate you will potentially avoid paying thousands in towing fees. 

Think about it and plan ahead.

Harbormaster office hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Wednesday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday.  Hours will vary depending on training, Safe Boating classes and meetings.  Feel free to call before coming to the office.  And if you do come in, please wear a mask and stick to safe distancing requirements. 

Finally, be vigilant and notify the harbormaster of any missing or off station aids to navigation.  The latest Manchester Harbor Rules and Regulations are posted on the Harbormaster website.

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