The Waterline


Greetings Boaters,

Welcome to August on Manchester’s waters.  We have a lot of updates for boaters this month.

Tuck’s Point

A contractor has been identified for the Tuck’s Point Project.  Prock Marine of Rockland Maine is the low bidder at $652,000.  The next lowest bid was just over $1.3 million saving approximately $650,000.  Prock was the contractor for the last dredging project in the harbor in 2017-2018.  Prock was $600,000 lower than anyone else for that project as well.  The contract stipulates completion by Memorial Day of 2022.  No more yellow dinghy!

Safe Boating Class Offered!

The Manchester Harbor Department will be offering a two-day Safe Boating course on Monday August 23 and Friday, August 27.  Class times are 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and you must attend both dates.  Class size is limited to 60 on a first come first served basis.  The class will be held in Manchester with a final location to be determined.  Email with your name, address, phone, birthdate, eye and hair color to be added to the roster.

Safety Lanyard—US Coast Guard Rule Change

Operators of recreational vessels less than 26 feet in length will be required to use an engine cut-off switch as of April 1, 2021, as the US Coast Guard implements a law passed by Congress.

NOAA Marine Fisheries

Manchester Harbor is now the host to a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

(NOAA) Marine Fisheries Vessel.  The vessel can be seen next to the town public safety vessels at Reed Park.

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) 755-662 or call 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 authority.

Manchester Draw Hours 0f Operation

Manchester Harbor.  The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Bridge at mile 1.0 in Manchester shall operate as follows:

The draw shall open from Memorial Day thru Sept. 30 from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.

From Memorial Day and from Oct. 1 to Nov.1 

from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 

2 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, Sea-tow or Tow Boat US.  For a reasonable rate you will potentially avoid thousands in towing fees.

Thank You

To Crocker’s Boat Yard and Honda!  A recent and expensive breakdown with the Eastern Public Safety boat set the department back.  The folks at Crocker’s reached out to Honda who is providing the replacement part at no charge to the town.  The Crocker crew quickly identified the problem and did all the leg work to secure the part.  The Harbor Department is most grateful.


June-August Harbormaster’s Hours 

Thursday - Monday     9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

Hours will vary depending on training, safe boating classes and meetings.  Feel free to call before coming to the office.

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

Stop by, say hi, and don’t forget your lifejacket.

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