NOAA urges boaters to watch for right whales

Courtesy MGNonline

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The National Oceanographic & Atmospheric Administration is reminding recreational boaters to slow down for right whales or face substantial penalties.

The agency says it charged four large yachts with violations for traveling at speeds greater than 10 knots in Right Whale Seasonal Management Areas last year. Penalties for the violations ranged from $9,000 to $11,500.

The whales migrate this month from calving grounds off the coasts of Florida and Georgia to feeding areas in the Gulf of Maine and north Atlantic. The North Atlantic right whale’s population is fewer than 500.

Regulations require boats 65 feet or larger to travel at 10 knots or less through the management areas. Penalties for violations can be as great as $13,200.

Copyright Associated Press

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