On Saturday, Chris Roosevelt headed up our first VE Ramp Day at Cathedral Park. Six members showed up which included Chris Roosevelt, Paul Ploeger, Murrianna Thomson, Matt and Diane Epstein, and a new member Laura Walters.
With the mentorship of Chris and Diane, Murrianna was able to get her initial five Vessel Safety Checks done to qualify as a Vessel Examiner. Laura observed two VSC's to start her qualification. The boat traffic was fairly steady
[Murrianna observing Paul]
[ Matt Epstein]
This was an excellent opportunity for the less experienced VE's to learn from some of us who have done hundreds of Vessel Safety Checks. Studying from a book and taking a test is just the start for becoming a Vessel Examiner. It takes time to learn all the different systems of a boat and different types of equipment that may be on a 40 + foot yacht. What you would encounter on a 16 ft. open fishing boat is much simpler than what you see on 46 ft. cabin cruiser.
Being a Vessel Examiner is a great way to teach boaters about Boating Safety. Most of the boaters we encountered Saturday were glad to have the VSC. Only two said No. A couple boaters had trouble getting their lights to work; one was getting frustrated with the white light stick not working. I suggested he check the bulb so when he took the cover off and touched the bulb it came on. He was grateful for my suggestion. Another boater, who had a 28 ft. cabin cruiser, needed a MARPOL trash sticker to meet the VSC requirement. Since I keep a supply of those, I handed him one and he thanked me. It is little things like this that give a good impression of the individual as well as the Coast Guard as a whole.
Diane Epstein FSO-PB