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Posted By Discussion Topic: Broads authority access rights and the day boats!

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Steve51
May-20-2018 @ 6:38 PM                           Permalink
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I was working on a boat shed in Horning yesterday when a well know ranger called in to check tolls. In the small area around the shed and dyke, 5 boats had no toll and 3 had no BSS. Filling in reminder slips and sticking them on to the offending boats takes up a lot of time. If everyone played by the rules, that time could be spent on the rivers, dealing with more serious problems.

In answer to Ruby, the rangers have on board access to a database, which is updated daily, to check whether a boat is tolled.

Steve. CM1 and NR12

Dreamer
May-20-2018 @ 8:03 PM                           Permalink
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I have read somewhere recently that the rangers are also checking that reg numbers are being displayed correctly. There are apparently many vessels which are not displaying reg numbers on the stern.

MikeParky
May-20-2018 @ 8:04 PM                           Permalink
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I suppose that's what I am saying in a roundabout way. The rangers sculling in boat dykes are missing the problems on the river. I agree everyone should pay their tolls (mine is on a short visit so I got two big number labels to stick on) but if things like that are happening on the main river that must take priority. While the incident happened in the morning I was under sail so my right of way and taking avoiding action was the priority,I certainly couldn't film them or get boat numbers as the workload was high and the valuable non waterproof items go in a dry bag incase of capsize. I reported it to Barnes brinkcraft as I hired from them in March but the call was when moored afterwards.
Searching for revenue fees is all well and good but not at the expense of missing river issues.If I had a car on my drive untaxed no offence is committed till it's on the road regardless of the tarmac it's sat on joining the road. If it's in a private area and not on the river the same  mentality should apply! What if a boat was locked in a boat shed you could float into?If they have right to enter adjoining waterways does that mean they could force locks to check? A policeman would need to suspect wrongdoing and get a search warrant,Only then can they enter private land.
Anyway I digress and apologize.
If the ranger had stayed on the river instead of carrying out his task in the dykes he would have seen the speeding boats on their returning trip through Horning and would have seen for himself.
After sorting them out he would of then seen the two huge Acapulco's that I could here someone further upstream shouting to slow down too. Hopefully they listened to him as they didn't to me.


Paladine
May-20-2018 @ 9:09 PM                           Permalink
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MikeParky, if you have an untaxed motor vehicle on your drive, unless you submit a Statutory Off Road Notification, you will get an automatic £100 penalty.

The rangers have a myriad of tasks to perform, such as checking BA moorings for safety, enforcing bye laws (speeding, overstaying on BA moorings, for example), checking ‘adjacent waters’ for compliance re tolls etc., ‘countryside duties’ (keeping grass and foliage cut back on moorings) – I could go on.

We all know about the behaviour of a small number of louts. I happen to think that it is incumbent on all of us to report offences to the BA or to the Police, as appropriate. Reporting to a boatyard (if the vessel involved is a hire boat) has very little, if any, effect.

If the rangers spend all their time on the main rivers, on the off-chance of witnessing speeding or antisocial behaviour, they’ll be criticised for not checking marinas and dykes for untolled boats, not ensuring broken mooring posts are replaced etc. There has to be a balance. They have to submit returns regarding their activities, and a composite report is published regarding each patrol area, so they can’t just go round picking the low-hanging fruit.

Regarding powers of entry, as has been said, some BA employees (notably the rangers) are empowered by the Broads Acts to enter land and vessels, under particular circumstances. Sometimes, they do need a warrant, but for the activity you have described, they do not. Unless authorised by warrant, they cannot use force. Of course, with the owner’s permission, they can enter anyway. This does not mean that ordinary citizens can go onto private land at will.


"..for the avoidance of any doubt, the broads are not legally a national park and do not come under the national park legislation, and nor will they."
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for DEFRA (Hansard 2015)


This message was edited by Paladine on May-20-18 @ 9:12 PM

MikeParky
May-20-2018 @ 9:46 PM                           Permalink
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Thank you for your post. Very informative.
Maybe boat owners should get an automatic penalty of £100 for not renewing their yearly toll like you mention for car tax! That way the  Authority would have more time for the duties you list. Sounds like a database of owners is already accessible to every ranger boat and updated daily.
Please don't get me wrong,I am not trying to say they are not valuable people, I'm sure they would prefer not to be on such mundane tasks but they're skills would be better used elsewhere as my day proved.Such tasks as yard hopping could maybe be carried out by land based people more efficiently leaving rangers to use their skills on the main river to educate for the benefit of us all.

Alone1
May-20-2018 @ 9:47 PM                           Permalink
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Capsize??!! In todays wind?? I think not. Sailing solo or could crew have rung in??
Ranger is doing his job as he should. Like police they cant be everywhere and see everything. Had you reported the incident promptly to an authority and not a boatyard who doesnt give two hoots then the response would have been different. To accuse the ranger of being totally clueless is a bit harsh. Very busy more likely.
Sounds more like trying to pick an argument to me. This is the opinion of a broads sailor for 55 years - every week!  boat-sail

Bob Huppendoun

There would be no life without water!!!

MikeParky
May-20-2018 @ 10:10 PM                           Permalink
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I have a 14foot dinghy and am fairly new to sailing. The misses does the jib so not sailing alone.I was taught to put valuable belongings safely away every trip and every thing that could float away to be fastened everytime as habit so that it becomes a good habit rather than regretfully wishing I had if we did capsize. Better to be safe than sorry.I never said yesterday was a capsize risk.I also said I was cut up by two flat out day boats. Piloting the craft safely was more of a priority than filming.

You infer I said the Ranger was totally clueless!
I said that he was clueless to what was happening on the main river as they were leapfrogging from private dyke to private dyke, big difference in meaning there.



This message was edited by MikeParky on May-20-18 @ 10:31 PM

Helmsman1946
May-20-2018 @ 10:20 PM                           Permalink
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Had a bit of a dig around and it looks like the best method to contact Broads Beat is to phone 101 & ask for "Broads Beat" their land line which may be or not current is likely to be an answerphone They may have a mobile but whether the number is published or not I will try to find out

Peter

Bobdog
May-21-2018 @ 5:51 AM                           Permalink
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The Rangers have a wide RANGE of tasks to perform (that’s why they is called Rangers, innit).  They  are the very public face of the BA, often highly visible on the river in their patrol launches.  However, as Paladine has suggested, many of the public fail to realise or understand the full spread of the Ranger role.  It’s not all about driving up and down the river all day telling people to slow down.  Indeed if it were I suspect we would not find it so easy to attract good people to the role, because that task would very quickly become tedious and boring.  It is the variety of tasks the Rangers do that makes the job attractive.  Employed by the BA, it is the BA who decide their priorities, and the priorities vary through the year.  

At this time of year ‘revenue protection’, getting the money in, takes precedence.  Tolls were due on 1st April, and by far the majority of boat owners have paid up by now.  However, as a boat owner myself, I’m aware of people who moor in the same dyke as me who haven’t paid, and would try to get away without paying all year if they could.  I’m pleased to see the Rangers cracking down on these freeloaders.  Without the money coming in, there would be nowt to pay the Rangers with, or to finance the moorings, dredging or all the other tasks.  It was because the Rangers were so successful (more successful than ever before according to Bill Housden in the Tolls Office) at chasing down the non payers last year that we have seen only a minimal increase in tolls this year (if some people don’t pay, the burden falls more heavily on those of us that do).  

Talking to a Ranger about checking all these adjacent waters the other week, he told me it was a really key part of the job, but for more than just the money collecting.  Because each Ranger is responsible for these checks in their own defined area, doing the checks gives them valuable intelligence about their area, and all the boats that are usually moored there.  He said sometimes he has resecured boats that have pulled away from moorings in remote locations, used his onboard pump to refloat a sinking boat, inform police and a boat owner about evidence a boat had been broken into and much more.  Again, I’m glad to know that the Ranger is about in the dykes offering this little extra bit of security.

Just like the icebergs, most of what the Rangers do lies below the surface, not visible to most of us, but they are a very valuable and much needed resource.

  I know quite a few of them, and all of them are dedicated to their jobs.  They can’t be everywhere all the time, and some of what the OP reports is very definitely a police matter rather than one for the Rangers.  They rely on information from the public, and do follow up complaints.

If you can’t be bothered to report it promptly to Broads Control or Broadsbeat, when there’s still a chance some action could be taken, don’t come on here carping afterwards.  Never mind tha Rangers duty, law and order is a public duty, our civic responsibility.  The authorities can only do their job if we support them and give them the intelligence they need to be effective.

MikeParky
May-21-2018 @ 6:46 AM                           Permalink
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Hi, Thank you for your response. May I say that initially I was explaining what happened to myself and others the other day.It also raised some questions in my mind which I have duly had answered during the discussion. I accept those answers and  my understanding has grown thanks to people's contributions,which is the purpose of a forum whether internet based or in an actual face to face meeting.
I have been educated.
I agree now with everything you say up till the part where you condemn me for "not being bothered to report the incident and come on here carping about things".
I am sorry that is how you feel about a new forum member who has had a bad experience,posting here names the hire boat company if nothing else. They have been informed and hopefully have done something about it as they unlike me till this discussion had no idea who else to contact to deal with this until my education here. Maybe the boatyard who are fully aware of the situation should be berated for not being bothered to do anything as they would know who to call.
I would prefer to give them the benefit of the doubt and hope they would.
I am grateful to all the people slating me for asking questions here. I remember the days when asking a question was how to learn. Like I said I have been educated and have saved the right numbers to my phone. I have also been taught the legality of access is very different to land based police. Seems the river is more dominant of users where revenue is concerned but more helpful in other matters.
The folks here slating me have taught me why,in another posters words,"why haven't I registered here before if I've been coming to the Broads so long". Even the people slating me have taught me something good here. Maybe obscurity beckons again and I should keep my head below the trench rather than finally sticking it up to tell others about my problems,shame the company hiring and ask questions to gain understanding!
I am sorry my questions don't fit into your ideas of what should be asked on a forum.I have just posted one or two message of mine ago that I think the rangers do a valuable job yet you still seem to think I think otherwise.Thank you for your warm freindship welcome to those who have but I fear obscurity beckons again.



This message was edited by MikeParky on May-21-18 @ 6:53 AM

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