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Old 07-28-2007, 11:53 AM
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Default Beware Oak Bluffs

Out in Oak Bluffs a few weeks back, as I pulled in the harbor entrance I called channel 16 for the harbor master asking for a mooring or slip for an hour or two. Was answered on 16 by the harbor master, and was told to take any open slip, which I did.
Tied up, walked up the street and grabbed a burger. Go back to the slip, my boat is GONE! One of the other boat owners tells me that they towed the boat away.
I go to the harbor masters office, they inform me that the slips are all full and I should have made a reservation ( it was a week day afternoon and half the slips were empty.)
A couple of young women were in charge in the harbor masters office. I then told them I had called on channel 16 and was answered by them and told to take any open slip. They tell me they only listen to channel 71, and NEVER LISTEN TO CHANNEL 16. This blew my mind, I have never heard of ANY harbor master not listening to channel 16.
Turns out, some a-hole had answered me on 16 posing as the Oak Bluffs harbor master and told me to take any open slip. So, shame on me for being fooled.
BUT, had the real harbor master been listening on 16, this could have been avoided.

Beware if going into Oak Bluffs. I have been going there on and off for 25 years, never had this problem. I was in the slip for less then an hour before they towed my boat out, and the marina was less the half full.
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Old 07-28-2007, 09:52 PM
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Default RE: Beware Oak Bluffs

First correct me if I am wrong but Oak Bluffs is a Marina and doesn't have a harbormaster, hence someone pulling your chain. Second I ALWAYS meet some one face to face before leaving my boat in a transient slip. Pay up get a reciept and go on your merry way. I have also never hailed a harbormaster for a slip or mooring on 16. They all use other channels around here to keep the traffic off 16 and save it for emergencys. I have found too that just because a slip is empty does not mean that some one else hasn't reserved it and paid for it even though there is no boat in there hence it is not available. There is info out there on what channels the differant harbormasters use for instance Edgartown uses 9,74 for hailing and 74 working channel, Vinyard Haven hailing is 9 and working is 69, as well as Menemsha . Oak Bluffs "Marina" uses 71 but you already know that, make sure next time you know these in advance. And never tie up your boat and walk away with out talking to someone in person, will save you a lot of trouble in the future.
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Old 07-28-2007, 10:20 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Wow...This story is full on "monkey dung"!



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Old 07-28-2007, 11:04 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

there is a sign entering OB harbor telling you to hail on 71. hailing the harbormaster isn't exact protocol, but it is a town marina, not a private business, so that should have worked imo. i really can't believe that someone would respond pretending to be the harbormaster on 16. if i'm going over for lunch and grab a mooring, i generally do not wait for the kids in the dinghy to show up to collect as some of them...umm...tend to take their time. never been a problem for me.

i personally see how you fell into that trap, i don't think there's anything unusal about what you did. what they did does seem a little strange to me. hindsight 20/20, checking w/the office after tieing up seems to be the right thing to do.
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Old 07-29-2007, 09:56 AM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Beware Oak Bluffs?

This is just unbelievable

Let me see if I've got this straight -

You blast a request over more than 300 sq miles on the WRONG channel. You should familiarize yourself with vhf protocol. Frankly, I'm amazed that after 25 years of experience you did not know what channel to use.

Then you get an IDIOTIC reply - which you BELIEVE. Didn't you think it was odd that a harbor master would tell you to take "any slip?"

Then of course you get upset at the only folks who apparently know what they are doing. They probably can't monitor 16 because the airwaves are clogged with other boaters that don't follow basic VHF rules.

I'm sorry to hear of your misfortune, but blaming others for your mistakes is not going to help you in the future.
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Old 07-29-2007, 11:37 AM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Tisk Tisk!
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Old 07-29-2007, 11:53 AM
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Default RE: Beware Oak Bluffs

Not blaming anyone for my being fooled, as I said shame on me. BUT, I have NEVER in 25 years of boating have experienced a harbor master NOT monitoring channel 16. ALSO, channel 16 in addition to being the emergency channel, IS the HAILING channel. My experience has always been to hail on 16, then switch to another channel.
The point is that they should be monitoring channel 16 and the summer staff could use some training in understanding that.

Again, the place was HALF empty. As I pulled in, one of the harbor masters workers took down my boat name and did acknowledge me. I was gone for LESS than an hour, and the slips were still half empty. No need to tow at all.

Oh and YES, Oak bluffs has a harbor master and IS clearly marked on the docks.
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Old 07-29-2007, 12:10 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Quote:
rogerstg - 7/29/2007 9:56 AM

Beware Oak Bluffs?

This is just unbelievable

Let me see if I've got this straight -

You blast a request over more than 300 sq miles on the WRONG channel. You should familiarize yourself with vhf protocol. Frankly, I'm amazed that after 25 years of experience you did not know what channel to use.

Then you get an IDIOTIC reply - which you BELIEVE. Didn't you think it was odd that a harbor master would tell you to take "any slip?"

Then of course you get upset at the only folks who apparently know what they are doing. They probably can't monitor 16 because the airwaves are clogged with other boaters that don't follow basic VHF rules.

I'm sorry to hear of your misfortune, but blaming others for your mistakes is not going to help you in the future.

Not trying to pick a fight, but channel 16 is the HAILING and emergency channel. Protocol is correct to hail on 16, than switch to another channel to talk. That IS following basic VHF rules. The reply was NOT idiotic, in fact I have had that happed MANY times in the past, where the harbor master HAS responded on 16 and I was told to take a mooring or slip. When it's busy (on weekends) they will normally have you switch to another channel for any conversation, but, during slow weekday periods, its not unusual for a short response on 16, as he did in this case.

What is unusual is a harbor master NOT monitoring 16, THATS THE POINT.
Again, not blaming others for me being fooled, should have walked directly to the harbor masters office after docking to
double check.

I did not post this thread to place blame, I just did so to make others AWARE of it.
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Old 07-29-2007, 01:47 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

You hail on ch 9 and use 16 for emergency hailing If using 16 in such a case you will be asked to change to such n such channel This has been protocol for as long as I can remember (over 40 yrs) for anyone hailing on ch 16 for whatever service/emergency. So even if they did monitor the channel they would have directed you to another channel (71) before okaying any slip transaction
Next time you hail for services on 16 see if I'm correct
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Old 07-29-2007, 04:10 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Quote:
ubettcha13 - 7/29/2007 1:47 PM

You hail on ch 9 and use 16 for emergency hailing If using 16 in such a case you will be asked to change to such n such channel This has been protocol for as long as I can remember (over 40 yrs) for anyone hailing on ch 16 for whatever service/emergency. So even if they did monitor the channel they would have directed you to another channel (71) before okaying any slip transaction
Next time you hail for services on 16 see if I'm correct
I will quote the protocol:

Choose the correct channel when communicating ship-to-ship or ship-to-shore. Channel 16 is a hailing and emergency channel only but it's the most abused channel. This channel is not for chatting or idle conversation. After contacting another station on channel 16, change immediately to a channel that is available for the type of message you want to send.


Note: "After contacting another station on channel 16, change immediately to a channel that is available for the type of message you want to send."

For as long as I have been boating, I have always heard harbor masters hailed on 16, and have NEVER heard ANY Coast Guard reprimand anyone for doing so. The CG will reprimand for idle chatter or radio check on 16, but I have never heard them doing so for hailing the harbor master.

Now, back to the point, which is that the Oak Bluffs harbor master does not monitor 16. I posted this for general information
and for others to be aware of.
EXAMPLE: Your in a distress situation off Oak Bluffs, and you call the Oak Bluffs harbor master on 16 for quick help where as they are closer then the CG, THEY WILL NOT HEAR YOU BECAUSE THEY DO NOT MONITOR 16. That and some wise as$ is playing tricks out there, thats the point.
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Old 07-29-2007, 04:22 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Amazing...

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Old 07-29-2007, 08:05 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Sorry to hear of your misfortune. Just spent the weekend in OB and it does get pretty rowdy at times. Not hard to imagine someone liquored up giving you bum advice just for kicks.
Where'd they end up putting your boat?
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:38 PM
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Default RE: Beware Oak Bluffs

They just towed it to a mooring, no harm done other than a few scuff marks. Not mad at them at all, nor do I blame them. After all they are just summer help and I am sure get overwhelmed by the crowds at times.
The guy that did answer my hail did sound very good, used good radio language and did identify himself as the Oak Bluffs Harbor Master.
I should have been more suspicious when he did not have me switch to another channel. I just figured it was very slow and he was very brief.
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Old 07-30-2007, 11:29 AM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

funny stuff.
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Old 07-30-2007, 01:41 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Quote:
Harpoon - 7/30/2007 11:29 AM

funny stuff.
In hindsight, yea. But not when it happens.....
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Old 08-08-2007, 07:35 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

oak bluffs sucks now, if you even get near the bulkhead some idiot will approach you and say, you can't tie up here!
years ago you could go to church's pier tie up for an hour, have lunch at nancy's or walk to jims package store and grab a fosters keg can and be gone. now it is like going to Moscow.
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Old 08-08-2007, 07:49 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

According to the MV web site the Oak Bluffs harbormaster monitors Ch 9 and the working channel is 71
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Old 08-12-2007, 11:30 AM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Quote:
WASQUE - 8/8/2007 7:35 PM

oak bluffs sucks now, if you even get near the bulkhead some idiot will approach you and say, you can't tie up here!
years ago you could go to church's pier tie up for an hour, have lunch at nancy's or walk to jims package store and grab a fosters keg can and be gone. now it is like going to Moscow.
I remember that years ago. Still not a bad place to go, the summer harbor master help just needs a bit more training.
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Old 08-12-2007, 02:49 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Channel 16 was once the hailing channel but is now only used for emergency purposes. And even when there is an emergency the CG asks you to switch (usually to 22) so they can keep 16 open for additional emergencies.

I can't believe the harbor master does not monitor channel 16! What a joke! So if a boat in the harbor (next boat over to him) was sinking he'd never know about it because he was not listening? Give me a break! You got played by some fool on 16 and then worked over by the harbor master...
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Old 08-12-2007, 06:57 PM
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Default Re: Beware Oak Bluffs

Quote:
FireFly - 8/12/2007 2:49 PM

Channel 16 was once the hailing channel but is now only used for emergency purposes. And even when there is an emergency the CG asks you to switch (usually to 22) so they can keep 16 open for additional emergencies.

I can't believe the harbor master does not monitor channel 16! What a joke! So if a boat in the harbor (next boat over to him) was sinking he'd never know about it because he was not listening? Give me a break! You got played by some fool on 16 and then worked over by the harbor master...
Yea, I know shame on me for falling for it. But, your right on the harbor master not monitoring 16, that's just unbelievable. I know that they are just summer help, but they should at least get some training on the VHF and boating etiquette.
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