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Hard Hats on Channel Markers

Old 08-19-2020, 11:44 AM
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Default Hard Hats on Channel Markers

Does anyone know the significance of a hard hat bolted to the side of a channel marker? There is one near my house in Tampa Bay (it is known as the hard hat marker) and I have seen others here and there. I saw one up in Homosassa over the weekend. Just curious.

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08-19-2020, 11:50 AM
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Its a coast guard tradition. When a member assigned to an Aids to Navigation team, is leaving the unit or transferring, they leave their hard hat on their last Aid they work on.

Old 08-19-2020, 11:47 AM
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I've never seen that in over 35 years of boating in S. FL.
Old 08-19-2020, 11:48 AM
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Never seen a hard hat but there used to be a deer head mounted to the marker outside my creek
Old 08-19-2020, 11:49 AM
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Sounds like sneakers on the powerlines! :p
Old 08-19-2020, 11:50 AM
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Its a coast guard tradition. When a member assigned to an Aids to Navigation team, is leaving the unit or transferring, they leave their hard hat on their last Aid they work on.

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Old 08-19-2020, 12:00 PM
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Never seen a hard hat but last Saturday I started seeing the American flag stuck in the grass flats, mud and sand. I’m all for being patriotic but I doubt if the flags are being maintained. I’m sure between the current and tides they are coming loose and sinking or just floating around.
Old 08-19-2020, 12:11 PM
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I live a little north of the OP, but south of Homosassa, and there are two channel markers within a 1/2 mile of my house that have hard hats on them....maybe it’s a regional thing?
Old 08-19-2020, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by MattJimm View Post
Its a coast guard tradition. When a member assigned to an Aids to Navigation team, is leaving the unit or transferring, they leave their hard hat on their last Aid they work on.
I like this explanation. In the Army we'd tie our combat boots together and toss them onto a powerline when we'd end service.
Old 08-19-2020, 05:14 PM
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Originally Posted by MattJimm View Post
Its a coast guard tradition. When a member assigned to an Aids to Navigation team, is leaving the unit or transferring, they leave their hard hat on their last Aid they work on.
That makes sense, I thought it was something along those lines. I appreciate your response.
Old 08-19-2020, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by MattJimm View Post
Its a coast guard tradition. When a member assigned to an Aids to Navigation team, is leaving the unit or transferring, they leave their hard hat on their last Aid they work on.
That's the answer! A call to the CGC Vise at the St Pete CG moorings with the location of the marker might yield a name.
Old 08-19-2020, 06:48 PM
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What he said , spot on!
Old 08-19-2020, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by MattJimm View Post
Its a coast guard tradition. When a member assigned to an Aids to Navigation team, is leaving the unit or transferring, they leave their hard hat on their last Aid they work on.
I like it , but suspect it is a very local or regionalized tradition as I've never seen or heard of that anywhere up here in the NE . Good thing he didn't have to leave his head like Mako's disembodied deer who apparently succumbed to somebody's concept of "the buck stops here."

"Bambi right returning" ???
Old 08-19-2020, 10:12 PM
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It's probably a local ship or station tradition. I spent 20 years in the Coast Guard and another 14 as a civilian Coast Guard engineer and never heard of that. However, there are lots of units that have their own traditions. ON one ship I was on it was the mascot, a dog, was always named Sinbad. Went all the way back to WWII. Check with whoever services those Aids. If that's the CGC Vise give them a call.
Old 08-19-2020, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by dante11 View Post
Sounds like sneakers on the powerlines! :p
that means drug dealing for that house. Unless there’s a boat parked at the market not sure how that would work
Old 08-19-2020, 11:23 PM
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I served in the CG. That's the reason although it is not condoned officially or encouraged. Sometimes it is an enlisted's cap or officer's cap. Definitely local in scope. I saw two fastened to the Verrazzano bridge one night on duty and asked about them.

Last edited by GaryDoug; 08-19-2020 at 11:29 PM.

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