The U.S. Coast Guard published guidance that allows mariners to use electronic charts and publications instead of paper charts, maps and publications.
The Coast Guard published Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular, NVIC 01-16, on Feb. 5 to provide uniform guidance on what is now considered equivalent to chart and publication carriage requirements.
“After consultation with our Navigation Safety Advisory Committee, the Coast Guard will allow mariners to use official electronic charts instead of paper charts, if they choose to do so. With real-time voyage planning and monitoring information at their fingertips, mariners will no longer have the burden of maintaining a full portfolio of paper charts,” said Capt. Scott J. Smith, the chief of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Office of Navigation Systems.
The new guidance applies to vessels subject to U.S. chart, or map, and publication carriage requirements codified in Titles 33 and 46 CFR and provides a voluntary alternative means to comply with those requirements.