By BBN Staff: Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia Jr. appealed to the public yesterday to cooperate with the new regulations on boat travel being enacted by the Belize Port Authority.
The new regulations, which came through Water Taxi Regulations Statutory Instrument 29 of 2019 are being introduced in two phases,
with the first phase starting on August 1. According to phase 1, operators must issue floatation devices to children over one-year-old and are required to submit passenger manifests 15 minutes before departure time. The manifests must include passenger names. Phase 1 also placed restrictions on Cargo, disallowing operators to carry passengers and cargo, and said that any passenger on a boat considered to be a threat to other passengers may be removed from the boat and
The second phase, to be enacted on September 1, will restrict any vessel not in possession of a valid seaworthiness certificate from operating. Phase 2 also comes with a $1 passenger fee that will be charged upon ticket purchase.
“These new regulations will ensure safer transportation for the public and GOB is asking the public to cooperate with the water-taxis during the implementation of these new regulations,” Heredia said.