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Cell Phone Use On Board Auxiliary Facilities

Ref: (a) U.S. Coast Guard Boat Operations and Training Manual Volume I, COMDTINST M16114.32D

Ref: (b) Auxiliary Operations Policy Manual, COMDTINST M16798.3E

Reference (a), chapter 3, section F.2 states the use of cell phones/texting devices and phone applications aboard Boat Force assets is prohibited without permission of the Coxswain; permission can be granted only on a case by case basis. This policy was incorporated into the annual Auxiliary Operations Workshop presentations but was never incorporated into Auxiliary directives.  These changes will be incorporated into the next revision of reference (b).

Section A.3 of reference (b) states that a facility must have two-way communications with any Coast Guard unit; any Auxiliary Station or Detachments; any federal, state, or local agency (e.g., Army Corps of Engineers, police, fire department, etc.); or any local marina that agrees to maintain the scheduled communication guard, relay official information between the Coast Guard and Auxiliary facility. Local marinas must understand and agree to immediately report a loss of communications with the Auxiliary Patrol to the Coast Guard when the reporting period is exceeded.

The following will be incorporated into the next revision of reference (b):  VHF-FM is the primary method for communications during ordered patrols. The use of mobile phones and phone applications aboard Auxiliary Surface Facilities (vessels) is prohibited unless specifically authorized by the Coxswain and only on a case by case basis. The Coxswain should take into consideration a variety of factors using risk management principles before allowing the use of mobile phones. When a crew member is allowed to use a mobile phone, the Coxswain will assure that there is a proper lookout posted and the rest of the crew are attentive to their duties. The helmsman is prohibited from using a mobile phone.

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Source:  BSX Policy Letter 19-05, July 18, 2019

Last reviewed by ANACO-IT on 6 June 2023

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  1. Susan Davies

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