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Floating Lift in NY (permits?)

598 Views 4 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  bravajo

I have a "floating lift" for my boat. The lift consists of a flexible membrane bladder (like an inflatable runabout) in a "V" or horseshoe shape. The boat pulls into the center of the bladder and it is inflated with air. The bladder acts as a raft to raise the hull from the water and avoid bottom paint. It all works fine.

I am considering slipping my boat at a Marina in New York. The owner of the marina is fine with the whole thing as long as it does not violate any rules or regulations.

I am trying to determine if I require any permits to use such a lift at a Marina in NY. I sent a couple of letters out to try and get the answer to this question but I can't find anyone familiar with this kind of lift (seems there are regulations governing both a floating dock OR a mechanical lift but that is not what I have).

Any ideas?


PS: The bladders have a smaller floating footprint than the boat (both length and beam) and run in a depth no deeper than the draft of the hull. It does not require the addition of any anchors, pilings, augers or anything to the just ties to the dock like a boat would.

This post edited by bravajo 09:29 PM 03/10/2008
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Thanks. It is slightly different in design than a hydrohoist but similar. I wrote a letter to the Division of Permits of the DEC and am awaiting a reply.

Do you happen to know if I (the owner) needs the permit or the marina needs the permit?

If it is work/cost on my side then it is easier than asking the marina to do it for me.

The DEC's answer to me was that "permits needs are decided on a case-by-case basis" and that I should submit my "case" to them for review. I have done so.

In the meantime I contacted a local floating-lift dealer who was adamant that the use of a my lift does not require a permit because it behaves just as a boat would.

There is probably a rule somewhere about this but I'll be damned if I could find it. There is plenty of talk about "floating docks and ramps" and "stationary lifts" but I can't find anything to address a floating lift.

I am tempted to call it a "16' boomless sailboat w/o a motor" which doesn't require a registration in NY and docking my powerboat on top of my "sailboat" :) (for the humorless...this was a joke)

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