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Vessel Collision Avoidance Workshop

A Workshop on the Management Needs to Minimize Vessel Collisions with Whales in the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary and other National Marine Sanctuaries
September 3-5, 2003, Wailea Marriott, an Outrigger Resort, Maui, Hawai‘i


The Sanctuary is proud to make available the complete workshop report from the Vessel Collision Avoidance Workshop.

Workshop Report (pdf, 2.5 MB)

Workshop Report Appendix (pdf, 1.4 MB)

Background Information

The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary (HIHWNMS) Advisory Council and its partners sponsored a workshop to assess ship strike risks to whales in Hawai‘i and to identify possible actions to reduce the occurrence of vessel/whale collisions in Hawaiian waters and throughout the National Marine Sanctuary System. Resource managers, scientists, and representatives of the marine community were invited to participate in the workshop.

Speakers summarized information on relevant topics including: the distribution, abundance, and behavior of humpback whales in Hawai‘i; the occurrence of collisions between vessels and whales in Hawai‘i, Alaska, and elsewhere regarding why those collisions occur and steps that have been taken to help reduce collisions in these areas; the characteristics, constraints, and economic importance of vessel operations in Hawaiian waters; legal aspects and authorities for mitigating or preventing collisions between vessels and whales.

The workshop included working groups, which considered possible means of reducing collisions risks with various types and classes of vessels.

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