Ships may have to be equipped with anti-collision device

Posted: Monday, July 28, 2003

ANCHORAGE (AP) Certain ships may have to be equipped with anti-collision technology that the federal government believe may be useful in thwarting terrorism.

Under the Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002, ships should be identifiable from a distance. The rule will eventually require the device to be installed on all ships of a certain size.

The equipment, called an automated identification system, will cost about $9,000. The device has a transponder similar to those on airplanes. It emits a signal that not only allows for exact positioning but also specific identification.

The Coast Guard said the target ships include fishing vessels traveling to and from Seattle and Prince William Sound.

Vessel owners and operators have until Thursday to comment on the proposed rule.

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