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Greater Atlantic Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) Program

Overview & Regulations

Please refer to 50 CFR 648.9 and 648.10 for a complete listing of Greater Atlantic VMS regulatory requirements. The following is meant to only highlight some key elements and is not a substitute for the regulations:

Description

N. Lat.

W. Long.

   1. Northern terminus point (Canada landmass)

45°03'

66°47'

   2. A point east of West Quoddy Head Light

44°48.9'

66°56.1'

   3. A point east of Little River Light

44°39.0'

67°10.5'

   4. Whistle Buoy "8BI" (SSE of Baker Island)

44°13.6'

68°10.8'

   5. Isle au Haut Light

44°03.9'

68°39.1'

   6. A point south of Monhegan Island

43°43.3'

69°18.6'

   7. Pemaquid Point Light

43°50.2'

69°30.4'

   8. A point west of Halfway Rock

43°38.0'

70°05.0'

   9. A point east of Cape Neddick Light

43°09.9'

70°34.5'

   10. Merrimack River Entrance "MR" Whistle Buoy

42°48.6'

70°47.1'

   11. Halibut Point Gong Buoy "1AHP"

42°42.0'

70°37.5'

   12. Connecting reference point

42°40'

70°30'

   13. Whistle Buoy "2" off Eastern Point

42°34.3'

70°39.8'

   14. The Graves Light (Boston)

42°21.9'

70°52.2'

   15. Minots Ledge Light

42°16.2'

70°45.6'

   16. Farnham Rock Lighted Bell Buoy

42°05.6'

70°36.5'

   17. Cape Cod Canal Bell Buoy "CC"

41°48.9'

70°27.7'

   18. A point inside Cape Cod Bay

41°48.9'

70°05'

   19. Race Point Lighted Bell Buoy "RP"

42°04.9'

70°16.8'

   20. Peaked Hill Bar Whistle Buoy "2PH"

42°07.0'

70°06.2'

   21. Connecting point, off Nauset Light

41°50'

69°53'

   22. A point south of Chatham "C" Whistle Buoy

41°38'

69°55.2'

   23. A point in eastern Vineyard Sound

41°30'

70°33'

   24. A point east of Martha's Vineyard

41°22.2'

70°24.6'

   25. A point east of Great Pt. Light, Nantucket 

41°23.4'

69°57'

   26. A point SE of Sankaty Head, Nantucket

41°13'

69°57'

   27. A point west of Nantucket

41°15.6'

70°25.2'

   28. Squibnocket Lighted Bell Buoy "1"

41°15.7' 

70°46.3'

   29. Wilbur Point (on Sconticut Neck)

41°35.2'

70°51.2'

   30. Mishaum Point (on Smith Neck)

41°31.0'

70°57.2'

   31. Sakonnet Entrance Lighted Whistle Buoy "SR" 

41°25.7'

71°13.4'

   32. Point Judith Lighted Whistle Buoy "2"

41°19.3'

71°28.6'

   33. A point off Block Island Southeast Light

41°08.2'

71°32.1'

   34. Shinnecock Inlet Lighted Whistle Buoy "SH" 

40°49.0'

72°28.6'

   35. Scotland Horn Buoy "S", off Sandy Hook (NJ) 

40°26.5'

73°55.0'

   36. Barnegat Lighted Gong Buoy "2"

39°45.5'

73°59.5'

   37. A point east of Atlantic City Light

39°21.9'

74°22.7'

   38. A point east of Hereford Inlet Light

39°00.4'

74°46'

   39. A point east of Cape Henlopen Light

38°47'

75°04'

   40. A point east of Fenwick Island Light

38°27.1'

75°02'

   41. A point NE of Assateague Island (VA)

38°00'

75°13'

   42. Wachapreague Inlet Lighted Whistle Buoy "A" 

37°35.0'

75°33.7'

   43. A point NE of Cape Henry

36°55.6'

75°58.5'

   44. A point east of Currituck Beach Light

36°22.6'

75°48'

   45. Oregon Inlet (NC) Whistle Buoy

35°48.5'

75°30'

   46. Wimble Shoals, east of Chicamacomico

35°36'

75°26'

   47. A point SE of Cape Hatteras Light

35°12.5'

75°30'

   48. Hatteras Inlet Entrance Buoy "HI"

35°10'

75°46'

   49. Ocracoke Inlet Whistle Buoy "OC"

35°01.5'

76°00.5'

   50. A point east of Cape Lookout Light

34°36.5'

76°30'

   51. Southern terminus point

34°35'

76°41'

  • Greater Atlantic Port Identification Listing - Owner/operators are reminded of the  requirement that a vessel be "in port" to declare its activity through the VMS or IVR. Click here for a listing of Greater Atlantic port definitions which will assist you in selecting a port in order to comply with the declaration requirements. Click here for the Permit Holder Letter of March 12, 2008.
  • Calling a trip into the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) Call-In System - If you intend to fish (1) completely shoreward of the VMS demarcation line or (2) both shoreward and seaward of the VMS demarcation line, declare your trip by calling the IVR line at 1-888-284-4904. This is necessary because VMS only records trips when a vessel crosses the VMS demarcation line.  Also, send the "Declare Out of Fishery" (DOF) declaration from your VMS unit.  For trips using days-at-sea, they will accrue based on the IVR declaration. When calling the IVR system, you'll need your: federal permit number, operator permit number, and NMFS-assigned personal identification number (PIN). You may also need to know the species, state, and port codes.  For questions about using the IVR system, call the Greater Atlantic Region's Analysis and Program Support Division at 1-888-487-9994.
  • Confirming the Use of a Previous VMS Code.  A VMS activity declaration must be sent for every trip prior to leaving port.  A new feature has been added to the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) Call-In system to make it easier for vessel owners/operators to declare their VMS trip.  If you intend to take a trip using the same VMS declaration code that was last sent from your vessel and received by NMFS, you may call the IVR to confirm the use of this code for your trip.  When you receive a confirmation number from the IVR system, you do not need to send a declaration from your VMS unit.  Click here for the IVR Information Sheet which includes instructions for using this new feature.
  • Listing of Type-Approved VMS Units - This listing was updated on January 13, 2016.  Click here.