- If a boat has an installed toilet, it must be equipped with a Coast Guard approved marine sanitation device (MSD).
- There are three types of MSDs. Type I and Type II MSDs are systems that treat the
- sewage to meet certain standards before discharging it into the water. A Type III MSD is a holding tank. Vessels 65 feet and under may have any of the three types. Vessels over 65 feet must have either a Type II or a Type III.
- Type I and Type II MSDs must have a certification label affixed by the manufacturer. Type III MSDs do not need a certification label.
- If a vessel has a holding tank, all pathways for the overboard discharge of raw sewage must be blocked or secured by disconnecting or physically blocking those onboard sewage lines or hull fittings.
- A “Y” valve (which by-passes a holding tank) is allowed, however, it must be secured to prevent the overboard discharge of raw sewage. Acceptable methods of securing the “Y” valve include the use of a nonreusable wire tie, a padlock, or by removing the valve
- For any vessel offered as a noncaptained charter, the leasing entity must ensure that the vessel is in compliance with this law and include in the lease agreement, signed by the leasing party, a paragraph outlining the operator’s responsibilities under this law.
The head game
Maryland Law Effective July 1,1997 What you need to know about Proper Sewage Disposal Federal regulations regarding vessels with installed toilets have been in erect since 1980 and have been enforceable by the U.S. Coast Guard. Effective July 1, 1997, a Maryland law (Natural Resources Article §8-741) allows the Natural Resources Police to enforce these requirements. Violators are subject to a fine not to exceed $2,000. What Does the Law Say?