Like most possessions, boats often have a lifespan. Remember the old saying: "Your car is a necessity, your boat a luxury". At some point, boats are of such little monetary value or utility that they are not worth the cost of upkeep and storage. Some vessels are becoming natural reefs on the slip or at the dock for lack of maintenance and often they sink. We removed and disposed of 694 vessels from Tampa Bay. (See Capt. Log page/database).
Proper vessel disposal is a vital part of clean and responsible boating, but is also very expensive. Why? Because there are several environmental hazards associated with old vessels, including used fuel, oil, solvents and used batteries. It is important that all vessels are properly disposed of. Never abandon or sink a vessel to dispose of it. Not only does it pose an environmental and navigational hazard on our state’s waterways but it is also illegal with fines and even imprisonment.
The cost of properly disposing of unwanted vessels, usually run between $50 and $200 per foot depending on the size, hull material and weight.
The cost includes labor, landfill disposal, recycling or disposing of used fuel, oil, batteries and other hazardous materials.
Vessels Disposal Fees:
1. Vessels under 24' - $48.00 per foot
2. Vessels under 39' - $75.00 per foot
3. Vessels under 49' - $95.00 per foot
4. Vessels over 49' - $125.00 per foot
Price does not include fuel disposal fee, marine towing or land transport!
Removal & Disposal of Derelict and Abandoned Boats
Understanding the Law
The process of removal & disposal of an abandoned Carter Olympic 33 Yacht. St. Pete Municipal Marina
Bank Foreclosures / RE Companies / Private properties
The "LEGAL" process required for disposal of abandoned vessel on private property:
- Impoundment ( tow ticket and law enforcement record number)
- Dry / wet storage for 36 days
- Certified mail / notice to vessel owner
- Legal ad, newspaper notice of sale
- Public auction date
Unless we meet this criteria, we can't legally dispose a derelict or abandoned vessel.
Florida has no salvage law allowing the finder of an abandoned vessel the right of ownership. As a title state, Florida requires a transfer of vessel title from owner to purchaser in order to obtain legal ownership. It is a crime in the state of Florida to take an abandoned vessel without first getting a title to it; doing so is considered theft and could result in fines or even jail time.
Section 705.103, Florida Statutes, states that a person who finds an abandoned vessel and wants to make claim to it, and ultimately title it, must first report it to a law enforcement officer. The law enforcement agency will collect a fee to conduct an investigation and determine the owner of the vessel. If the vessel is not claimed in the process of the investigation, the law enforcement agency may transfer it to the finder with a bill of sale and evidence of the investigation. The finder would then apply to DHSMV to have the title put into his name.
For more information on derelict and abandoned vessels, visit the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission