Sector San Juan - Prevention Department

 Waterways Management


The Waterways Management Division serves the Coast Guard Captain of the Port function to manage the safe transit of all vessels on the navigable waters. A variety of marine activities and events take place that must be monitored, such as dredging, marine construction projects, removal of hazards and obstructions to navigation, and marine events, which include regattas, parades, fireworks displays, and boat races. These activities, combined with facilitating the marine transportation system, often present potential hazards that require our constant oversight and mediation. WWM also champions the rulemaking process for temporary and permanent safety zones, security zones, and special local regulations engaging the public and relevant stakeholders. The WWM Division plays a critical role before, during, and after natural disasters including hurricanes and earthquakes. To promote safe navigation we work closely with a variety of federal and local agencies including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Marine Pilots, Port Authorities, NOAA, FWS, DRNA, and our Coast Guard Aids to Navigation teams.


Our Facility Inspectors inspect a wide variety of waterfront facilities to promote and ensure compliance with federal safety and security regulations. Waterfront facilities in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands that fall under Coast Guard jurisdiction include: facilities handling explosives or other dangerous cargoes (33 CFR Part 126), facilities handling liquefied natural and hazardous gas (33 CFR 127), facilities transferring oil or hazardous material in bulk (33 CFR 154 and 156) reception facilities for oil, noxious liquid substances, and garbage (33 CFR 158), and marine security facilities (33 CFR 105).


Implemented by the Coast Guard to ensure compliance of intermodal containers, the National Container Inspection Program (NCIP) was created. The goals of the NCIP include protecting the public from potential hazardous releases or spills, protects vessels and crews from incidents at sea, standardize HAZMAT shipping, eliminate unnecessary delays of safe shipments, educate shippers, and coordinate to safeguard other modes within the transportation system. All of our Facility Inspectors also cross train as Container Inspectors ensuring containers arriving and departing from Puerto Rico are meeting all safety, structural, and labeling standards and that there is no undeclared HAZMAT. Container inspections is a crucial mission as ports in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands handled over 1.4 million TEU (twenty-foot equivalents) per year.

Contact: 787-729-2380