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## Is Scuba Diving Legal in NYC Waters?

### In Short
Yes, scuba diving is legal in NYC waters, but there are several regulations and restrictions that divers must follow.

### Detailed Dive Regulations

**Permitted Areas:**

Scuba diving is permitted in designated areas within the five boroughs of New York City:

– **Manhattan:** Hudson River Park from Pier 45 to Pier 97
– **Brooklyn:** Coney Island Beach and Manhattan Beach
– **Queens:** Fort Tilden
– **The Bronx:** Orchard Beach
– **Staten Island:** South Beach and Great Kills Park

**Prohibited Areas:**

Diving is strictly prohibited in the following areas:

– All bridges and tunnels
– Industrial and commercial facilities
– Areas marked with “No Swimming” or “No Diving” signs

**Depth Restrictions:**

Recreational scuba diving is limited to a maximum depth of 130 feet (40 meters).

**Visibility Requirements:**

Diving is only permitted when visibility is at least 15 feet (4.5 meters).

**Dive Equipment:**

All divers must carry the proper dive equipment, including:

– Buoyancy compensator device (BCD)
– Regulator
– Depth gauge
– Compass
– Underwater light
– Whistle or signaling device
– Dive knife

**Buddy System:**

All divers must dive with a buddy and maintain visual contact throughout the dive.

**Boat Safety:**

Divers using boats must have a dive flag displayed prominently and follow all boating regulations.

**Dive Permits:**

No permits are required for recreational scuba diving in NYC waters. However, commercial dive operations, such as dive charters and training courses, must obtain a permit from the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.

### Additional Considerations

– **Water Temperatures:** NYC waters can be cold, especially during the winter months. Divers should wear appropriate thermal protection.
– **Marine Life:** NYC waters are home to various marine life, including fish, crabs, lobsters, and jellyfish. Divers should be aware of the wildlife and respect their habitat.
– **Pollution:** NYC waters can sometimes be polluted. Divers should be aware of any potential hazards and avoid diving in areas with known pollution sources.
– **Currents:** Currents in NYC waters can be strong. Divers should be aware of the current conditions and plan their dives accordingly.

### Enforcement

The New York City Police Department (NYPD) Marine Patrol Unit is responsible for enforcing scuba diving regulations. Violators may face fines or other penalties.

### Recommendations for Divers

– Plan your dive carefully and check the weather and water conditions before entering the water.
– Dive with a buddy and maintain visual contact.
– Be aware of your surroundings and the potential hazards.
– Respect the marine life and their habitat.
– Follow all dive regulations and boating laws.
– If you encounter any issues or emergencies, contact the NYPD Marine Patrol Unit immediately.

By adhering to these regulations and recommendations, scuba divers can safely enjoy the underwater world of New York City’s waters.

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