Issue: February 2006
No Fly Boys Here

Boaters still have access to the creeks near Vice President Dick Cheney's Eastern Shore home. Airplane pilots, not so much.

Boaters, unlike aviators, don’t have to worry about steering clear of Vice President Dick Cheney’s new Eastern Shore retreat-but stay tuned to your VHF. So far, the Coast Guard hasn’t followed the example of the Federal Aviation Administration, which in November established a temporary no-fly zone in the one-mile radius around Cheney’s St. Michaels residence. Ironically, the FAA notice includes precise coordinates of the forbidden spot-which one might think would defeat the purpose of Cheney’s inclination to go off to Undisclosed Locations. Chris Dancy, president of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, complains the “temporary” notice has no expiration date while adding another layer of complication for pilots in an area where visual flight rules normally apply. Anyway, the radius appears to include parts of Broad Creek and San Domingo Creek above the Choptank River-both of which offer attractive destinations for boaters. So we asked the Coast Guard if it plans to issue a comparable Notice to Mariners waving boaters off. Lieutenant J. Andrew Ely says no, but it could. “True, the Coast Guard can impose restrictions on any navigable waterway at any time,” he tells us. “However, we have no intention of doing so in St. Michaels at this time.”