Recently Santa Rosa County contracted with Gulf Marine Construction to remove a derelict 22 ft. sailboat from four feet of water in Santa Rosa Sound near Navarre. The boat was taken to the county's Central Landfill for disposal. The removal was funded by a $4,125 grant from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and a 25% match requirement funded with the county's boater registration fees.
Derelict vessels are boating hazards, impediments to navigation and esthetic nuisances. Their impact is not limited to their immediate location. Winds and tides continue to push the submerged boats causing greater damage as they become more deeply mired into the environment, displacing sea grasses which are vital to marine life and a healthy coastal ecosystem.