§ 20-7-11. Buoying of pots Escape vents.
(a) Each and every lobster pot, set, kept, or maintained, or caused to be set, kept, or maintained, in any of the waters in the jurisdiction of this state by any person licensed under this chapter, shall contain an escape vent in accordance with the following specifications:
(1) A rectangular escape vent with an unobstructed opening not less than 1 3/4 inches (44.5mm) by 6 inches (152.5mm); or
(2) Two (2) circular escape vents with an unobstructed opening not less than 2 1/4 inches (57.2mm) in diameter; or
(3) An unobstructed gap caused by raising both ends of a bottom lath in the parlor section 1 1/4 inches (44.5mm) from the bottom; or
(4) An unobstructed gap caused by separating both ends of two (2) vertical laths on the end of the parlor section by 1 3/4 inches (44.5mm); or
(5) An unobstructed gap created by cutting wires in a wire trap in such a manner as to meet the minimum size and number of vents required under subsections (a)(1) and (a)(2).
(b) The vent or gap shall be installed or made in the parlor section on the sides or end panel. No horizontal rectangular vent or gap or circular vent shall be located more than three inches (3") from the sill of the trap. Traps equipped with multiple opposing parlor sections must adhere to the escape vent requirements specified in subsection (a)(1) or (a)(2) in each parlor section. Any fisher not complying with the provisions of this section or § 20-7-10 shall be fined in compliance with § 20-3-3.
(c) The marine fisheries council shall have the power to establish larger escape vent sizes by regulation.
(d) Each lobster pot shall be separately and plainly buoyed; except that in cases where natural conditions render it impracticable to separately buoy each pot, the director of environmental management may, upon application from any person licensed under this chapter, grant permission to otherwise buoy those pots subject to rules and regulations promulgated by the director; and each and every permit so granted shall set forth the name of the person to whom the permit is granted; the number of the permit; the place or places where the lobster pots are to be located; the manner in which lobster pots shall be set; and the period of time during which the permit shall extend.
(P.L. 1981, ch. 197, § 3; P.L. 1988, ch. 305, § 1.)