Friday, July 12, 2024

US Government Ratifies Hawaii Dolphin Swimming Rule


The US government has ratified a rule that restricts people from swimming with dolphins within 50 yards (45.7m) in Hawaiian waters, according to a notice published this week.

The rule was ratified by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Administrator Richard Spinrad, according to a July 14 Federal Register notice:

“I undertake this action based on my careful review of the Approach Rule, my knowledge of its provisions, and my independent judgment that the Approach Rule was and remains necessary to protect Hawaiian spinner dolphins, a protected species under the [Marine Mammal Protection Act], from illegal ‘take’ by people wishing to closely swim with or approach the species. Pursuant to my authority as the NOAA Administrator, and based on my independent review of the action and the reasons for taking it, I hereby affirm and ratify the Approach Rule as of September 28, 2021, including all regulatory analysis certifications contained therein.”

The rule itself was published last September.

Check out the full rule here.

John Liang
John Liang
John Liang is the News Editor at He first got the diving bug while in High School in Cairo, Egypt, where he earned his PADI Open Water Diver certification in the Red Sea off the Sinai Peninsula. Since then, John has dived in a volcanic lake in Guatemala, among white-tipped sharks off the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, and other places including a pool in Las Vegas helping to break the world record for the largest underwater press conference.