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CBP Temporarily Adjusting Small Boat Reporting Procedures Along Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River

Release Date: 
May 9, 2017

OGDENSBURG, N.Y. – Due to the unusually high water levels in Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River, many of the seventeen videophone stations that are part of the Outlying Area Reporting System (OARS) are inaccessible to the boating public. To ensure the safety of the recreational boating community, the OARS program is being suspended until further notice. 

​The 17 affected videophone stations are: Dunkirk, Erie Basin (Buffalo), North Tonawanda, Youngstown, Rochester & Rochester City Dock, Wilson, Olcott, Point Breeze, Sodus Point, Oswego, Sackets Harbor, Clayton, Alexandria Bay, Morristown, Ogdensburg, and Waddington.

CBP patrol craft underway on river
CBP patrol craft underway on river 

As a recreational boater on any U.S. or Canadian waterway, both the master of a vessel and any passengers must report their arrival In U.S. waters to U.S. Customs and Border Protection upon returning from Canadian soil or if they came in contact with a foreign vessel.

While OARS is suspended, the master of the vessel and any passengers must report their arrival via phone to 1-800-827-2851. To facilitate this reporting, please have ready the following information:

  • Name, date of birth, and citizenship of the master and all passengers
  • Vessel name and state-issued registration number
  • Home port and current location
  • If vessel is 30 feet or longer, U.S. Decal number

Reporting via the 1-800-827-2851 number is routinely available for I-68 landing permit holders and trusted traveler cardholders (i.e., NEXUS, Global Entry, FAST). Contact the nearest U.S. port of entry or visit for information on how to obtain an I-68 landing permit or trusted traveler document.

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021