Skip to main content

FLIBS 2015: Parents of lost teen advocate EPIRB law

ACR is donating $10 for every EPIRB it sells through the end of the year to the AustinBlu Foundation.

FORT LAUDERDALE — The parents of 14-year-old Austin Blu Stephanos, who was lost at sea with a friend July 24 in a squall off Jupiter, Fla., are working with two Florida lawmakers to introduce a bill that would give boaters an annual 25 percent discount on their boat registration fee if they own a properly registered 406 MHz EPIRB.

“Right now our goal is getting the bill passed,” Austin’s mother, Carly Black, of Tequesta, Fla., said Friday at beacon maker ACR Electronics’ booth at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.

Austin’s father, Blu Stephanos, was in Tallahassee Friday, meeting with Sen. Joe Negron and Rep. Marylynn Magar on a bill for the spring session of the Florida legislature.

“We also are working with ACR to educate people about [emergency] beacons,” Black said. “We want to help parents — we want to help anyone — not have to go through what we’ve had to go through.”

Stephanos and Perry Cohen, who also was 14, were the best of friends who often fished and dived and boated together. They went out Jupiter Inlet on July 24 in Austin’s 19-foot outboard to fish on the ocean and were lost, probably in a vicious squall that swept through the area. Rescuers found the boat two days later off Daytona Beach, but not the boys.

The boys were not carrying an emergency beacon.

ACR is donating $10 for every EPIRB it sells through the end of the year to the AustinBlu Foundation, which Stephanos and Black have founded to raise awareness and promote educational programs to improve boater safety, particularly among young people.

“The ocean was the love of [Austin’s] life,” the foundation’s website said. “The lesson of his life is to take every precaution when enjoying the majesty, beauty and power of the oceans.”

Related

1_TRAVELIFT.COOP

Marine Travelift Launches Co-op Program

The company received its first student, a University of Wisconsin engineering major, in the seven-month paid co-op.

1_JULY4

Trade Only Today Returns Tuesday

The e-newsletter will not publish July 4 in observance of Independence Day. We wish everyone a safe holiday weekend.

1_ORR.FUNDS

ORR Announces Federally Funded Projects

The U.S. Economic Development Administration prioritized outdoor recreation for the first time

Norm#4

Ten Ways To Sell in a Tough Economy

These keys to successful selling can help you create customers who keep coming back, even when sales dip

1_ASA.BOARD

ASA Names New Board Members

The American Sportfishing Association filled two at-large seats and two regional seats on its board of directors.

1_EXEC.SEARCH

Dammrich, Hopkinson Partner With Marine Resources Recruitment

The industry veterans will help clients fill executive-suite, marine industry job openings around the world.

1_PULSE.PING.0630

DEALERS: How Was Business in the First Half of 2022?

With the second quarter coming to a close, was there parity between the budget and financial performance in the first six months? Take the Pulse Report survey here.

1_PMMPODCAST

Passagemaker Relaunches Podcast

Trawler Talk aims to connect with those who are interested in the cruising lifestyle, with episodes dropping every other week

1_AQUILA

Aquila Celebrates 10 Years

The builder said it has sold more than 500 power cats and is the No. 1 brand in that segment.