Formerly, resident staff at major coastal lighthouses carried out the maintenance and the operation of lighthouses and lighted buoys in nearby ports．
The operating area is small, and the staff are required to live in inconvenient quarters in remote areas．
With the installation of lighted buoys to indicate areas where submarine mines were placed during the pacific war，and the transfer of the control of aids to navigation under the control of local public bodies to the Central Government, by 1930，the number of aids to navigation reached the number three times the figure of the pre-war days．
With the development of marine transportation and fishing industries，it was quite obvious that the number of facilities must be increased to meet the growing demand．
The situation called for an efficient administration system.
The principle of the new administrative system was；
①To locate the office in a convenient site，to increase the efficiency of operation，and to improve the living standard of the staff.
②To improve the automation of facilities so that the staff need not be stationed at the site as far as possible.
③To provide boats and motor cars to establish a wide area management system and to increase the efficiency of operation． The new management system was starred in 1957． The remarkable development of the electronics technology contributed to the automation of up-to-date facilities，accelerating the establishment of the new organization．
Today，except at facilities where the staff are required to stay for the operation of the facilities，the majority of the facilities are unattended．
With boats and motor cars，at fixed intervals，the staff are sent for the maintenance and repairs of the facilities．
Helicopters are also used in locations with difficult access from the sea．
At present，as offices to maintain and operate aids to navigation，as agencies of the eleven Regional Maritime Safety Headquarters，there are 79 aids to navigation offices，26 maritime safety offices and 6 Traffic Advisory Service Centers and 1 Loran Center．