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Old 09-04-2011, 19:03   #46
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

I have seen many boats properly display nav lights and supplement lighting for deck work. Very common and confusing but fishing vessel's do this often. THeir decks are lit up like a city and somewhere in the midst are the nav lights. Similar to cruise ships and party boats trying to find the nav light in the midst of a disco ball is a pup. I would lean tword safe and leave my nav light as a nav light and use sparingly another fixture as a swim ladder thing.
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Old 09-04-2011, 20:45   #47
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

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Originally Posted by Kettlewell View Post
Just to give everyone the willies, I will mention an incident in the Bahamas. We were approaching Nassau on a black night and I could see what I determined was a tugboat approaching us--no visible navigation lights, but plenty of other lights all over the place. Blinding actually. He passed close in front of us. Realizing it was a tugboat got my Spider Sense tingling and I took evasive action heading off at a strong angle to his direction of travel. Sure enough, out of the blackness came a huge black barge with no lights whatsoever on it, probably 1/4 to 1/2 mile behind the tugboat on a long tow. I found out later that this was the water barge bringing over fresh water from Andros, and that was the way it always traveled. Within the U.S. I've encountered numerous commercial vessels not showing appropriate lights for what they are doing. So, basically at night you have to proceed with caution and avoid getting close to anything with lights, and don't expect them to be doing what their lights indicate.
Definitely off topic to a discussion of a specific light on a recreational vessel. But unlighted vessels, barges, etc. underway at night is the most common situation you will experience when cruising outside 1st world waters.
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Old 09-04-2011, 23:52   #48
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

The biggest navigational hazard in this part of the world is completely unlit boats at anchor. Early hours are the worst as many of the solar garden used by the boats that do at least display some lighting, have given out.

I have encountered a few unlit vessels underway, but yachts tend to be more guilty than commercial traffic. The numbers are decreasing, presumably because of the availability of LED lights and better charging systems.

Passenger ferries and cruse ships have so many extra deck lights that their navigation lights are frequently lost, but their attitude and direction of travel is obvious from the outline of the vessel, but if white lights are included, they all contravene, even the most generous interpretation, of not displaying lights that could be confused with navigation lights.
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Old 10-04-2011, 00:53   #49
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

In the U.S. at least, there are "special anchorages" where anchor lights aren't required to be shown. So unless there is a lot of ambient light at night, I'd suggest one proceed with searchlight or not at all.
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Old 10-04-2011, 16:22   #50
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

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Originally Posted by Don1500 View Post
Think about what you would see on a pitch black night. The stern light is on, so it's a boat under way. But the anchor light is on so it's at anchor. Which light should I believe? Or is the anchor light just a light on that hill behind the boat? It could be a boat under tow. Or are there two boats?
It might be taken as a boat underway getting ready to T bone an anchored boat. Yecch !!
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Old 10-04-2011, 16:38   #51
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

I seem to recall an accident in Georgia Straights in the PNW years ago when a sailboat with several folks aboard misread the vertical display on a towboat pulling a black oil barge at night and inadvertently tried to pass beween the tug and the barge with disasterous results, including loss of several lives.
There is a reason for the Col Regs, their standardization and why we all need to abide by them. Capt Phil
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:52   #52
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

The described lighting could be a properly lite tender dropping people off at the stern of an anchored boat, but that isn't what it IS. Lighting should be consistent with reality. I agree that non-navigational use of navigation lights is not a good idea. There are so many alternatives that can't be confused with nav lights, why push the boundaries?
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Old 11-04-2011, 07:07   #53
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

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Originally Posted by noelex 77 View Post
Passenger ferries and cruse ships have so many extra deck lights that their navigation lights are frequently lost, but their attitude and direction of travel is obvious from the outline of the vessel, but if white lights are included, they all contravene, even the most generous interpretation, of not displaying lights that could be confused with navigation lights.
You keep trying to make this more complicated than it is. First of all, the Rule makes no mention of a specific color, so it's not just about white lights. You example of a large boat with many lights is a prefect example of why they are NOT in contradiction of the Rule. There are no rules that prescribe a multitude of lights shining from all corners and decks of a boat, so if you see such a sight, you cannot possibly confuse that light display with some other configuration prescribed in the rules.

Back to post one: You proposed to leave a stern light and a anchor light at the same time, and you didn't indicate that you would show any other lights. Burning ONLY a stern light and an anchor light at the same time is in contradiction of the Rules. IF you choose to turn on other deck or cabin lights at the same time, then the stern light is seen in that context, rather than on its own, and an approaching vessel would see more than just the confusing two white light display you proposed in your original post, they would see a display that could not be confused with some other configuration in the Rules.

You said it best yourself above: "so many extra deck lights that their navigation lights are frequently lost, but their attitude and direction of travel is obvious from the outline of the vesse". Showing only two white lights from an anchored vessel does not make its attitude or direction of travel obvious.

The entire reason for having the Rules is to make what the other vessel is doing obvious.
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Old 11-04-2011, 07:57   #54
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

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Originally Posted by doug86 View Post
You keep trying to make this more complicated than it is. First of all, the Rule makes no mention of a specific color, so it's not just about white lights. You example of a large boat with many lights is a prefect example of why they are NOT in contradiction of the Rule. There are no rules that prescribe a multitude of lights shining from all corners and decks of a boat, so if you see such a sight, you cannot possibly confuse that light display with some other configuration prescribed in the rules.

Back to post one: You proposed to leave a stern light and a anchor light at the same time, and you didn't indicate that you would show any other lights. Burning ONLY a stern light and an anchor light at the same time is in contradiction of the Rules. IF you choose to turn on other deck or cabin lights at the same time, then the stern light is seen in that context, rather than on its own, and an approaching vessel would see more than just the confusing two white light display you proposed in your original post, they would see a display that could not be confused with some other configuration in the Rules.

You said it best yourself above: "so many extra deck lights that their navigation lights are frequently lost, but their attitude and direction of travel is obvious from the outline of the vesse". Showing only two white lights from an anchored vessel does not make its attitude or direction of travel obvious.

The entire reason for having the Rules is to make what the other vessel is doing obvious.
Thanks for the thoughts.
I would always use the anchor light at night so the stern light would be an addition. When I away from the boat at night I leave the cockpit light on for security so it is easy to ensure the stern light is only displayed with the cockpit and anchor light, as this would normaly be the case anyway.

Just to complicate the situation I actually display two 360 degree anchor lights. The reason I do this is I much prefer a low down anchor light to one at the top of the mast. I had a single hung anchor light, but found there were spots where it was obscured, as you would expect. I now have 2 anchor lights which I always display. They are mounted at the same height and illuminate a good deal of the deck and superstructure as well.
I did check with the forum and there was agreement that Two 360 degree anchor lights are legal.
With LED lights using so little power multiple lights are practical. The are a lot of local fishermen in this area that move about in small single handed boats. They are usually busy with chores on the way out of the harbor and donít keep a good look out, probably because they know the waters so well. I have had a few near misses and feel illuminating the boat well at anchor is important for safety.
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Old 11-04-2011, 08:10   #55
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

I should have said: the entire reason for the section on lights in the rules is to achieve two things: A) to alert the observer to the presence of another vessel, B) to make it obvious to the observer what that vessel is doing.

The purpose of Rule 20 (b) is to say "Don't show lights that are ambiguous or might confuse the observer as to what your vessel is doing."

Pretty simple.
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Old 11-04-2011, 08:27   #56
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

A white light at the masthead can mean only that vessel is at anchor or that the vessel is making way under sail. In either case, the rules are clear that the approaching or overtaking vessel must give way.

A single white light near deck level would be irrelevant. It could be anything including a stern light, boarding ladder light, or a cockpit light.

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Old 11-04-2011, 08:37   #57
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

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A white light at the masthead can mean only that vessel is at anchor or that the vessel is making way under sail.
NOT. So much misinformation on one thread? A sailing vessel making way would never show an all around white light at the top of her mast while underway: http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName=Rule25

Quote:
A sailing vessel underway may, in addition to the lights prescribed in paragraph (a) of this Rule, exhibit at or near the top of the mast, where they can best be seen, two all-round lights in a vertical line, the upper being red and the lower Green, but these lights shall not be exhibited in conjunction with the combined lantern permitted by paragraph (b) of this Rule.
Perhaps you have mistaken an anchor light with a "steaming" light, which a sailboat under power must show when underway.
Quote:
"Masthead light" means a white light placed over the fore and aft centerline of the vessel showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of 225 degrees and so fixed as to show the light from right ahead to 22.5 degrees abaft the beam on either side of the vessel
http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName=def21a_masthead
However, it is not an all around light, as an anchor light is. A steaming light and an anchor light are not interchangeable.
and then:
Quote:
A single white light near deck level would be irrelevant. It could be anything including a stern light, boarding ladder light, or a cockpit light.
Wow... a stern light is irrelevant?
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Old 11-04-2011, 09:01   #58
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

If you see only a single white light at the masthead it can only mean that you are seeing the white light part of a tri-color or an all round white anchor light. There are no other masthead single white lights that are not associated with sidelights or other colored lights defined in the rules.

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Old 11-04-2011, 09:10   #59
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

if it's dark, how do you know it is at the masthead?
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Old 11-04-2011, 09:28   #60
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Re: Stern Light at Anchor

The dinghy should be showing a white light when underway at night. Why not use that light when people are moving between dinghy and boat?
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