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Old 14-12-2010, 10:13   #61
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Nigel1

You have described bridge situations that in real life don't exist. In most cases big ship radars struggle to differentiate sailing vessels from wave clutter. The sailing vessel has too ALWAYS act that he hasn't been detected unless he received positive confirmation . To act otherwise is foolish.

In real life and backed by many accident reports bridges are poorly manned, bad bridge and resource management abound, incorrect radar usage etc etc ( read several MAIB reports) the second thing is
That most modern OOW's have no comprehension of the issues in sailing a all craft and rarely factor it in properly to their thinking.

Dave
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Old 14-12-2010, 10:29   #62
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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Firstly I have thousands and thousands of sea miles in difficult conditions and a commercially endorsed yachtmastet offshore and ocean. I know my COLREGS. Virtually word for word. I have sailed the English channel many times ( ps that's a situation where TSS rules in the main apply rather then steering rules
Umm, the TSS is in force in only a small part of the English Channel -- just the Dover Strait and a little bit near the Casquets. In other parts of the Channel, particularly that part most heavily used by yachtsmen, between the central South Coast and Cherbourg, there is no TSS and regular rules apply.

See: Chartlet of TSS


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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post

I never advocated " unpredictable" course changes. Any changes should be " early, clearly identifiable and deliberate". I merely made the point that simply sailing into danger believing you are the " stand on" vessel is foolish. The key word is danger and that is for you to decide. The COLREGS fully support your decision to take avoiding action even if you are the stand on vessel. It is ultimately the skippers decision.
OK, I think we can all agree about that. Except maybe the last two sentences. If you are already in close quarters, having done your best to avoid but failed for whatever reasons, and you are the stand-on vessel, I think you need to give the give-way skipper a chance to work out a course deviation based on your steady course and speed. Commercial skippers may correct me here.


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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Again mention was made by me and supported and disputed by others about VHF usage. Ships regularly VHF in passing situations I have heard it all many times. Use it and if you can't contact them then decrease your danger threshold.
I didn't express any opinion about this. But I don't have AIS and wouldn't know who to hail at a distance where it still has any value to communicate with the other skipper. If you end up talking to the wrong skipper you can really dig yourself into a deeper hole, which makes it logical to me that attempting to use the VHF for collision avoidance would be frowned on if you don't have AIS and are not absolutely sure what ship you need to be talking with.

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As to my suggestion that you manoeuvre well in advance of any "risk of collision" and somehow that I am a " frightened ". Too damm right. I have been in too many situations involving large ships where blind adherence to rules would have got us all killed. The rule of tonnage does in reality apply, primarily because if someone goofs you'll be the one dead!!. ( the other guy simply has a mast stuck in his anchor)

Did anyone disagree with this? I for one strongly agree.

Besides the question about who gets killed, the "rule of tonnage" is also a matter of who is practically able to maneuver.

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post

The simple rid is do not sail into close quarter situations with large vessels underway unless you really half too.

It's worth noting that that's the attitude taken by large ships as well . They tend to have a standing CPA of 2-3 miles in most cases. I was sailing recently in busy italian waters with an AiS transponder and is was worth noting that large vessels manoeuvred to avoid me by changing course over the visible horizon in some cases

The other issue is courtesy. You may be able to easily alter course with little consequence even if you are the stand on. Some years ago I was off Bilbao and about 3 miles away a big car transporter was on a converging course. Eventually a risk of collision would result ( in which I was the stand on vessel) since I had a free wind I changed course to pass behind his stern. I then got a call from a very nice 2nd officer who thanked me as he would have been forced to do a autopilot course change and that would have meant waking the "old man"
Strongly agree with all of this. I think most here would agree, too.


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PS someone mentioned sailers killed in the English channel. If your talking about the " pride of Bilbao" incident you might first read the official reports before you make such misleading statements

Dave
I was not talking about the Pride of Bilbao/Ouzo incident. I was talking about the infamous "radar assisted collision" between Nedlloyd Vespucci and Wahkuna. See: Marine Electronic Navigation - Power & Motoryacht - A Radar-Assisted Collision

I was wrong however about the fatalities. Reading this again I realized that no one was killed in the incident. The Moody 47 yacht sank quickly, but everyone managed to get into the liferaft and was saved, thank God.
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Old 14-12-2010, 10:47   #63
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The wahkuna incident I beleive was in restricted visibility hence refers to completely COLREG rules. Anyway it illustrates the problem with unstablised small boat radar and the positioning error problem rather then any COLREG issues. ( other them relying on scanty radar data perhaps) . I am a RYA radar instructor and I use it in class to illustrate the radar plotting error problem.
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Old 14-12-2010, 10:48   #64
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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Nigel1

You have described bridge situations that in real life don't exist. In most cases big ship radars struggle to differentiate sailing vessels from wave clutter. The sailing vessel has too ALWAYS act that he hasn't been detected unless he received positive confirmation . To act otherwise is foolish.

In real life and backed by many accident reports bridges are poorly manned, bad bridge and resource management abound, incorrect radar usage etc etc ( read several MAIB reports) the second thing is
That most modern OOW's have no comprehension of the issues in sailing a all craft and rarely factor it in properly to their thinking.

Dave

I think your describing someone elses bridge, certainly not mine, and I've been at sea for 33 yrs, 20 yrs as skipper.
But your right, there is some sloppy watchkeeping out there, and people who dont know how to use and interpret radar, and other aids to navigation
Most modern radars on large ships are now pretty good if set up correctly, and if the OOW actually uses it properly to search for small targets.
I was working a pipe lay barge in the Baltic for most of year and could pick up the anchor buoys at a good two miles, but thats with the radar set up to look for the buoys.
On passage I normally have one radar set up for long range, and the second for closer range/small target work.
As a small boat owner I always impress on the watchkeepers to treat small boats as they would any other vessel and take appropriate action, but thats just me, and I agree, there are lot of watchkeepers out there who should be shot.
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Old 14-12-2010, 10:52   #65
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That is a misinterpretataion of reality!

I've communicated with many commercial vessels via VHF, and I've heard many commercial vessals on VHF communicate amongst themselves to indentify there intentions. Offshore, open sea, and coastal.
I never said VHF wasn't used - but most of the time the rules are clear, the actions predictable, and there is no VHF call used. I note though that VHF is used a lot more frequently in the US - elsewhere in the world you'll find VHF is not particularly useful to sort out anti-collision situations. If anything, the language barrier adds to the confusion, and such incidents have been well publicized as "VHF-assisted collisions."
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Old 14-12-2010, 11:05   #66
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The sailboat (under power) was crossing from my starboard, and insisted on his right-of-way over the VHF, totally disregarding my CBD and towboat status. Short of running aground to stop, there was no way even at full astern for me to prevent running him down. Being a couple hundred feet astern of the bow, I cannot tell you how close it was, but all I could see of him was his mast as he was blathering on the VHF about being a sailboat.
At the risk of thread drift - I'm not aware of "towboat status" being in either the Int'l colregs or Inland rules. Also CBD means he is not to impede you, but if a risk of collision exists, the relevant steering and sailing rules also apply - though in this case there was no "right-of-way", the sailing vessel under power on your starboard would have been the stand-on vessel in the crossing situation - notwithstanding, he should have exercised a little more common sense and worried more about not impeding you.
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Old 14-12-2010, 11:06   #67
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".... The COLREGS fully support your decision to take avoiding action even if you are the stand on vessel. It is ultimately the skippers decision."



OK, I think we can all agree about that. Except maybe the last two sentences. If you are already in close quarters, having done your best to avoid but failed for whatever reasons, and you are the stand-on vessel, I think you need to give the give-way skipper a chance to work out a course deviation based on your steady course and speed. Commercial skippers may correct me here.
Dockhead


firstly

(a) Nothing in these Rules shall exonerate any vessel, or the owner, master, or crew thereof, from the consequences of any neglect to comply with these Rules or of the neglect of any precaution which may be required by the ordinary practice of seamen, or by the special circumstances of the case.

ie the rules in themselves are not the full answer

(ii) The latter vessel may however take action to avoid collision by her maneuver alone, as soon as it becomes apparent to her that the vessel required to keep out of the way is not taking appropriate action in accordance with these Rules.

The words "apparent to her" are important here as I said its the skippers decision based on the circumstances of the case that he should take action even if hes teh stand on and the COLREGS support that , they do NOT ask that you allow the 3rd mate time to plot courses etc.
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Old 14-12-2010, 11:10   #68
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I think your describing someone elses bridge, certainly not mine, and I've been at sea for 33 yrs, 20 yrs as skipper
dont get me wrong I have the height of respect for the crews of well organised and run ships, I have been royally entertained, given loads of drink etc by same crew, I have been on the bridge of many a freight boat too.

However " sailing boat sailing boat, where are you we cant pick you up on radar") in broken english ( and thats when they call) is enough to tell me to treat everything large with massive caution.

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Old 14-12-2010, 11:12   #69
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( ps that's a situation where TSS rules in the main apply rather then steering rules
The steering rules still apply in TSS - there are just additional rules.
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Old 14-12-2010, 11:19   #70
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Some sailors were killed in the English Channel a couple of years ago because although they were the stand on vessel, they altered their course over and over again while the vessel they were trying to avoid was altering his own course. They managed to steer themselves right into a fatal collision. If they had simply stood on like they were supposed to then the ship could have avoided them.
By the way Dockhead, the Wahkuna incident is a direct example of what I mean, just to clear up you inaccuracies, firstly the Wahkuna incident was in low visibilty, hence this is not an example of stand on/ give way as such they do not apply ( even though the wahkunas skipper thought they did ). The wahkuna skipper, on finding himself unsure as to whether the Nedloyd boat would pass astern or ahead, actually did what the COLREGS suggest, slow down stop etc. The accident report while critising the Wahkuna, was extremely critical of the Nedloyd ship, inclding poor watch keeping failure to act, failure to ,maintain adaquate CPA, failure to slow in such conditions, failure to course change etc.

It fully backs up what I said, a small boat skipper can not act like (a) hes been seen, or rely on the 50,000 ton ship acting properly . You must retain the right to ACT, irrespective of the rules ( and the rules allow that).

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Old 14-12-2010, 11:27   #71
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The steering rules still apply in TSS - there are just additional rules
No not really as for us theres one important modification

"(j) A vessel of less than 20 meters in length or a sailing vessel shall not impede the safe passage of a power driven vessel following a traffic lane."

That removes the stand-on/giveway rules that we as sailing veseels enjoy as a result of our status and hence is of major impact. Impede has been determined to mean, cause a course or speed change.

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Old 14-12-2010, 11:47   #72
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At the risk of thread drift - I'm not aware of "towboat status" being in either the Int'l colregs or Inland rules. Also CBD means he is not to impede you, but if a risk of collision exists, the relevant steering and sailing rules also apply - though in this case there was no "right-of-way", the sailing vessel under power on your starboard would have been the stand-on vessel in the crossing situation - notwithstanding, he should have exercised a little more common sense and worried more about not impeding you.
Forgive me for not being more precise in my silly mind... how about RAM?

The whole point of my post was REGARDLESS of the rules, the other skipper "pushed" the rules almost to the loss of his vessel; there was absolutely NOTHING I could have done to prevent the collision. Yes TECHNICALLY he was the stand-on vessel were we both small craft, BUT had he been ten seconds slower, there would have been a lot of plastic bits in my wake!
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Old 14-12-2010, 11:50   #73
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I agree whole heartedly with this - Stand on vessels should stand on. Big ships can and do alter course, the worst thing you can do is to act unpredictably. Use the radio if you are concerned and, if you have AIS call the give way vessel by name. In 95% of potential collision courses developing, the give way vessel, irrespective of size, will alter. Often they will pass closer than you may like, say within half a mile (and they look very big that close!)
For a small boat skipper, that is seriously bad advice my friend, your obviously not concerned about the 5% being dead. To suggest that in spite of any assurance, to proceed as the stand-on vessel on the raw asumption that the 50,000 ton container vessel is going to adjust course is sheer folly and then to get say 1/2 mile away or closer again sheer folly. By all means assume the stand-on but before I get anywhere near the vessel I'd want positive assurance that I had been seen. OR, that I had deduced that given his course and speed I was clear ahead or astern, anything else, sheer nonsense. In my experience nobody sails into a close quarters ( whatever that means to you) with a large vessel on the "asumption" that he will change course. madness

Its is simply not good real world advice.
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Old 14-12-2010, 12:44   #74
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Allow me to change course (humor, ar, ar)

Here are a few of the better reviews of the book:

While looking for something else, I came across a book titled "How to Avoid Huge Ships.
I got a good laugh out of two of the many favorable reviews of the book, as posted on Amazon.com

Useful how-to book, October 11, 2007
By
John W. Woolley "King John" (Centennial, CO USA)
-

This review is from: How to Avoid Huge Ships (Paperback)
This book delivered! It really helped me learn to avoid huge ships -- I hardly ever have any problems with them anymore. In fact, I'm well on my way to reliably avoiding medium-sized and smallish ships, and even the occasional boat or skiff.

Of course, living in Colorado helps too.


3.0 out of 5 stars Caution: Check the title before purchase, April 7, 2010
By
Graham Thomas (Surrey, UK)
-
This review is from: How to Avoid Huge Ships (Paperback)
I live near a park and frequently walk around the local area. Given the amount of dog mess that is on the pavements I thought this book would be the ideal read to stop me having to scrape my shoes on the grass before going home. It was only after it arrived that I looked closely at the title and realised it said 'How to Avoid Huge SHIPS'. A simple error that means I am still treading on massive examples of canine excrement. Having said that, I read the book anyway, and I'm pleased to say I'm not even having near misses with huge ships anymore. No sir, they aint getting anywhere near me!
--
~~~~~~_/)~~~~~~~_/)~~~~~~~~As received in an email from a sailing buddy.
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Old 14-12-2010, 13:26   #75
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If you think a collision will occur, then alter, all vessels have an obligation to prevent collision, but if you do alter, then alter course to pass astern, don't try to squeeze past the bow, and as said earlier make the alteration obvious.
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This says it all. Don't change course willy nilly. Make ONE major correction that makes your intention obvious. A big freighter may take 1/2 mile to turn or stop. BY the time you see them itimay be too late for him to avoid you. I'll have to agree with Capn Geo, having been in that exact same situation myself, forced to put engines in full reverse to prevent collision with a sailboat that suddenly cut across my bow, all the while chanting on the VHF "sailboats have the right away, sailboats have the right away, ...". While breaking rule 1, rule 7, rule 9 AND rule 17, and tss rule J, all at the same time. Stand - on means stand on. Never alter course to increase risk of collision, any where, any time, ever. As a sailboat chances are you are the slower vessel, remember that when making steering choices, power boats don't have brakes, alter course away from other vessel not towards, plan crossings to cross behind stern, only alter course one time, (per encounter). In high traffic area follow traffic scheme, there is usually a "barge shelf" or other path for lower draft vessels on the edges of channels. Be safe everyone
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