Originally Posted by noelex 77
I would like to install a led anchor
light near the stern of my yacht (instead of at the masthead). It is difficult to fit a light that has 360 degree visibility, but I can install 2 lights on some existing ss poles that would ensure at least 1 was always visible. From some angles however, both anchor
lights could be seen. Are 2 anchor lights legal
Technically as I understand it, and was confirmed by the USCG, it's 354 degree visibility. The COLREG's are a little unclear about this. The light itself must be a 360 degree light but the visibility of it must comply with the CFR paragraph below:
Here's the COLREG's wording:
(e)"All-round light" means a light
showing an unbroken light over an arc
of the horizon of 360 degrees.
It does not make clear that the "light" itself need to be visible
to all 360 degrees just that the light itself needs to be showing an unbroken light over an arc
of the horizon of 360.
"CFR 33 Title 84.17 Horizontal Sectors:
b) All-round lights shall be so located as not to be obscured by masts, topmasts or structures within angular sectors of more than 6 degrees, except anchor lights prescribed in Rule 30, which need not be placed at an impracticable height above the hull, and the all-round white light described in Rule 23(d), which may not be obscured at all."
"(c) If it is impracticable to comply with paragraph (b) of this section by exhibiting only one all-round light, two all-round lights shall be used suitably positioned or screened to appear, as far as practicable, as one light at a minimum distance of one nautical mile."
You can always revert to the 345 degree rule but beyond that anchor lights do not have to be placed any higher beyond the hull
than "is practicable". Meaning it could likely be obscured by a mast
and still be totally legal
if it was not practical to climb to the top of the mast
to place an anchor light if using say an oil lamp
To get a more detailed understanding of the COLREG's, when it is not totally clear, I usually revert to the Code of Federal Regulations
which are the "rules behind the rules"..
I have an anchor light mounted to my radar
pole on the stern. I have at least 358 degrees or more of visibility with it as I have circled in my dinghy
at night and can hardly find a break in the light. Not only that it lights up my bimini
and boat around it so it can be seen very well as you get within 1/8 of a mile. I still keep one at the mast head
too but rarely use it as I feel much safer with the radar
pole anchor light.