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Old 07-10-2013, 15:56   #181
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Does a lot of yacht sailing , does your coastie friend. ??? Skilled at collision avoidance in a 6-7 knot craft , I presume ?

There are " experts" and then state paid " experts"

Dave

He's not a friend, but he is a leisure boater. But since I have also managed to miss many a freighter or just plain very fast power boater, I believe that he is fully capable of avoiding collisions.
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Old 07-10-2013, 16:05   #182
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He's not a friend, but he is a leisure boater. But since I have also managed to miss many a freighter or just plain very fast power boater, I believe that he is fully capable of avoiding collisions.
You're absolutely right Rakuflames, you listen to the coastie , full on . Now where were we.....

Dave
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Old 07-10-2013, 16:39   #183
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

I'm just as much Coastie as whoever the new "expert is" and I fully agree with the rest of the pros and highly experienced people in this forum...

goboatingnow's post that stated this sums it up pretty well.....

"What's clear in all this , is that yachts need to realise they are full participants in the COLREGS. In fact they are provided with enormous lee-way and courtesy by the rules.

Dave"
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Old 07-10-2013, 23:37   #184
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
I dont think Dockhead that you will get a 100% tied down definition of "impeding" especially as it applies to small yachts.

First lets look at the relevant section 8(f) , whcih was specifically added in 1989 to address some issues like this




Clearly the definition of sea room is important, as is the requirement on the vessel to "take early action" to allow such sea room.

Secondly the object of providing such sea-room still applies , in those circumstances, even if the both vessels are now applying the COLREGS because a risk of collision exists.

The "not to be impeded" vessles must still apply the normal COLREGS rules, there is no " get out of my way" rule.



Futhermore Mr Allen, A member of the US Navigation safety committee and an acknowledged expert on Farwell, ( this is a piece from his paper on Farwell)
goes on to say




and later in discussing the whole issue of Rule 9




Its is worth noting that the Inland waterways Rules of the US for the Great lakes etc , rule 15b which uses "keep out of the way" specifically to address the confusion around "impeding" in the COLREGS


So , what do we have

The COLREGS, empathise sea-room as the defining issue in narrow channels and lanes. Equally they do not assign any particular "right of way" to vessels that "must not be impeded", these vessels are not absolved from their obligations under COLREGS ( which includes giving way to sailboats) .

Hence it is reasonable to deduct, that where a vessel , operating in a lane or narrow channel, causes or may cause a vessel to manoeuvre , adjust course or speed, is not in itself causing an impediment to the "not to be impeded" vessel. However should change or proposed change, cause that vessel to turn out of that lane , or may run out of sea room, then an impediment has been caused.

Hence In deep sea TSS sea lanes, short of behaviour approaching that of hooligan status, its very unlikely a sailing vessel would cause an impediment , as defined by the COLREGS , in any circumstance.

dave

The lack of a "100% tied down definition of impede" is a very serious flaw in the Rules, in my opinion.

Evans, I have been following with interest your conversation with Dave and Lodesman on this issue. I had exactly the same logical problems you had with this "not impeding" business. My first reaction is that there is no way that you can stand on and not impede at the same time, and that therefore, logically, you must give way, if it comes to that. Lodesman, in our conversation a couple of years ago, stubbornly proved that this was a naive and incorrect interpretation of the Rules, and I am grateful to him for enlightening me.

So what I take from my reading over the last couple of years and listening to knowledgeable guys like Dave and Lodesman is that the authorities will in fact tell you something like what Dave has laid out above. The only thing I would quibble with in Dave's interpretation is that he makes it sound much clearer and much more cut and dried, than it is or possibly could be.

In my opinion, it is a fantasy to imagine that we can always, or even usually judge whether or not a vessel privileged by our obligation to "not impede" has enough sea room to maneuver and give way, so that we can stand on properly. Without a radar overlay on a chart plotter -- which the Rules do not assume we have -- it is pretty hard to judge this, even in a broad TSS (Is there another vessel hidden behind the privileged MV? There was an actual collision caused by something like this recently.). I think all this is a dangerous abstraction which does nothing to help mariners in real situations. Standing on under a mistaken judgement about another vessel's sea room could be very dangerous. And confusion about who is supposed to be doing what is precisely what the Rules are designed to prevent - this confusion is what causes collisions.

And in a Rule 9 narrow channel situation, how could this be applied at all? There is no sea room, by definition.

In my opinion, the Rules, having created this obligation to "not impede", should be crystal clear as to what that means and how that obligation interacts with other obligations under the steering & sailing rules. In my opinion, not impeding should mean, basically, stay the f**k out of the way -- stay well clear prior to any risk of collision arising. And if you don't manage to stay the f**k out of the way, for whatever reason, and a risk of collision does arise, activating the other steering & sailing rules, then it should be made clear who does what -- should you forget about "not impeding" and go over into regular collision avoidance mode? Or should you give way? So that the other vessel should be standing on, despite what might otherwise be required by the Rules? Either of these situations would be better than what we apparently have now.

I prefer the latter variant -- not impeding smoothly transitions to giving way, and the obligation to "not impede and then give way" trumps all the other rules. Maybe there should even be a sound signal meaning "In case it is not clear to you, I am navigating in a narrow channel and am unable to safely navigate outside of it. I claim Rule 9. Beware, because I will not give way to you." This would overcome any possible confusion ("narrow" is also not define ).

One might object -- what about overtaking? You really want a big MV bearing down on a small vessel to stand on just because the small vessel is supposed to be "not impeding"? I don't know -- maybe. It works that way in Special Navigation Zones like the extremely busy Thorne Channel in the Solent. Small vessels and sailing vessels are even supposed to observe a moving exclusion zone around large vessels navigating in the Zone, and it works fine. The MV is allowed to maneuver anyway in case he has reason to be believe that the small vessel is not taking adequate action.
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Old 08-10-2013, 00:03   #185
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
You're absolutely right Rakuflames, you listen to the coastie , full on . Now where were we.....

Dave
LOL.

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Old 08-10-2013, 00:15   #186
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
All responses will be cheerfully ignored. Hearing from the Coast Guard was good enough for me.
Sure, don't worry about it Raku

In Tampa Bay you're not really going to ever have any real Colregs situations anyway. Just stay out of the way, which is pretty easy to do in places like that because big ships can only follow the channels and you have shallow water for miles out to sea. You'll be fine. I reckon in your case Rule 9 is mostly applicable anyway, which means you are supposed to be "not impeding" in any case.

Just don't assume that this is all there is to collision avoidance, or try to push such an idea on others -- that is, do not try to make a general rule out of your own very narrow experience. And be aware that you are not prepared to deal with traffic in open water. Collision avoidance is actually a very complex and interesting subject. You would profit greatly from some instruction. Good luck.
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Old 08-10-2013, 08:15   #187
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

PS, Dockhead. Once you got past your put-down, your first three words were "In Tampa Bay..."

I could count on one hand the number of times I have sailed in Tampa Bay.

That's a perfect example of assumptions.
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Old 08-10-2013, 08:33   #188
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

Sorry, the rest of my answer disappeared:

All of your assumptions were wrong, not just those first three words. If YOU think a sailboat can't get out of the way by sailing off 90 then you need to review your algebra, and aparently rather badly. IMO the person who is a danger out there is the person who can't come up with a Plan B to avoid a collision.

Please stop telling me what to "not assume" until you stop making assumptions yourself. Thanks.
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:01   #189
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

As my feeble understanding of common law goes, any poorly defined term must be defined by a court. Then a jury can apply that definition to a set of facts to render a verdict. Surely the definition of "impede" has been sorted out by the various court systems by now. Among all the legal beagles here with access to the world's databases of court opinions maybe someone could find a court approved definition of "impede".
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:42   #190
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

A good understanding of COLREGS allows us to make a crossing from Eastbourne to Berck in conditions similar to those shown below with confidence. A poor understanding such as, "get out of the way of the big boys" would mean never leaving the safe harbor, or being a danger to others. So it would seem we all have three choices,

1/ understand and practice good seamanship through a thorough understanding of COLREGS, vessel handling, navigation, safety principles and yacht handling.

2/ never leave the dock

3/ be a danger to others

Personally I have chosen option 1/ but I can understand and occasionally see others that have chosen 2/ or 3/. (see above)

Its discussions like this thread that are universally helpful to anyone else choosing option 1/ and I have learned something (quite a bit) about the finer points of collision avoidance regulations.
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:58   #191
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
If YOU think a sailboat can't get out of the way by sailing off 90 then you need to review your algebra, and aparently rather badly.
I don't think anyone wants to start all over again with this, which was done to death a few weeks ago.

Several different people went to a lot of trouble to explain to you why "just sailing off 90 degrees" will not get you out of trouble in many, probably most potential collision situations, which is why (a) that is not the way you are taught in any formal training program; (b) that is not what the rules say.

You chose not to absorb a single iota of what at least two professional ships' captains, a former senior Coast Guard officer, and a whole host of highly experienced sailors have tried to explain to you. That's your business and your loss. I don't think any of them will want to go through the whole exercise again; certainly I will not.
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Old 08-10-2013, 14:35   #192
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

This thread really does just keep on giving.......

If you have a ship on a steady bearing and you make a 90* alteration.... yes that may well get you out of trouble *if* your speed remains constant... unfortunately on a yacht a 90* alteration invariably involves a considerable alteration in speed and there is a good chance a bad situation will just get worse.

Whatever you do do it in ample time.... my last day job was 20,000grt, 18 knot, cargo ro-ro with twin becker rudders. The becker(sp) rudders meant that at sea speed we rarely used more than 3 or 4 degrees of helm when altering course, very manoueverable. Distance traveled between 'helm over' and the bow starting to swing with the ship actually starting to alter course was in the order of a ships length... about 200 metres. The last thing you wanted was some mug punter in a yacht losing his nerve just after you had put the wheel over.
Not talking TSS here or Rule 9 but in restricted waters where there was no way you could alter at several miles distance but had to take decisions on the fly.

The pic shows the makings of a 'Satdee arvo' rule 9 scenario.... 'own ship' at top of the heading marker at about 11 o'clock, 'target tails' on, about to alter to starboard into the channel which can be seen aligned N/S. A yacht race taking place bottom right.... they were using a racing buoy laid just clear of the channel.... up until a few year earlier they had been using a channel marker as a turning mark.....
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Old 08-10-2013, 15:48   #193
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
I'm just as much Coastie as whoever the new "expert is" and I fully agree with the rest of the pros and highly experienced people in this forum...

goboatingnow's post that stated this sums it up pretty well.....

"What's clear in all this , is that yachts need to realise they are full participants in the COLREGS. In fact they are provided with enormous lee-way and courtesy by the rules.

Dave"

The COLREGS were not written to favor any group over another, so there's no "enormous leeway," although courtesy goes a very long way. The rules are written to minimize the risk of collisions as much as regulations can. I certainly know leisure boaters who have no idea who really has to do what, and I hear "right of way" all the time. Just yesterday I heard someone assuming that sailboats "always" have the "right of way."

As long as we continue to decline to require operator's licenses for leisure boating, there will be all sorts of levels of ignorance. But let's not confuse that with pecking people's posts apart, and out of context, as a form of personal puffery.

In fact if there's an accident there is no "leeway" for anyone. The rules will be applied impartially and as precisely as the powers that be can manage.
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Old 08-10-2013, 15:54   #194
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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The lack of a "100% tied down definition of impede" is a very serious flaw in the Rules, in my opinion.

Evans, I have been following with interest your conversation with Dave and Lodesman on this issue. I had exactly the same logical problems you had with this "not impeding" business. My first reaction is that there is no way that you can stand on and not impede at the same time, and that therefore, logically, you must give way, if it comes to that. Lodesman, in our conversation a couple of years ago, stubbornly proved that this was a naive and incorrect interpretation of the Rules, and I am grateful to him for enlightening me.

So what I take from my reading over the last couple of years and listening to knowledgeable guys like Dave and Lodesman is that the authorities will in fact tell you something like what Dave has laid out above. The only thing I would quibble with in Dave's interpretation is that he makes it sound much clearer and much more cut and dried, than it is or possibly could be.

In my opinion, it is a fantasy to imagine that we can always, or even usually judge whether or not a vessel privileged by our obligation to "not impede" has enough sea room to maneuver and give way, so that we can stand on properly. Without a radar overlay on a chart plotter -- which the Rules do not assume we have -- it is pretty hard to judge this, even in a broad TSS (Is there another vessel hidden behind the privileged MV? There was an actual collision caused by something like this recently.). I think all this is a dangerous abstraction which does nothing to help mariners in real situations. Standing on under a mistaken judgement about another vessel's sea room could be very dangerous. And confusion about who is supposed to be doing what is precisely what the Rules are designed to prevent - this confusion is what causes collisions.

And in a Rule 9 narrow channel situation, how could this be applied at all? There is no sea room, by definition.

In my opinion, the Rules, having created this obligation to "not impede", should be crystal clear as to what that means and how that obligation interacts with other obligations under the steering & sailing rules. In my opinion, not impeding should mean, basically, stay the f**k out of the way -- stay well clear prior to any risk of collision arising. And if you don't manage to stay the f**k out of the way, for whatever reason, and a risk of collision does arise, activating the other steering & sailing rules, then it should be made clear who does what -- should you forget about "not impeding" and go over into regular collision avoidance mode? Or should you give way? So that the other vessel should be standing on, despite what might otherwise be required by the Rules? Either of these situations would be better than what we apparently have now.

I prefer the latter variant -- not impeding smoothly transitions to giving way, and the obligation to "not impede and then give way" trumps all the other rules. Maybe there should even be a sound signal meaning "In case it is not clear to you, I am navigating in a narrow channel and am unable to safely navigate outside of it. I claim Rule 9. Beware, because I will not give way to you." This would overcome any possible confusion ("narrow" is also not define ).

One might object -- what about overtaking? You really want a big MV bearing down on a small vessel to stand on just because the small vessel is supposed to be "not impeding"? I don't know -- maybe. It works that way in Special Navigation Zones like the extremely busy Thorne Channel in the Solent. Small vessels and sailing vessels are even supposed to observe a moving exclusion zone around large vessels navigating in the Zone, and it works fine. The MV is allowed to maneuver anyway in case he has reason to be believe that the small vessel is not taking adequate action.

Where I live, following rule 9 is a slam-dunk as the water around the merchant channel is plenty deep enough. There could be no justification for a leisure boater staying in the channel, much less doing that and then expecting a big freighter to give way (only by slowing up) -- even if under sail power.

The rules are clear, and there are very good interpretations of the rules in print and on line that sensible people can read.
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Old 08-10-2013, 16:00   #195
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Re: Big Ship Little Boat, who Gives way

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As my feeble understanding of common law goes, any poorly defined term must be defined by a court. Then a jury can apply that definition to a set of facts to render a verdict. Surely the definition of "impede" has been sorted out by the various court systems by now. Among all the legal beagles here with access to the world's databases of court opinions maybe someone could find a court approved definition of "impede".

OF COURSE. That's one of several reasons why reading a law by itself isn't nearly enough to tell a person what would happen in court. Somewhere, in some case law, I'm sure you're right and it has been defined and in addition may well have passed further legal scrutiny.

Without being able to see the supporting rulings one really doesn't know how a law will be applied.

But as long as one follows the over-arching rule to do everything conceivable to avoid a collision (including giving way even though one is technically the stand-on vessel), they will never be faced with how difficult it really is to just read a law.

Someone here was horrified because I said that with a big boat bearing down on me from behind I would give way (I even said 90, which certainly implies making that course change clear to the other boat). The person I spoke with at the Coast Guard said that that was EXACTLY the right thing to do.

I don't think merchant vessels should ever assume that smaller boats will know the COLREGS well enough to follow them to the nth detail as that commercial captain understands them. Likewise, pleasure boaters should not assume that a big boat steaming up their ass will in fact give way in time.

Get the heck out of Dodge. Don't see your boat burble to the bottom shouting "But I was the stand-on vessel!!!"
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