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Old 15-09-2013, 10:08   #76
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Originally Posted by psneeld View Post

The words 2 vessels is often used and usually the words "each other"..for good reason.

It's the way it's taught by the USCG to instructors teaching captain licensing....so I'm not making it up.

That's where rule 2 is mostly used or "safe speed" dependent on traffic....if there a potential for collisions between 3 or more vessels.

The general concept of COLREGs is between 2 vessels because you could be "give way" to one vessel yet "stand on" to the third....you can't be both at the same time....
Two vessels one crossing port to starboard , one starboard to port , both mostly in front of me , I deal with each one as it presents itself. A series of 12 vessels around me are dealt with as in effect pairs ( me and him )

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Old 15-09-2013, 10:21   #77
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Two vessels one crossing port to starboard , one starboard to port , both mostly in front of me , I deal with each one as it presents itself. A series of 12 vessels around me are dealt with as in effect pairs ( me and him )

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I know how to do it....just passing along how it's interpreted by the people who assign accident responsibility in the US....
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Old 15-09-2013, 11:31   #78
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Originally Posted by Captain Bligh View Post
I am curious as to the protocol of which bridge to use at what times when they leave a dock or are executing a 3 pt turn maneuver.
I spent quite a bit of time riding in the wheelhouses of WSF boats when earning my pilotage and it's been a few years, but I recall it went like this. The end that is going to stay as the "bow" will keep control the whole time with either the mate or master doing the driving, depending on whose leg it is. There is always a crewmember, usually the quartermaster, in the offshore wheelhouse when performing a 3 pt turn acting as lookout and can communicate with the other wheelhouse if a vessel is in the way. The wheelhouses and E/R's of all WSF boats are linked with a talk-back/intercom system so that they can instantly communicate with one another with the simple push of a switch.

For those who don't know, Hyak is a telegraph boat - meaning control of the engines/drive motors (it's a DC diesel-electric plant) is from the engineer's stand in the E/R and commands are sent down from the wheelhouse via telegraph (and Hyak has the distinction of still maintaining the original brass ones from the 1960's). The boat actually stops quite well, reportedly better than the others of its class.

There is always at least two people (an officer and the quartermaster, who does the actual steering) in the wheelhouse of a WSF boat in daylight with good visibility. At night, an extra unlicensed lookout is also up there. In restricted visibility, another deck officer is called up to help with radars, radios, etc and other crewmembers are posted on the car deck and pickleforks as lookouts.

In the San Juans, masters have the conn and do the landings when westbound and mates have the conn and do landings eastbound. All masters and mates have pilotage for all WSF routes. Some have pilotage for all of Puget Sound.

I'm a little suprised regarding the apparent lack of whistle signals that has been reported. The ferry crews are usually on their toes and are not at all bashful of giving five blasts when they need it. Very common to hear them blasting away on busy days.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Bill View Post
I also looked up Harney channel in washington on my official NOAA charts. I do not see any marked ferry routes on these charts. I looked at both the Raster and ENC charts. Am I looking at the wrong Harney channel?
You have the correct Harney Channel. Ferry routes within the islands are not charted because they vary so much depending on which boat is going where. Not all trips make every stop, but some do, etc. The only charted route up there is the crossing of Rosario Strait from Ship Harbor (Anacortes) to Thatcher Pass but even that is not entirely accurate as boats will oftentimes have to make adjustments based on the current and seas in Rosario. Also, it's not too uncommon for them to transit Peavine Pass between Obstruction and Blakely Islands, particularly when Rosario is up and kicking (they avoid beam seas).

Basically, those ferry routes denoted on the charts should just grab your attention that there may be ferries in the area, but they're not highway markers to be taken literally and they do not grant any special navigational privileges to the ferries.

Also, the ferries only make calls to VTS ("Seattle Traffic" ch 05A) when departing Ship Harbor crossing Rosario Strait, and when passing Frost Island before entering Thatcher Pass eastbound. The "international boat" doing the Sidney BC run will check in/out at Danger Shoal in Speiden Channel. Don't expect radio calls to VTS when within the archipelago. They monitor the VTS channel (05A or 14 down south) and channel 13 at all times. No watch on 16, nor is it required.
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Old 15-09-2013, 11:44   #79
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

We're not going to pass the tug and barges until after the ferry passes:



The tug/barges and us have just turned from east to north, entering the strait. The ferry will turn west shortly.

Earlier, we crossed the path about 1.5 miles in front of this car-carrier :

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Old 15-09-2013, 11:51   #80
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

Google Earth does a good job with the ferry routes through the San Juan Islands.
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Old 15-09-2013, 12:05   #81
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Two vessels one crossing port to starboard , one starboard to port , both mostly in front of me , I deal with each one as it presents itself. A series of 12 vessels around me are dealt with as in effect pairs ( me and him )

Dave
The only problem with this philosophy is that it neglects to show consideration for the limitations and maneuvering characteristics of the vessels involved (which is specifically addressed in Rule 2). One sailboat dealing with 12 ships may be able to take them one at a time, but then again you may be happy with a CPA of just one thousand feet. On a big ship in a non-harbor transit (including the English Channel, Gibraltar, Singapore, etc), you're thinking in terms of miles and CPA's with other large vessels at a minimum of one-half a mile. So, while you're ducking and dodging and taking each "one at a time", you may be forcing action by the other vessels that screws them up with each other.

The Steering and Sailing Rules only apply to two vessels in sight of one another where risk of collision exists. Radar and/or AIS contacts do not count as "in sight" with regards to the Rules.
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Old 15-09-2013, 12:08   #82
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Originally Posted by psneeld View Post

I know how to do it....just passing along how it's interpreted by the people who assign accident responsibility in the US....
Yes but I illustrating that the " turn and run " approach is fine in open spaces with small vessel counts.

Is situations of higher vessel density you have to try to stick to the rules. Try crossing a busy TSS using the turn away principle and see how that works.

The fact is the ferry is primarily at fault.

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Old 15-09-2013, 12:16   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Watermann View Post

The only problem with this philosophy is that it neglects to show consideration for the limitations and maneuvering characteristics of the vessels involved (which is specifically addressed in Rule 2). One sailboat dealing with 12 ships may be able to take them one at a time, but then again you may be happy with a CPA of just one thousand feet. On a big ship in a non-harbor transit (including the English Channel, Gibraltar, Singapore, etc), you're thinking in terms of miles and CPA's with other large vessels at a minimum of one-half a mile. So, while you're ducking and dodging and taking each "one at a time", you may be forcing action by the other vessels that screws them up with each other.

The Steering and Sailing Rules only apply to two vessels in sight of one another where risk of collision exists. Radar and/or AIS contacts do not count as "in sight" with regards to the Rules.
While certain sections and rules do mention " two vessels". The sailing rules introduction just mention " vessels"

It is entirely appropriate under the COLREGS that such ships , outside designated TSS do change course if I am in a sail boat. ( and they regularly do especially with AiS) they will get on the VHF and adjust there strategies to take me into account , As is required by the COLREGS.

does that mean I can sail blindly , no I must be aware of my responsibilities , but the COLREGS apply to large or small ( and not on a basic hierarchy of manoeuvrability as mistaken by Rakuflames )

The turn and run ( avoid) is actually ducking and diving. It's what ships don't like. They want us and them to follow the COLREGS.



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Old 15-09-2013, 12:51   #84
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

Quote:
Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
While certain sections and rules do mention " two vessels". The sailing rules introduction just mention " vessels"

It is entirely appropriate under the COLREGS that such ships , outside designated TSS do change course if I am in a sail boat. ( and they regularly do especially with AiS) they will get on the VHF and adjust there strategies to take me into account , As is required by the COLREGS.

does that mean I can sail blindly , no I must be aware of my responsibilities , but the COLREGS apply to large or small ( and not on a basic hierarchy of manoeuvrability as mistaken by Rakuflames )

The turn and run ( avoid) is actually ducking and diving. It's what ships don't like. They want us and them to follow the COLREGS.



Dave
I don't think we're disagreeing.

Yes, they (we, me) do want small vessels to follow the rules. Taking into consideration the maneuvering characteristics of the vessels involved is within full compliance of the rules. It's not throwing them out the window. Ducking and diving (avoiding the whole mess) is fine, IF it is done well before risk of collision exists - meaning, your actions are going to have no influence on my maneuvering or the maneuvering of anybody else near me that would then also effect me (ie, you're not getting out of one close quarters situation just to go and create another). The biggest challenge that small boat sailors have in this regard is in understanding the scale on which things happen on ships and the distances required for making decisions without having to take drastic actions.

And yes, I forgot that it's the Subparts of the S&S rules which distinguigh between all states of visibility, in sight of one another and not in sight of one another. The terms "stand-on" and "give-way" only apply to two vessels in sight of one another.
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Old 15-09-2013, 12:56   #85
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Google Earth does a good job with the ferry routes through the San Juan Islands.
As long as you remember that these are just typical routes, and that the ferry's actual course may be significantly off the charted track.
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Old 15-09-2013, 13:03   #86
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

My marina is close between a ferry terminal and the ferries' "resting dock" on the other side of the channel/strait. So, the ferries cross the channel near the marina. So, it is common to meet the ferries crossing the channel, entering and exiting the terminal, as well along their route between Vallejo and San Francisco. Thus, I consult the ferry schedule and maintain ferry-awareness. So far, so good.

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Old 15-09-2013, 13:09   #87
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

"I also looked up Harney channel in washington on my official NOAA charts. I do not see any marked ferry routes on these charts. I looked at both the Raster and ENC charts. Am I looking at the wrong Harney channel?"

For those of you not familiar with Puget Sound and San Juan navigation and ferry traffic:

Washington State Ferries have NO, NO-NO-NO, fixed routes or paths.

Dashed lines on the charts are there ONLY to warn you that a ferry might be using that stretch of water in some ill-defined manner.

Much of WSF navigable waters have currents that frequently exceed five knots and reverse twice a day - e.g.:
Pt Defiance - Tallequah
Port Townsend - Keystone
Anacortes - anywhere in the San Juan Island
Bremerton - Seattle thru Rich Passage

The ferries will deviate as much as a mile to either side of their "dashed line" route in order to counter the effect of the currents and to properly line up the boat for a safe and soft landing.

And... just to make it easier for we sailors - the route/destination of a ferry is very difficult to discern from your boat on the water.

For Example:

Fauntleroy to Vashon to Southworth (south of seattle)

Some WSF boats go from the mainland (Fauntleroy) to Vashon and on to Southworth, others go direct from the mainland to Southworth, some go from Fauntleroy to Vashon and back to Fauntleroy. The same ferry on consecutive runs might do the following:
Fuantleroy - Vashon - Southworth - Fuantleroy
Fuantleroy - Southworth - Vashon - Fauntleroy
Fuantleroy - Vashon - Fauntleroy

All of those changes within a 3 hour period!

The route is served by two and sometimes three ferries and there are frequently two ferries underway at the same time, sometimes going the same direction and sometimes opposite directions.

When the ferry backs out of Vashon Island it is impossible to tell if it is going West to Southworth or East to Fauntleroy.

Another problem is that in the mid-sound off of Seattle you can not tell if a westbound ferry is headed for Eagle Harbor or for Bremerton until they get past Alki Point and head the appropriate direction.

And just to make it easier - WSF does a lot of maintenance on their boats and they run around Puget Sound and the San Juans following no particular route while they do their testing.

SO - never assume you know where that ferry is headed or what it will do next. In mid-channel/good weather those enormous boats do 17 - 19 knots and cover a lot of water very quickly.

I've found the bridge crews on the ferries to be easy to talk to on VHF, courteous, and helpful.

Just my opinion based on 30+ years sailing Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands.
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Old 15-09-2013, 14:53   #88
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Equipment & better decisional information can help you steer away from developing situations. Practical, low cost steps for small sailboaters to take:

- ShipFinder HD app on iPad (he's doing 19.5 knots, I'm doing 5 -- I'm changing my course based off of big picture facts)
- "RadarScope" app on iPad (thanks for the hospitality New Haven Yacht Club - this app recommendation was a valued upgrade in my journey)
- Navionics on the iPad (not to be used as sole means of navigation)
- Stanley FaxMax Lithium HID Spotlight (Lowe's). HIDLISL 20W
- strobe on mast (even on a pennant string - see the Pardey's books)

If you a want to spend a little more invest in:

- a radar reflector on the mast
- a Simrad 4G radar
- better AIS

As sailors, let's try to keep in mind that it was Commercial Pilots who:

- picked up the passengers and crew off of Cpt Sully's water landing
- have their livelihood linked to safe operations
- rescued Foster Ashton & his crew
- saved Derk Wolmuth, AND his vessel http://www.selfsteer.com/news/

The boat that just passed you is almost always the one in the best position to rescue you. The reverse is also true. I always try to make eye contact and give a wave that is more of an informal, mutual salute not just a greeting.
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Old 17-09-2013, 12:43   #89
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

I heard today, in passing, from someone involved, that the Ferry had class B AIS filtering turned on (because they were getting too many alarms). I would put that in the strong rumor (rather than fact) category.

I did not get any more detail than that (like if the sailboat actually had a class B).

The whole incident is now wrapped up in confidentiality and the official investigation.
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Old 17-09-2013, 13:02   #90
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Originally Posted by estarzinger View Post
I heard today, in passing, from someone involved, that the Ferry had class B AIS filtering turned on (because they were getting too many alarms). I would put that in the strong rumor (rather than fact) category.

I did not get any more detail than that (like if the sailboat actually had a class B).

The whole incident is now wrapped up in confidentiality and the official investigation.
You should read the article below before you start passing around rumors of AIS Class B filtering... It just doesn't work that way!


The Class B A.I.S. Filtering Myth Revisited | Cruising World
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