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Old 17-09-2013, 13:34   #91
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Originally Posted by jeremiason View Post
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
Tom,

Ben (and you) are simply wrong with respect to furuno equipment. I have recently talked (by e-mail) this thru with Ben, and he has talked to Furuno, and he now admits it (my wife had dinner with him last night). In actual practice Class B can be filtered. I have actually directly used the furuno commercial gear to do this.

With furuno equipment . . .

(1) The actual class A AIS box does not have filtering, but this is moot, because this is a very small display that is usually stuck on the back of a shelf on the bridge where no-one looks at it and the sound/alarm is usually muted.

The primary navigation and AIS information on a ship comes from an IMO ECDIS system. The below shows two set-up screens for a common Furuno ECDIS.

(2) There is a set-up screen where class B targets can be filtered to not show on the display. However, they will 'wake up' if there is a collision situation detected and they will then reappear on the display.
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(3) But there is also another set-up screen that allows one to turn off the ‘automatic wake-up’ of filtered targets. If this is turned off, then the class B targets will not appear or alarm even if there is a ‘collision situation’. I have personally done this, and it does completely filter class B units.
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Old 17-09-2013, 13:38   #92
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Shoot... where's my ear plugs...
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Old 18-09-2013, 10:42   #93
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

AIS ???

I have a lot of experience with AIS and it is less than useful in the San Juan Islands.

The ferry runs to/from Friday Harbor / Lopez / Anacortes thru Harney channel require the ferries to be constantly maneuvering, changing directions, and reversing.

A WSF boat might deviate 45 degrees from it's apparent course several times while making the Harney Channel transit. They might also reverse suddenly to make a current appropriate approach to a Shaw, Orcas, or even Lopez.

The only way to know where the ferry is headed and it's intention for the next five minutes is to talk to them via VHF 13.

Those of you who are counting on modern electronic gadgets to keep out of trouble, or even to make informed decisions, are probably in for some rude surprises when things don't work out quite like AIS predicts.

Why not just use some common sense?

1) Look around a figure out what ferry landings are close by
2) You should already know what the currents are doing and how they might affect the ferry
3) Figure how a path for your boat that will not cross any of the potential ferry paths
4) When in doubt talk to the WSF bridge on VHF 13

I've been sailing those waters since 1971 and have never had a close call with the Washington or BC ferries despite having passed or been passed by thousands.

We're sailors - we are not in a hurry - we can take our time to stay out of the way of those big fast predators that wear the WSF log0.
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Old 18-09-2013, 11:14   #94
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Originally Posted by TacomaSailor View Post
AIS ???

I have a lot of experience with AIS and it is less than useful in the San Juan Islands.

The ferry runs to/from Friday Harbor / Lopez / Anacortes thru Harney channel require the ferries to be constantly maneuvering, changing directions, and reversing.

A WSF boat might deviate 45 degrees from it's apparent course several times while making the Harney Channel transit. They might also reverse suddenly to make a current appropriate approach to a Shaw, Orcas, or even Lopez.

The only way to know where the ferry is headed and it's intention for the next five minutes is to talk to them via VHF 13.

Those of you who are counting on modern electronic gadgets to keep out of trouble, or even to make informed decisions, are probably in for some rude surprises when things don't work out quite like AIS predicts.

Why not just use some common sense?

1) Look around a figure out what ferry landings are close by
2) You should already know what the currents are doing and how they might affect the ferry
3) Figure how a path for your boat that will not cross any of the potential ferry paths
4) When in doubt talk to the WSF bridge on VHF 13

I've been sailing those waters since 1971 and have never had a close call with the Washington or BC ferries despite having passed or been passed by thousands.

We're sailors - we are not in a hurry - we can take our time to stay out of the way of those big fast predators that wear the WSF log0.
Good points, but I've found AIS to be useful up here -- perhaps more useful than when I was sailing in the San Francisco area. However, I'm under no illusions (I hope) about what it can and can't tell me. I don't bother with collision/approach alarms, since as you say the ferry paths are always changing and erratic.

As for sailing a course that keeps you away from the ferry routes, exactly how do you suggest that I accomplish this? Here's the recent AIS track for the ferry Hyak (the one that hit the sailboat):
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Old 18-09-2013, 13:42   #95
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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AIS ???
I like what was said a while back in another thread about AIS-- it's a lot more important for them to see you than it is for you to see them.

So if you're watching AIS, yes, it might not be as useful as you'd want it to be.

But if you're sending AIS, it's easier for the WSF to avoid you than it is for you to avoid the ferry.

Since you don't have any way of knowing how useful sending AIS is unless you're standing on their bridge (and you're not) or you see the ferry avoid you, I conclude that you are merely receiving AIS, not sending it.

It's the same reason it's more important to have a radar reflector than it is to have radar.

The ferries will avoid you if they have half a chance. By a large margin. If you're in a small channel, they'll avoid you by as much as possible.

If they see you.
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Old 18-09-2013, 15:57   #96
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

A lot of technical discusion about a scary situation. Those of us who sail around here, that apparently includes the victim, know that there ferries will be there and need to keep track of where they and which way they are going. That's not to say every once and a while I find myself getting in the way. In my slow boat it happens and I try to make an obvious manuever to show my intent and scurry out of the way. The ferries are constantly dealing with small craft sometimes so thick that the wakes are worse than a nasty chop at sea. It's common to hear multiple warning horns from the ferry. Not this time.

The fisher 25 only has an inside steering station , probably saved his life,and would have most likely having to look over his left shoulder to see the oncoming ferry. The ferry would have been mostly concerned about the oncoming eastbound traffic and the northbound traffic from the Friday Harbor direction. There's no excuse for the collision except an error by both parties. I'll be anxiously waiting the outcome of the investigation.
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Old 18-09-2013, 22:42   #97
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

I am late to this discussion because I just put my boat in dock and got home. On Friday the 13 I was coming out of Friday Harbor at 1000, by 1100 the same ferry had come upon me in the dense fog at Turn Rock. The incoming current was wickedly strong, and had pushed me right into its path. It alerted me (and at least 3 other sailboats) with its foghorn, and deviated from its path to go on its way. I heard later in the day on VHF when eyewitness called in the crash, and rescued the sailor.
Visibility was extremely poor in my route until I passed Port Angles in the strait. And the tides had a spring like effect in them.
I heard the ferry captain, she was very shook up but managed to safely handle the situation.
I think it was not anyone's fault. If the currents were going there the same way they were in the San Juan channel, and the sailboat did not have a diesel to get her out of the way (both true I think) I am surprised there are not more collisions. The passes and channels here can be very narrow.
I had AIS and radar on, and the ferry called to me before she saw me. I do not think they were blocking the AIS. There were pleasure boats all over that morning that were dark (no lights) and no AIS and small (compared to the ferry). I cannot imagine that type of stress for a living.
Maybe this thread should be linked to those who want to cruise here without a motor...
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Old 19-09-2013, 00:24   #98
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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It would be that way because the boat gaining from behind has more speed and maneuverability or it wouldn't be gaining on the sailboat. However, a multitude of rules come into play, and the sailor who thinks he has the right to stay where he is while a ferry bears down on him may well end up like the sailboat in that photo up there, or maybe even a worse outcome (sailor dies, for instance). You would have to be able to read ALL the regs affecting ferries and ALL the regs affecting sailboats, and have the legal knowledge to sort it out to make that call.

This is what goes wrong when non-lawyers read the law. There's a reason lawyers go to school for a full three years and that their law degree is considered the equivalent of a Ph.D. This fixation on whether or not the sailboat "had" to move misses the point that it SHOULD have moved.

But what the colregs come down to is rules to avoid collision, because the seas don't have things like lane markers and traffic lights. And boats/ships don't have brakes.
So what you are saying is that only a lawyer is qualified to judge whether another's comments are educated enough to make a comment at all or even quote regulations?

Are you a lawyer or politician or maybe just a retired English teacher?

BTW, I have never heard of any body, academic or otherwise regarding a basic law degree as an equivalent of a PhD, where would this equivalence take place?

Could you please clarify exactly how much sailing time you have in the waters and conditions where this accident took place that enable you to be so clear on who is at fault?

Thankyou,
Mac
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Old 19-09-2013, 01:25   #99
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

I regularly sail the Danish Sound. Between the Dansih city of Helsingoer and the Swedish city of Helsingborg, the sound is 2.25 NM wide. # ferry routes cross exactly here (each 3 ships plying the route, meaning up to 9 ferries at a time out there) It also happens to one of the worlds busier waterways since it is the gateway to the Baltic. There is a TSS in place. On busy day the ships going north/south are about 10-15 minutes apart. Typically the ferries are going 12-15 knots and the ship are going 15-20 knots
On a nice summer day, toss in a few hundred pleasure boats, more boats fishing at the edge of the deepwater channel and well - it can get entertaining (much more fun at night. or in the fog).

Saying -. just get out of the way simply doesn't apply here. just getting out of the way can easily mean you are confusing the hell out of everyone else. I these situations, you need to understand, and follow, the colregs.

I can only agree with evans and dave - If you have lots of sea room, by all means just get out of the way. In tight situations, follow the regs, until the situation develops where a collision i imminent - then do your best to evade it
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Old 19-09-2013, 02:56   #100
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

The sailboat owners account:

"I heard a loud crunch. Turning around I saw the ferry hull coming over my stern and everything growing dark and flooding...like a slow motion horror film." In an email to boating club members, Jack Gray described his experience last Friday afternoon when his 25-foot Fisher sailboat was struck by the Hyak, a WSF Super-Class ferry. He was enroute to Deer Harbor. "I had been fogged in at James Island after crossing the Straits a couple days earlier. As Friday approached, skies were clearing, so I set out for your gathering. I made it half way, as now you have seen. I've been sailing these waters for over 50 yrs, and never considered the State Ferries to be a hazard - until now. It literally came up from behind, without horn, and quickly while I was at the wheel listening to traffic and making some radar screen adjustments just for testing. I was so surprised to come out alive, after feeling so close to death. I remember seeing ferry at the Lopez dock about a mile away. While at the helm in my pilot house and trying to adjust my radar functions, I heard a loud crunch. Turning around I saw the ferry hull coming over my stern and everything growing dark and flooding...like a slow motion horror film..."

Source: http://www.sanjuanislander.com/islan...erry-collision-
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Old 19-09-2013, 03:03   #101
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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I can only agree with evans and dave - If you have lots of sea room, by all means just get out of the way. In tight situations, follow the regs, until the situation develops where a collision i imminent - then do your best to evade it
a very succinct summary of the COLREGS carstenB
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Old 19-09-2013, 03:04   #102
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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I heard a loud crunch. Turning around I saw the ferry hull coming over my stern
doesnt look good for the ferry captain quite frankly

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Old 19-09-2013, 09:02   #103
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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doesnt look good for the ferry captain quite frankly

dave
Quite right. There is plenty of room in that channel and when the faster boat runs over the slower, the faster boat bears a great deal of responsibility. It sounds like the sailboat captain wasn't paying attention, so he also has some fault, but I believe he was run over from behind, which shifts a great deal of blame to the WSF captain. Ferries are not super tankers. They are highly maneuverable and have to be in order to dock in the kinds of currents we have up here, so this isn't a situation where some hapless fellow under sail in a shipping lane figures he has the right of way over a cargo ship doing 20 knots.
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Old 19-09-2013, 09:22   #104
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

Overtaking from behind, not constrained by draft.... I don't see there is any way out for the ferry captain. Kind of like rear ending a guy at a red light with perfectly good set of brakes. You're not going to do well in court. I wonder if she'll loose her job.
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Old 19-09-2013, 09:30   #105
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Re: What can happen when you cut off a ferry

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Overtaking from behind, not constrained by draft.... I don't see there is any way out for the ferry captain. Kind of like rear ending a guy at a red light with perfectly good set of brakes. You're not going to do well in court. I wonder if she'll loose her job.
Those ferries cook along pretty fast and I have seen them divert a thousand times to go around slower vessels, especially in Thatcher Pass, Peavine Pass and the pinch point between Shaw and Lopez. I have no idea, but I doubt this ferry saw this boat. I can't see any excuse, or imagine any set of facts that is good for this captain's career.
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