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View Poll Results: Can you legally sail solo single handed
Yes, as long as you use all available means to keep a look out 66 62.26%
No, all solo sailors are in breach of the Colregs 29 27.36%
The Colregs are intended for two handed sailors not one 3 2.83%
What's the Colregs? 9 8.49%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 106. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 15-06-2015, 07:18   #316
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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I wouldn't bet on that; they've got Braille on the pin pads at the drive through restaurant windows.





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Old 15-06-2015, 07:19   #317
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

What about autonomous or unmanned vessels? Apparently there is a DARPA project to build autonomous ships, and according to some news reports at least one unmanned ship performed a 42 day journey while in compliance with the colregs...

Autonomous Vessel tested at sea is COLREGs Compliant | futurenautics.com

There is also an official EU sponsored program for unmanned ships as wel:

MUNIN | MUNIN – Maritime Unmanned Navigation through Intelligence in Networks

We might actually see unmanned cargo ships in the future.

This al got me to wonder a bit. Rule 5 says that you should maintain a proper lookout at all times. It does not, as afar as I can see, require the lookout to be done by a human.
What if one were to install a system that uses cameras (infrared and visual) and directional microphones to continuously scan the surroundings for ships. I could imagine that such a system would even perform even better than a human watch stander. Would a solo sailor, equipped with such a system be in breach of rule 5 if he goes inside and has a nap?
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Old 12-09-2015, 17:21   #318
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

I'm sure we are talking about long distance solo sailors, at least 24 hours, where sleep is needed.

I voted yes. Maybe it is a bit like the 2nd amendment? When that was written they didn't have machine guns people could buy at the store. So maybe the college were written before single handing was as common as it is.
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Old 03-02-2017, 06:57   #319
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

Just saying again, red over red is quite acceptable anytime there's some reason there's noboby manouvering a vessel. In these pictures a fishing boat and a whale watching boat with permanently rigged red over red lights, which are also used for any reason th bridge is unmanned.
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Old 03-02-2017, 07:33   #320
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Just saying again, red over red is quite acceptable anytime there's some reason there's noboby manouvering a vessel. In these pictures a fishing boat and a whale watching boat with permanently rigged red over red lights, which are also used for any reason th bridge is unmanned.
NUC status is much abused. Most flagrantly, by tankers drifting while waiting for a load, which I think was mentioned earlier in this thread.

But it is not, actually, "quite acceptable", to show NUC whenever you feel like abandoning the bridge. The Rule says:

"(f) The term "vessel not under command" means a vessel which through some exceptional circumstance is unable to maneuver as required by these Rules and is therefore unable to keep out of the way of another vessel."

"Exceptional circumstance" means something unavoidable -- a mechanical failure, or perhaps, incapacity of the entire crew. Just leaving the bridge to watch whales or fish is not that. Or sleep.


I do think, however, that showing NUC is a good thing, for single handed sailors who have hove-to to get some sleep. It may not be technically legal, but it's a good practical solution which is, in my opinion, better than the alternatives.
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Old 03-02-2017, 07:48   #321
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pirate Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

Considering the handful of folks who 'truly' singlehand as opposed to those who bitch about it..
Much Ado About Nothing'
As evidenced by the total lack of persecution of solo sailors on the waters by the Agencies.
As for in the case of a collision.. it'll be investigated whether its crewed boats or solo.. and blame proportionally accorded.
Bitch all you want but that's how it is.
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Old 03-02-2017, 07:54   #322
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Considering the handful of folks who 'truly' singlehand as opposed to those who bitch about it..
Much Ado About Nothing'
As evidenced by the total lack of persecution of solo sailors on the waters by the Agencies.
As for in the case of a collision.. it'll be investigated whether its crewed boats or solo.. and blame proportionally accorded.
Bitch all you want but that's how it is.
That's right, and I think we discussed it.

We've been arguing about whether it is technically illegal or not.

In my opinion, it IS illegal. But as Boatman points out -- it doesn't really matter all that much. Single-handing is tolerated, and has to be considered by others using the sea. That's really why I think showing NUC is right -- even though that's also technically illegal. It is a PRACTICAL solution, which informs other mariners, that no one is on the bridge. Unlike whale-watchers and fishermen, for whom I have no sympathy, because they are simply short-handed or lazy, single-handers do have an imperative necessity to get some sleep once in a while.
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Old 03-02-2017, 08:00   #323
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Originally Posted by K_V_B View Post
What about autonomous or unmanned vessels? Apparently there is a DARPA project to build autonomous ships, and according to some news reports at least one unmanned ship performed a 42 day journey while in compliance with the colregs...

Autonomous Vessel tested at sea is COLREGs Compliant | futurenautics.com

There is also an official EU sponsored program for unmanned ships as wel:

MUNIN | MUNIN – Maritime Unmanned Navigation through Intelligence in Networks

We might actually see unmanned cargo ships in the future.

This al got me to wonder a bit. Rule 5 says that you should maintain a proper lookout at all times. It does not, as afar as I can see, require the lookout to be done by a human.
What if one were to install a system that uses cameras (infrared and visual) and directional microphones to continuously scan the surroundings for ships. I could imagine that such a system would even perform even better than a human watch stander. Would a solo sailor, equipped with such a system be in breach of rule 5 if he goes inside and has a nap?
The Rule says "by sight and by hearing as well as blah blah blah so as to make a full appraisal of the situation and or the risk of collision."

This contemplates that someone is making a "full appraisal of the situation", based on data received from eyes and ears.

Can a robot do that as well as a human? I don't have the slightest doubt, that we will pretty soon see systems capable of doing that, just as we are about to see practical driverless cars. But no such system exists so far today, so you can't comply with the rules -- so far! -- without having a human "appraising the situation" based on the best data available.
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Old 03-02-2017, 08:08   #324
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pirate Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

Speaking as someone who's singlehanded a lot and been T-boned by a boat with 4 crew during daylight in perfect vis.. we're not the danger.. You Are..
But seriously.. at night I'll heave to and slowly fore reach with just my normal red, green and 180 white.. I am underway and obviously going slow to stationary so anyone with a modicum of experience keeping watch should be able to ascertain a safe crossing point for themselves.
If you happen to be one off the boneheads who puts right of way ahead of common sense then a collision maybe will occur.. lots of evidence of these types on YouTube..
Otherwise.. you'll alter course and bellow 'Dickhead' as you pass.. something I do at crewed boats from time to time..
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Old 03-02-2017, 08:17   #325
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Speaking as someone who's singlehanded a lot and been T-boned by a boat with 4 crew during daylight in perfect vis.. we're not the danger.. You Are..
But seriously.. at night I'll heave to and slowly fore reach with just my normal red, green and 180 white.. I am underway and obviously going slow to stationary so anyone with a modicum of experience keeping watch should be able to ascertain a safe crossing point for themselves.
If you happen to be one off the boneheads who puts right of way ahead of common sense then a collision maybe will occur.. lots of evidence of these types on YouTube..
Otherwise.. you'll alter course and bellow 'Dickhead' as you pass.. something I do at crewed boats from time to time..
LOL.

And if you were showing NUC, then others would not assume that you're alert and on watch and prepared to maneuver. Would be better, no?

However, I think with or without NUC, slowly forereaching and showing any kind of lights (maybe a deck light would be good, too), is pretty reasonable, as long as you are far out of the shipping lanes. You do run a risk of getting run down and killed by a ship not keeping a good watch, but you are endangering only yourself.

But if you had loud AIS and radar guard zone alarms, even this risk is eliminated almost to zero.

I single hand a fair amount, but my insurance restricts me from doing this more than 24 hours at a time, so I don't sleep while single handing.

If I did need to get some sleep, I would do it in the salon (cockpit is too cold in my latitudes) with the alarms turned all the way up, and I would not be too worried.
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:05   #326
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Unlike whale-watchers and fishermen, for whom I have no sympathy, because they are simply short-handed or lazy, single-handers do have an imperative necessity to get some sleep once in a while.
Whale-watchers must have those lights to get the permit to operate and are obliged to use them too as the authorities know how they are operated..
IMHO use any lights which give the most accurate status of the boat. Never mind if it's not literally so or so...

BR Teddy
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:11   #327
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Whale-watchers must have those lights to get the permit to operate and are obliged to use them too as the authorities know how they are operated..
IMHO use any lights which give the most accurate status of the boat. Never mind if it's not literally so or so...

BR Teddy
We can sort of agree about that -- I am certainly in favor of communicating the nav status of the vessel, even if it's a violation.


But for God's sake, those vessels are COMMERCIAL. They ought to be required to be adequately manned, so that they don't leave the bridge unattended. That's just crazy, in my opinion. With paying passengers on board no less!
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:36   #328
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Hi folks, thought I'd put up another one of these questions for your posturing. This time about rule number 5

Rule 5
Look-out
. Every vessel shall at all times maintain a proper look-out by sight and hearing as well as by all available means appropriate in the prevailing circumstances and conditions so as to make a full appraisal of the situation and of the risk of collision

The question is does a single handed sailor break this rule? Is it unlawful to be a solo sailor?

This is just for fun, knowledge and socialising, so be nice.
Don't forget the poll. You can answer as many as you like.
The poll doesn't include an option to sail for a day single handed and then anchor at night. You would need a portable head to do this.

The COLREGS (and common sense) require a lookout at all times so you can't legally use an auto pilot and go below to sleep (or poop).
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:52   #329
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

I should note that the few times I've been boarded while underway, the CG never once asked about a proper lookout.

Mind you it's hard keeping a proper look out when your down below showing the CG your three way valve is closed, that the registration/ papers are in order and the proper placecards are located in the engine compartment. You know the really important thingy's...

If they don't enforce it, it must not be a law they care about.
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:58   #330
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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We can sort of agree about that -- I am certainly in favor of communicating the nav status of the vessel, even if it's a violation.


But for God's sake, those vessels are COMMERCIAL. They ought to be required to be adequately manned, so that they don't leave the bridge unattended. That's just crazy, in my opinion. With paying passengers on board no less!
Even if the helm is unmanned doesn't mean there's no lookout, just they are unable to maneuver in short notice. The same goes with restricted ability as you can't reverse while a droque is deployed..
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