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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 09-06-2015, 23:31   #76
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

The law of the land in the United States regarding maritime navigation on the seas and inland waterways is 33 CFR Parts 81, 82, and 83. It is harmonized with the IMO COLREGs with the exception of additional rules regarding inland waterways and rivers that are not a part of the COLREGs. So while you can technically say that the COLREGs are not the law, they are completely harmonized with the International Navigational Rules Act of 1977, which is the law.

Another point that people have not discussed yet is the possibility of keeping a proper watch without using a human at all.

Seaborne drones already exist, and will become increasingly common in the future. It is already possible for electronic sensors to do a better job of detecting _anything_ than it is possible for a human to observe a thing, and the COLREGs actually require the use of all available means to maintain a proper watch--if you have radar, you MUST use it, according to the COLREGs.

FLIR, HD Radar, object detection from video, digital zooming and panning, and 360 degree cameras atop a mast, are all examples of systems better able to detect and alert to things than a human lookout. The ocean is actually a particularly simple environment for machine searching to accomplish at least as well as a human.

While of course these devices must be in proper operating order to be effective, so must a human. Any of them is better than a tired mariner at maintaining a watch.

The definition of a proper watch for the circumstances means a watch which resulted in no collisions. If you are involved in a collision and your vessel was capable of being underway at the time, you will be found proportionally to blame, no matter how you were effecting your watch, because it obviously didn't work. The majority of collision cases include a violation of Rule 5 for this reason.

A proper watch is a watch that can avoid collision under all conditions. The rule is deliberately vague so as to cast the widest possible net of accountability for actions and to ensure that everyone remains vigilant, especially as conditions deteriorate.

Often times, proper vigilance means using machine sensors because they can be more reliable than humans.
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Old 09-06-2015, 23:37   #77
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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 mstrebe View Post
The law of the land in the United States regarding maritime navigation on the seas and inland waterways is 33 CFR Parts 81, 82, and 83. It is harmonized with the IMO COLREGs with the exception of additional rules regarding inland waterways and rivers that are not a part of the COLREGs. So while you can technically say that the COLREGs are not the law, they are completely harmonized with the International Navigational Rules Act of 1977, which is the law.

Another point that people have not discussed yet is the possibility of keeping a proper watch without using a human at all. Actually, I thought it's been raised many times by quite a few.

Seaborne drones already exist, and will become increasingly common in the future. It is already possible for electronic sensors to do a better job of detecting _anything_ than it is possible for a human to observe a thing, and the COLREGs actually require the use of all available means to maintain a proper watch--if you have radar, you MUST use it, according to the COLREGs. What, perhaps a drone will follow along above us and feed back warnings if there is someone in the area. A bit like AIS and Radar ?

FLIR, HD Radar, object detection from video, digital zooming and panning, and 360 degree cameras atop a mast, are all examples of systems better able to detect and alert to things than a human lookout. The ocean is actually a particularly simple environment for machine searching to accomplish at least as well as a human.

While of course these devices must be in proper operating order to be effective, so must a human. Any of them is better than a tired mariner at maintaining a watch.

The definition of a proper watch for the circumstances means a watch which resulted in no collisions. If you are involved in a collision and your vessel was capable of being underway at the time, you will be found proportionally to blame, no matter how you were effecting your watch, because it obviously didn't work. The majority of collision cases include a violation of Rule 5 for this reason.

A proper watch is a watch that can avoid collision under all conditions. The rule is deliberately vague so as to cast the widest possible net of accountability for actions and to ensure that everyone remains vigilant, especially as conditions deteriorate.

Often times, proper vigilance means using machine sensors because they can be more reliable than humans.


umm, looking into the future, perhaps everyone will have AIS transponders and it will be compulsory.
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Old 09-06-2015, 23:57   #78
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

I'll take door # 2 as well.
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Old 10-06-2015, 01:02   #79
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pirate Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

Ahhh.. The Law.. a peculiar American Obsession..
The ColRegs are not LAW FFS.. Get over it..
They are an Internationally agreed collection of recommendations for proceedure at sea and are used to achive some harmony in matters Maritime.
If they were Law the USA would be in breach of every one as they openly flout them by having everything navigational opposite to the rest of the world.
Get over all this Legal Illegal Bullshit FFS and get a life.
Go Sailing or Something..
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Old 10-06-2015, 01:26   #80
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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The radar would not usually pick up small boats, especially wood or fiberglass. It was tuned to echo steel ships and back then sensitivity was not all that great. (70s-80s)
From solo on a steel boat I will be awake (cos the alarm goes off) to watch ships do a dog leg to give me more sea room on ais many miles away, often before they appear over the horizon.
It's very reassuring
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Old 10-06-2015, 01:36   #81
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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 Rustic Charm View Post
Dockhead, did you read my post 27? Or did you just respond to this one only?



Well, whether you find yourself in prison will depend on the 'Law' in the place you have transgressed. Which is exactly my point. In many places prison would not even be entertained as the various Acts and Regulations of the 'member states' of the IMO, have maximum penalties and jail is not one of them in most western nations.

I think what has happened is you did not read my post 27. Because we agree in the main emphasis that the Colregs are put into legislation by the member states and their own legislation. We also agree that ALL of the Colreg's should be followed. But I don't agree with is your claim that the Colreg's are LAW and it is the Colreg's you get prosecuted by for infringing.. It is not a piece of legislation. It has no persecution ability. It has no penalty ability either.

What I do find is helpful, is that if you are persecuted (which occurs under local jurisdiction and local laws), that court also has to refer to the Colreg's to prove the case. And a person so charged can refer to the Colreg's to dispute the charge. The courts of all member states have to concede to the Colregs in determining the case. So it works both ways.
You're in way over your head here, Rustic!

You're arguing for argument's sake in a fairly technical field which is not your own.

I doubt that it will be of any interest to the crowd here so I won't get into it deeply, but, for the record:

You are confusing a number of different concepts and coming up with oatmeal. You say treaties are not laws -- why do you think that? And -- what are the consequences? And what are "mere rules"? This is a mess.

COLREGS are laws, period. They are not "mere rules", whatever that is ("mere rules" is not a legal concept; you made that up). How the COLREGS got to be laws is more complicated. Whether they were laws before all the constitutional and domestic procedures of every signatory state was completed is a complicated question, and interesting to students of public international law, but irrelevant to this discussion, because the COLREGS have been implemented in all but a couple of countries. I will just say that in the U.S., treaties become law at the moment they are ratified in the constitutionally required way, and that the phrase "law of the land", which appears in the U.S. Constitution, is not rhetoric, shorthand, metaphor, or whatever -- it is precise legal language meaning that properly concluded treaties have the force of law, period. Other countries have their own constitutional procedures, but in the U.S., the COLREGS are law without the text even appearing in the official codes.

I believe one source of your confusion is the question of enforcement. You're an ex-cop, right? It's understandable, then. There is no world government or World Coast Guard (thank God), so enforcement is left up to the states (the signatory states could have established an international enforcement body and could have delegated enforcement powers to this body, but did not). What penalties to apply for violations of the COLREGS is, likewise, a matter for each individual state to decide (the signatory states could have also agreed on uniform penalties, but they did not). So every state has some additional laws and/or administrative regulations which determine penalties to be applied, what bodies are responsible for enforcement, etc., etc. But the penalties are applied for violation of the COLREGS themselves, not some local laws.

Why does none of this matter? It's a purely theoretical question, because even if the COLREGS were not law in their own right, they have been implemented word-for-word in every signatory state (which is exactly what the Convention required), so the result would be the same -- the COLREGS then, word for word, would be the law of the land in every signatory state by virtue of the enabling legislation, and so in force in the territorial waters of every signatory state with the force of law, and on the high seas with respect to every ship flagged by a signatory state. So what are we talking about? This is just argument for argument's sake.

The purely theoretical question, not relevant to cruisers, does have a right answer, and a wrong answer, however. If you're so much interested in it, take a course in Public International Law, or at least read a book on it, rather than just making it up.


What is relevant to cruisers, and to this thread, is very simple: what the COLREGS require of you, you are legally obligated to do, and you can be fined or imprisoned for violations of the COLREGS, and your boat can be seized. Period. Unless your boat is a narco-sub or otherwise stateless and unflagged, AND you are navigating on the high seas or the territorial waters of the Western Sahara (the only coastal state which is not IMO AFAIK).
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Old 10-06-2015, 01:54   #82
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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 estarzinger View Post
A "thought experiment" here: Let's say that a single hander knows with absolute certainty* that there are no vessels within say 48nm of him. So there is zero risk of collision for the next 10 minutes. Will/does he meet rule 5 if he then takes a 10 minute nap?

I suspect we will still have the same three groups that I presented in post 3.

(a) those who say he clearly still breaks rule 5 - because he is not "at all times" keeping a visual watch

(b) those who say he clearly is complying with rule 5 - because he has made a full appraisal of the situation and of the risk of collision appropriate in the prevailing circumstances and conditions

(c) and those who say it does not matter because he clearly is not going to have a collision


* for this hypothetical thought experiment perhaps the singlehander is an ex NSA/NRO officer and they have just called him and told him the 3cm resolution Sat picture shows absolutely no vessels around him. And 'the office' has agreed to take and scan those pictures (only) every 4 hrs for him - so there will be no eyeballs on him while he is napping, but he can be absolutely sure there are no vessels nearby when he naps.
Adding to this thought experiment.... What If.....
Solo sailor hove to and showed NUC Day and Night signals when not on watch.

Are the Rules being properly followed?
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Old 10-06-2015, 03:48   #83
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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 Dockhead View Post
You're in way over your head here, Rustic!

You're arguing for argument's sake in a fairly technical field which is not your own.

I doubt that it will be of any interest to the crowd here so I won't get into it deeply, but, for the record:

You are confusing a number of different concepts and coming up with oatmeal. You say treaties are not laws -- why do you think that? And -- what are the consequences? And what are "mere rules"? This is a mess.

COLREGS are laws, period. They are not "mere rules", whatever that is ("mere rules" is not a legal concept; you made that up). How the COLREGS got to be laws is more complicated. Whether they were laws before all the constitutional and domestic procedures of every signatory state was completed is a complicated question, and interesting to students of public international law, but irrelevant to this discussion, because the COLREGS have been implemented in all but a couple of countries. I will just say that in the U.S., treaties become law at the moment they are ratified in the constitutionally required way, and that the phrase "law of the land", which appears in the U.S. Constitution, is not rhetoric, shorthand, metaphor, or whatever -- it is precise legal language meaning that properly concluded treaties have the force of law, period. Other countries have their own constitutional procedures, but in the U.S., the COLREGS are law without the text even appearing in the official codes.

I believe one source of your confusion is the question of enforcement. You're an ex-cop, right? It's understandable, then. There is no world government or World Coast Guard (thank God), so enforcement is left up to the states (the signatory states could have established an international enforcement body and could have delegated enforcement powers to this body, but did not). What penalties to apply for violations of the COLREGS is, likewise, a matter for each individual state to decide (the signatory states could have also agreed on uniform penalties, but they did not). So every state has some additional laws and/or administrative regulations which determine penalties to be applied, what bodies are responsible for enforcement, etc., etc. But the penalties are applied for violation of the COLREGS themselves, not some local laws.

Why does none of this matter? It's a purely theoretical question, because even if the COLREGS were not law in their own right, they have been implemented word-for-word in every signatory state (which is exactly what the Convention required), so the result would be the same -- the COLREGS then, word for word, would be the law of the land in every signatory state by virtue of the enabling legislation, and so in force in the territorial waters of every signatory state with the force of law, and on the high seas with respect to every ship flagged by a signatory state. So what are we talking about? This is just argument for argument's sake.

The purely theoretical question, not relevant to cruisers, does have a right answer, and a wrong answer, however. If you're so much interested in it, take a course in Public International Law, or at least read a book on it, rather than just making it up.


What is relevant to cruisers, and to this thread, is very simple: what the COLREGS require of you, you are legally obligated to do, and you can be fined or imprisoned for violations of the COLREGS, and your boat can be seized. Period. Unless your boat is a narco-sub or otherwise stateless and unflagged, AND you are navigating on the high seas or the territorial waters of the Western Sahara (the only coastal state which is not IMO AFAIK).
You frequently respond like this Dockhead. I find the putting down of others who disagree with you quite disrespectful and a type of bullying. It's not nice. But I shall endeavour to remain civil and answer just a couple of things.

I can't find where you have quoted me as saying 'mere rules' Where did I say this? I apologise if I called the Colreg's 'mere rules'! I have a lot more respect for them than them being 'mere'. But I can't find where I claimed they were just 'mere rules'. ??? I certainly have not suggested the term 'mere rules' is a legal term. Where did you get this from? Your claiming I made something up as a legal term that I didn't even state!

The term 'Law of the Land', I concede you know best on this. I was not aware it was in your US constitution and I don't pretend to know about American Law.

The Colreg's are not LAW until they are put into legislation and the link I later provided of the International Maritime Organisation which administers the Colreg's state just that. Read their FAQ.

Yes, I'm an ex cop. I'm still a statutory officer in another field now for the past 8 years. I'm also an ordained Baptist Minister. Though I'm not in ministry now. (than you Lord ). The 'enforcement' of the Colreg's I don't have any confusion about. I don't believe I've even raised about enforcement.

And Yes, I agree it's just 'theoretical'. This is a forum Dockhead on a thread I began. You don't have to comment if you don't want to comment on a 'theoretical'. The reason I raised it was because some posters referred to being fined or a failure to be fined 'under the Colregs' and for 'breaching the Colregs'. Hence, I sought to clarify these statements. Don't like it Dockhead, don't comment. Simple.

The last thing I'll comment on and then I'm done. You claim a person can be 'fined or imprisoned for violations of the Colregs and your boat seized. Period".

Well, our little State of Tasmania is one of those States (of a member state of course of the IMO) of which has adopted the Colregs in it's entirety into our Marine and Safety (Collision) Regulations 2007, It's a tiny little piece of legislation that you would like because it simply adopts in Regulation 4 the entire Colreg's. Then in Regulation 5 it stipulates, 'a person must not contravene a provision of the International Regulations as adopted under regulation 4. Penalty: Fine not exceeding 50 penalty units. A penalty unit is currently $140. So the maximum for any breach of Colregs in Tasmania is $21000. No imprisonment, no boat seized, no millions of dollars in fines as you claim Dockhead. It's not a Crime here as you claim either. And if you get busted and get an infringement for breaching one of the rules, and decide to fight it, the complaint for such an offence will be written out as a breach of Regulation 5 of the Marine and Safety (Collision) Regulations 2007. Not the Colregs!

I'm done. There, I stayed civil. Can you?
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Old 10-06-2015, 04:29   #84
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Why does none of this matter? It's a purely theoretical question, because even if the COLREGS were not law in their own right, they have been implemented word-for-word in every signatory state (which is exactly what the Convention required), so the result would be the same -- the COLREGS then, word for word, would be the law of the land in every signatory state by virtue of the enabling legislation, and so in force in the territorial waters of every signatory state with the force of law, and on the high seas with respect to every ship flagged by a signatory state. So what are we talking about? This is just argument for argument's sake.
Hey Dockhead.. yeah I know I said I was finished. But just been sent a suggestion, which I wasn't going to go looking for, but hey, here it is. You notice your insistence that the Colregs are 'word for word' in each state, claiming the convention requires it?

Well, take a look at the New Zealand Maritime Transport Act of 1994, 36 (g) and 36 (u) your after, part 22. It would seem they have ignored your requirements. I wonder now what other examples there are out there.
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Old 10-06-2015, 04:35   #85
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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 Rustic Charm View Post
You frequently respond like this Dockhead. I find the putting down of others who disagree with you quite disrespectful and a type of bullying. It's not nice. But I shall endeavour to remain civil and answer just a couple of things.

I can't find where you have quoted me as saying 'mere rules' Where did I say this? I apologise if I called the Colreg's 'mere rules'! I have a lot more respect for them than them being 'mere'. But I can't find where I claimed they were just 'mere rules'. ??? I certainly have not suggested the term 'mere rules' is a legal term. Where did you get this from? Your claiming I made something up as a legal term that I didn't even state!

The term 'Law of the Land', I concede you know best on this. I was not aware it was in your US constitution and I don't pretend to know about American Law.

The Colreg's are not LAW until they are put into legislation and the link I later provided of the International Maritime Organisation which administers the Colreg's state just that. Read their FAQ.

Yes, I'm an ex cop. I'm still a statutory officer in another field now for the past 8 years. I'm also an ordained Baptist Minister. Though I'm not in ministry now. (than you Lord ). The 'enforcement' of the Colreg's I don't have any confusion about. I don't believe I've even raised about enforcement.

And Yes, I agree it's just 'theoretical'. This is a forum Dockhead on a thread I began. You don't have to comment if you don't want to comment on a 'theoretical'. The reason I raised it was because some posters referred to being fined or a failure to be fined 'under the Colregs' and for 'breaching the Colregs'. Hence, I sought to clarify these statements. Don't like it Dockhead, don't comment. Simple.

The last thing I'll comment on and then I'm done. You claim a person can be 'fined or imprisoned for violations of the Colregs and your boat seized. Period".

Well, our little State of Tasmania is one of those States (of a member state of course of the IMO) of which has adopted the Colregs in it's entirety into our Marine and Safety (Collision) Regulations 2007, It's a tiny little piece of legislation that you would like because it simply adopts in Regulation 4 the entire Colreg's. Then in Regulation 5 it stipulates, 'a person must not contravene a provision of the International Regulations as adopted under regulation 4. Penalty: Fine not exceeding 50 penalty units. A penalty unit is currently $140. So the maximum for any breach of Colregs in Tasmania is $21000. No imprisonment, no boat seized, no millions of dollars in fines as you claim Dockhead. It's not a Crime here as you claim either. And if you get busted and get an infringement for breaching one of the rules, and decide to fight it, the complaint for such an offence will be written out as a breach of Regulation 5 of the Marine and Safety (Collision) Regulations 2007. Not the Colregs!

I'm done. There, I stayed civil. Can you?
Just defending truth and understanding, and fighting confusion and falsehood. It's nothing personal, Rustic! I used to teach this stuff (Con Law and Public International Law), so can't let it pass when false or confusing information is posted. I would expect the same from you if I posted some bold statements on Baptist theology, which were wrong. In fact I would be GRATEFUL to you for straightening me out. I've learned a lot on this board, actually, tons and tons, from people with more knowledge on a given subject, correcting my mistaken ideas. But what's crucial is knowing what you don't know. Actually Aristotle said that that's the whole key to wisdom.

Some things you've said about the COLREGS, not just here but in previous discussions, sound to my ears, as if someone had boldly said to you, with the full force of his own convictions, that "Baptists can only take Communion if they've drunk the blood of Muslim babies sacrificed under a full moon." I would expect a robust reponse from you, as a Baptist minister, to such a statement. Polite, but rather firm. Well when you say something like "the COLREGS are not law", you're going to get exactly the same kind of response, from anyone who has professional knowledge of the subject.

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Old 10-06-2015, 04:44   #86
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

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Just defending truth and understanding, and fighting confusion and falsehood. It's nothing personal, Rustic! I used to teach this stuff (Con Law and Public International Law), so can't let it pass when false or confusing information is posted. I would expect the same from you if I posted some bold statements on Baptist theology, which were wrong. In fact I would be GRATEFUL to you for straightening me out. I've learned a lot on this board, actually, tons and tons, from people with more knowledge on a given subject, correcting my mistaken ideas. But what's crucial is knowing what you don't know. Actually Aristotle said that that's the whole key to wisdom.

Some things you've said about the COLREGS, not just here but in previous discussions, sound to my ears, as if someone had boldly said to you, with the full force of his own convictions, that "Baptists can only take Communion if they've drunk the blood of Muslim babies sacrificed under a full moon." I would expect a robust reponse from you, as a Baptist minister, to such a statement. Polite, but rather firm. Well when you say something like "the COLREGS are not law", you're going to get exactly the same kind of response, from anyone who has professional knowledge of the subject.

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There you go again. Belittling me and suggesting I have no professional knowledge of the subject. And Baptist's are so diverse throughout the world you probably can find someone that thinks that. I know you yanks have Baptists that let snakes bite them as some sort of test of faith.
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Old 10-06-2015, 04:46   #87
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

For anyone who is interested other than Dockhead, you will find a very interesting argument in the following link from a Canadian legal firm that refers to cases that view the Colreg's as 'guidelines' and not laws.


Understanding Marine Collision Regulations
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Old 10-06-2015, 05:06   #88
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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 Rustic Charm View Post
For anyone who is interested other than Dockhead, you will find a very interesting argument in the following link from a Canadian legal firm that refers to cases that view the Colreg's as 'guidelines' and not laws.


Understanding Marine Collision Regulations
Google is a great way to find knowledge and learn things, but you have to actually read the sources you turn up that way , and not just the headline

That article is about CIVIL liability arising from COLREGS violations -- the right of one mariner to sue another mariner for damages, in case of an accident. The point is that a COLREGS violation cannot automatically be the basis of a lawsuit -- we talked about that earlier in the thread. That's because the source of liability in a civil matter is negligence or other duties of care established by domestic law; the COLREGS can only be a guideline for whether or not a duty of care existed under domestic law. Just because one mariner violated some obligation in the COLREGS does not by itself prove that he is responsible for the accident. We also talked about that earlier in the thread.

The article does not at all say that the COLREGS are merely "guidelines", where criminal or administrative liability is concerned, that is, the question of whether you can be fined or sent to jail, as opposed to paying damages to another mariner.

You said somewhere that you never wrote that the COLREGS are "mere rules". But here you are trying to cite authority that the COLREGS are merely guidelines. And again wrongly. What can I say.

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Old 10-06-2015, 05:32   #89
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pirate Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

The LAW in the free world only gets involved in cases involving personal injury or death is a result of the incident..
Otherwise its just between Insurance companies
Working on your theories the ports both sides of the English Channel would be jam packed with seized commercial and leisure vessels..
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Old 10-06-2015, 05:46   #90
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Re: All about the Colregs no 3 - single handed sailing and keeping a look out

Quote:
Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
The LAW in the free world only gets involved in cases involving personal injury or death is a result of the incident..
Otherwise its just between Insurance companies
Working on your theories the ports both sides of the English Channel would be jam packed with seized commercial and leisure vessels..
Ah, the bliss of the man whose mind is far offshore, and away from all this dreary legal stuff. Good on you Phil; wish I could have my head in the same place. Maybe some day.

I know you don't care much about it, but what you say is not correct, Phil. The RYA says it best:

"One of the biggest misconceptions about the COLREGS is they are a guidance document, something to help skippers understand who has ‘right of way’ in potential collision situations. Wrong! They are the law and you have to comply with the lot.

. . .

Failure to comply with the COLREGS – and by that it means a collision doesn’t even need to have occurred, simply that the regulations have been breached – is a criminal offence with a maximum penalty of two years in prison and/or an unlimited fine determined by a Law Court, depending on the severity of the incident."


http://www.rya.org.uk/newsevents/ene...ov13-uptospeed



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