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View Poll Results: Does a vessel ever have Right of Way over other vessels?
No - a vessel does not have 'right of way' 23 36.51%
yes- vessels have 'right of way' depending on the circumstances. 5 7.94%
The COLREGS define who has 'right of way' 4 6.35%
The COLREGS do not refer to 'right of way' at all. 42 66.67%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 63. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-03-2015, 04:22   #241
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Re: All things COLREGS

Quote:
Originally Posted by El Pinguino View Post
About 10 years ago north bound in Sunda Strait, daylight, afternoon 12 to 4...
Maintaining a watching brief in the wheelhouse, lotsa water, no south bound ships.
Two ships about a point or so on the port bow, steady bearings....
Sat and watched... asked to 2/0... ' watcha gunna do' ?
'oh stand on.....'
'OK I'll take the con'... altered about 10 degrees to port at about 5 miles and passed astern of them.
2/0 'but but...'
They were 40,000 tonne ( mas o menos) coal ships slow steaming ( 5 knots... we were doing 20) and a few miles of the Merak pilot boarding ground.....they couldn't get out of their own way ...let alone ours
The 2/0 was still banging on about it days later and quoting rules and *****... common sense is an uncommon virtue.

He stuffed up again a month or so later and my relief sacked him... probably working in a school of nav somewhere these days.
Rule 2 sez:

" In construing and complying with these Rules due regard shall be had to all dangers of navigation and collision and to any special circumstances, including the limitations of the vessels involved, which may make a departure from these Rules necessary to avoid immediate danger. "

What you did was entirely correct. It's very common for fast vessels to not stand-on to very slow ones, for the reason you state -- the maneuver of a vessel travelling at 1/4 your speed may be entirely ineffectual -- "can't get out of its own way."

The Red Jet ferries in the Solent, and the fast cat ferries in the Channel, just steer around all traffic like playing a video game. No point to doing any standing on for them -- can you imagine a 40 knot vessel standing on and waiting for a small sailboat under motor to give way at 6 knots? It's ludicrous, and the COLREGS don't require you to do ludicrous or dangerous things.


Another lesson in this situation is for those sailors who think that they will just always give way to "tonnage", no matter what the rules say -- they have a highly exaggerated idea of the effectiveness of their own maneuvers. It is especially important to stand on when required to do so, when in open water you encounter a much faster vessel.
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Old 12-03-2015, 04:32   #242
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Re: All things COLREGS

So fast gives way to slow.
I will remember that at my average cruising speed on 4 kts
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Old 12-03-2015, 04:37   #243
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Re: All things COLREGS

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
The "not to be impeded" vessel has no obligation to stand on. I think the key to understanding this, is to keep in mind that "not impeding" is very different from "giving way", and occurs at a different phase of an encounter.

It's confusing, and I think it's a badly constructed part of the COLREGS, but there are some clues, added in a later edition of the Rules to try to clear up the confusion:


8(e)(i). A vessel which, by any of these Rules, is required not to impede the passage or safe passage of another vessel shall, when required by the circumstances of the case, take early action to allow sufficient sea-room for the safe passage of the other vessel.

(ii). A vessel required not to impede the passage or safe passage of another vessel is not relieved of this obligation if approaching the other vessel so as to involve risk of collision and shall, when taking action, have full regard to the action which may be required by the Rules of this part.

(iii). A vessel the passage of which is not to be impeded remains fully obliged to comply with the Rules of this part when the two vessels are approaching one another so as to involve risk of collision.




So "not impeding" takes place before the steering and sailing rules come into effect -- before a risk of collision (or vessels getting within sight of one another) arises.

Basically, it mean you have to wait for the coast to be clear before crossing the TSS. The vessel "not to be impeded" does not stand-on, because you never get to that phase. Ideally, he never even notices you.

The test of whether you have fulfilled this requirement or not is whether the "not to be impeded" vessel had to alter course or not. If you got into a steering & sailing rules situation where someone had to give way and someone had to stand on, then you failed to "not impede" -- that's Lodesman's interpretation, as I recall, and I haven't heard a more convincing one.

Once you get to steering and sailing rules, the "not to be impeded" vessel may at the very same time become the give-way vessel -- which seems like a paradox (which bothered me no end when we first started discussing this). The amendments to the Rules clearly say this, though -- "A vessel the passage of which is not to be impeded remains fully obliged to comply with the Rules of this part when the two vessels are approaching one another so as to involve risk of collision." And yet the obligation of the now stand-on vessel to "not impede" also stays in effect -- "A vessel required not to impede the passage or safe passage of another vessel is not relieved of this obligation if approaching the other vessel so as to involve risk of collision and shall, when taking action, have full regard to the action which may be required by the Rules of this part."

It means you might be required to "not impede" and also to stand-on at the very same time -- quite a trick, eh? I resolve the apparent paradox like this -- standing-on and giving-way is just an order of maneuver to resolve a potential collision, notwithstanding words like "keep out of the way of", which do appear in the steering & sailing rules. So who maneuvers how and when has nothing to do with who is obligated to "not impede". If you are a sailboat obligated to "not impede", and you get into a steering and sailing rules situation with a vessel which is "not to be impeded", then you do your standing on and giving way as usual under the steering and sailing rules, but all the while you are still doing your best to do them in a way which avoids, to the extent possible, impeding the other vessel. I guess that means -- stand on for the minimum time required, try to put your boat in the place which causes the least disruption to the course of the other vessel, within the requirements of the Rules, however.




Dave will know how hard it is to fulfill "not impeding" in the Dover Straits, with ships lined up a couple of miles apart all the way to the horizon.

What I do is put on as much speed as I can and aim to pass close behind one vessel in the line.

If I can't pass at least a mile ahead of the next vessel in line, I don't go. And a mile is really pushing it. If the traffic is that dense, then the best thing to do is usually join the flow, and scoot over just behind one ship when you see a decent gap. That's what was advised to me by an English Channel ship captain. Not always possible when you're under sail.

I hate to pass less than three miles ahead of a fast moving ship and only do it when there's no other way. In such cases, I will usually violate the MCA recommendation about not using the VHF, and call the bridge of the ship I'm going to pass ahead of, so that they know I will be darting out ahead of them and nobody freaks out.
I agree with what you say. However, as you sourself note - the "not to impede" occurs BEFORE the steering rules come into effect.

Now before the steering rules come into effect - in essence we all have a "right of way" , we can sail any damn where we want. The colregs are not inforce until we get in a situation where the steering rules come into play.

At that point - the "not to be impeded" vessel becomes burdened with the obligation to maintain course and speed, thereby allowing the give way vessel to perform a maneuver that avoids the collision.

So - sorry, I'm not convinced that there is a "right of way" once the steering and sailing rules come into effect
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Old 12-03-2015, 05:18   #244
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Re: All things COLREGS

Goboatingnow: To return to my car analogy. I drive down a busy two lane highway , with a minor road crossing it. I of course , monitor the crossing and it's traffic , just like a ship is obligated to do exactly the same

The difference is I have a right of way , the obligation rests 100% with the driver on the minor road to perform a safe crossing , I can simply assume that he will stop at the stop signs and only proceed when the way is clear. That is not to say I do not maintain a " lookout "

That is a right of way

At sea this does not apply. Both vessels in a crossing maintain obligations to avoid collisions. The nearest analogy with road users , might be the four way stop .

I see no interpretation on this thread that changes the view of many that rights are not conferred by the COLREGS in any circumstances



The problem with this understanding is that it is in no way accurate. It is a common understanding of the road traffic rules I give you that, but it is entirely wrong. Like Dockhead you are using this mistaken understanding of the Road Traffic Rules to argue against the use of the words in a marine situation. Your claim that an obligation lay 100% with the driver on the minor road to perform a safe crossing and your 'assumption' that he will stop, will in nearly every case loose you your civil claim and in some places will see you charged with an offence. This is 'not' a 'right of way'. It is merely a common misunderstanding of what a 'right of way' is. If you were to try to argue this case in a court of Law you would loose. in some countries you could even go to jail if someone is seriously hurt because you 'assumed' the other person was going to do the correct thing (Ethiopia and even little old Tasmania).


People who have done advanced driving lessons will often cover this in detail and the 'right of way' is always a major part of it. And far from what Dockhead thinks of myself having understood the COLREGS from the shadow of the Road Traffic Rules, having completed during my police days advanced defensive driving lessons, which are all entirely defensive, this deeper understanding has helped me understand some aspects of the COLREGS far better. Especially the 'stand on' rule.

(I am not pretending to know a lot of other aspects of the COLREGS and certainly not as much as yourself, but as to the meaning of stand on then yes)





CarstenB: Despite my longstanding respect for Lodesman and his comprehensive knowledge of the COLREGS (Lodesman - you are much, much more knowledgeable than I), I have to agree with Dave.

As dockhead pointed out, there are several phases in a sailing situation.
1- determining if there is a potential collision situation
2- early avoidance of such situation
3- action must be taken to avoid a collision. (sailing and steering rules)

I would argue that despite the terms "burdened" and privileged" (now defunct), both boats actually become "burdened" with an obligation.

The give way vessel is burdened with the responsibility to "give way" and thereby avoid the collision.

The stand on vessel is also burdened with responsibility - the responsibilty to maintain course and speed.

My further argument is that whenever you are "burdened" with any responsibility, then your "rights" are infringed (to some greater or lesser degree).

So the so-called "right of way" even in Lodesman's definition (which I believe is so abstract as to not have an application in the real world), ceases to be a "right", since a right is something you can choose to utilize or not.

Once obligated by the rules to maintain course and speed -the stand on vessel no longer has a choice in the matter (until a collision is imminent where all bets are off). In other words - his "right" has been infringed upon.






In suggesting that whenever you are 'burdened' with any responsibility, then your 'rights' are infringed is also using the same erroneous understanding of what a 'right' is. Far from Lodesman's definition as being 'too abstract as to not have an application in the real world' I suspect it's more a case that you did not understand what he was suggesting. Perhaps being coloured by the same erroneous understanding of the road rules as Goboatingnow and of Dockhead.


The bottom line to me seems to be a common but erroneous understanding of the Road Traffic Rules, which has it's foundations in an exceptionally common misunderstanding of the term in the English language called 'right' 'rights'. As there appears to be absolutely no debate about the word in the phrase 'way', I'll continue to assume it's acceptable to understand 'way' as the path/course one is travelling and so I won't go any further into that.


The Modern English language is heavily influenced by it's Christian theology which has it's foundations in Coin Greek and later Latin languages (mostly French and Germanic early origins). This is the influence of almost 2000 years of religion on the language of the common people. The term so frequently being referred here to 'right' erroneously as some form of 'absolute' comes from 'righteousness', the 'righteous path' the 'righteous way'. Far from being an absolute, it implies an encouragement to 'hold fast the righteous way', which is obviously a religious meaning as many English constructs are. If you think of it in this way, then it even makes more sense of the very new term of 'stand on', which is referring to 'stand on the correct or righteous path'. With this meaning of the term 'right', at least the foundations of the word in English, then it cannot possibly lead to obligations being either negating or 'infringing'. Not with this meaning. The only way this could be true is if you ignore the correct meaning of the word in our language and replace it with a common modern misunderstanding of an individual authority, what some of you call 'my rights'. These 'rights' are commonly legal, social or ethical 'rights' which again come from 'right' but are further teased for a specific context of usually social ethics.


If there is a beneficial reason to dispense with the term 'right of way', it's not because of it's true original meaning, but because too many commonly mistake the meaning of it. Perhaps that's why the 'right of way' terminology was not used in the COLREGS? I'm not sure. But what I am convinced of is that if people are going to understand the 'stand on' rule to be the erroneous 'opposite' meaning to 'right of way', due to an erroneous understanding of 'right of way', then the full meaning of the marine term 'stand on' is still being missed by many. Because the true meaning of the terms 'right of way', as expressed through it's English meaning, rather than it's common 20th and 21st meaning has much more of a connection to a vessel than is 'standing on' than many understand it.


To hold the 'right of way' is to 'stand fast to the righteous path'. The French I'm pretty sure call it the 'priority path'. The religious phrase includes an encouragement which is not lost in the marine term 'stand on', which is an encouragement to stand fast the right path'. The problem with calling it an obligation to stand fast is that it looses the then necessary aspect that some of you are so worried about with the term 'right of way' in that the intention is not to 'stand on' as an absolute. Then this has led to some asking the question about how long to 'stand on' for.


But this is all academic and whilst I appreciate that some sailors sail in such busy places that others of us, including myself will never need to sail, there is still even more the need to understand the rules in their most practical sense. Hence, to me, 'right of way' or perhaps the 'priority way' means more to common folk. The insistence that there is no 'right of way' on the water is both in error and complicates the very practical and common sense meaning of it. That is, as long as people truly understand the road rules when driving a car. And the answer to reducing the dismal Road Traffic deaths across the globe is better education in the road rules. Not the continued spreading or accepting of erroneous road traffic beliefs.

My view. I won't labour on. Peace to all.
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Old 12-03-2015, 05:38   #245
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Re: All things COLREGS

Quote:
Originally Posted by carstenb View Post
I agree with what you say. However, as you sourself note - the "not to impede" occurs BEFORE the steering rules come into effect.

Now before the steering rules come into effect - in essence we all have a "right of way" , we can sail any damn where we want. The colregs are not inforce until we get in a situation where the steering rules come into play.

At that point - the "not to be impeded" vessel becomes burdened with the obligation to maintain course and speed, thereby allowing the give way vessel to perform a maneuver that avoids the collision.

So - sorry, I'm not convinced that there is a "right of way" once the steering and sailing rules come into effect
I misspoke - I meant before Section II rules (vessels in sight of one another) come into effect. Section I (any visibility) is also part of S&S rules; sorry for this error.

Rule 18 comes into effect only when vessels are in sight of one another and risk of collision exists. Rules 9 and 10 are always in effect. So "not impeding" under Rules 9 and 10 needs to happen before risk of collision arises (and/or before vessels are in sight of one another). The not-to-be impeded vessel does NOT stand on - he has no burdens so far. That's why Lodesman thinks it's something like a right of way.
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Old 12-03-2015, 05:55   #246
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Re: All things COLREGS

Another point of view:
Stand-on vessel must mantain it's course and speed, so it's burdened ie has no rights to change anything.
Give-way vessel can choose almost any reasonble manouver they like to, just to get of the way of the "non manouvering" stand-on vessel, so it's got the "right of way" to turn, stop, dive or fly, whatever they are capable of doing.

BR Teddy
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Old 12-03-2015, 05:59   #247
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Re: All things COLREGS

Quote:
Goboatingnow: To return to my car analogy. I drive down a busy two lane highway , with a minor road crossing it. I of course , monitor the crossing and it's traffic , just like a ship is obligated to do exactly the same

The difference is I have a right of way , the obligation rests 100% with the driver on the minor road to perform a safe crossing , I can simply assume that he will stop at the stop signs and only proceed when the way is clear. That is not to say I do not maintain a " lookout "

That is a right of way

At sea this does not apply. Both vessels in a crossing maintain obligations to avoid collisions. The nearest analogy with road users , might be the four way stop .

I see no interpretation on this thread that changes the view of many that rights are not conferred by the COLREGS in any circumstances


The problem with this understanding is that it is in no way accurate. It is a common understanding of the road traffic rules I give you that, but it is entirely wrong. Like Dockhead you are using this mistaken understanding of the Road Traffic Rules to argue against the use of the words in a marine situation. Your claim that an obligation lay 100% with the driver on the minor road to perform a safe crossing and your 'assumption' that he will stop, will in nearly every case loose you your civil claim and in some places will see you charged with an offence. This is 'not' a 'right of way'. It is merely a common misunderstanding of what a 'right of way' is. If you were to try to argue this case in a court of Law you would loose. in some countries you could even go to jail if someone is seriously hurt because you 'assumed' the other person was going to do the correct thing (Ethiopia and even little old Tasmania
Not to get sidetracked, But as a person who infringed this rule ( many years ago) why trying to see if the traffic on the major road was clear and put the bonnet of a long vehicle over the stop line, I was adjudged entirely and 100% responsible as I in effect " failed to stop" No blame was apportioned to the other driver, who was passing the junction with a " right of way". There was an accident as he collided with me


What this argument has descended to its some proponents of a presumed right of way , arguably the semantics of the term, rather then acknowledge that no such right , however defined is included in the IRPCS.

The opponents on the other hand have in my view quite rightly retained their steadfast ness.
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Old 12-03-2015, 06:01   #248
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Re: All things COLREGS

Sweet. So what's the next topic?

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Old 12-03-2015, 06:09   #249
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Re: All things COLREGS

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post

Rule 18 comes into effect only when vessels are in sight of one another and risk of collision exists. Rules 9 and 10 are always in effect. So "not impeding" under Rules 9 and 10 needs to happen before risk of collision arises (and/or before vessels are in sight of one another). The not-to-be impeded vessel does NOT stand on - he has no burdens so far. That's why Lodesman thinks it's something like a right of way.
Indeed, but it is , an impossible, stretch of semantics to claim that a vessel which should not be impeded has been imbued with any 'right' of any kind, irrespective of the semantic meanderings that have taken place here.


The COLREGS are entirely clear, a small power vessel or any sailing vessel "shall not impede the safe passage of a power-driven vessel following a traffic lane." notice that NO mention is made of the " not to be impeded vessel"

Where the COLREGS to apportion some " rights " it would have restated RULE 10, to say " a power vessel may proceeded unimpeded by a small power vessel or sailing vessel " etc etc . That would convey a degree of right.

As has been said, all that the COLREGS imply is that an obligation has been placed upon a certain vessel to act in a certain way. No vessel is released from other obligations as a result of this rule either. ( so they dont even gain " rights" by omission )


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Old 12-03-2015, 06:15   #250
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Re: All things COLREGS

The Spanish and Colregs rule 10.

I was in the cockpit, autopilot on and no traffic around for at least 13 miles.
I was summoned by a Spanish girlfriend below for a cup of coffee. I postponed going forward as a blip appeared on my screen.

2 minutes later, I was summoned again. I managed to mutter a distracted ok and continued with my observations.

Shortly, I heard footsteps coming in my direction so to avoid a confrontation, I ran forward. She was in the wrong traffic lane. I immediately did a right angle turn and avoided a collision. Only slight spillage occurred.

She handed me the coffee with a (I presume) delightful description of my lineage and stormed off.

Now I am still wrong for taking a lane cross in an emergency situation?

She thinks I am.

Yours confusedly......
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Old 12-03-2015, 06:17   #251
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Re: All things COLREGS

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At that point - the "not to be impeded" vessel becomes burdened with the obligation to maintain course and speed, thereby allowing the give way vessel to perform a maneuver that avoids the collision.
Sorry Carsten, where do you get this comment from. there is no automatic assumption that the impeded vessel becomes the stand on vessel.
( see Rule description)

Rule 15 continues to be applied, as Section II rules apply. In that regard whether the impeded vessel is impeded or not, when a risk of collision exists Rule 15 applies, hence the impeded vessel could therefor become a stand on or Give way vessel in that regard
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Old 12-03-2015, 06:21   #252
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Re: All things COLREGS

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Originally Posted by TeddyDiver View Post
Another point of view:
Stand-on vessel must mantain it's course and speed, so it's burdened ie has no rights to change anything.
Give-way vessel can choose almost any reasonble manouver they like to, just to get of the way of the "non manouvering" stand-on vessel, so it's got the "right of way" to turn, stop, dive or fly, whatever they are capable of doing.

BR Teddy
actually no, the colregs remind you that you should not turn to port in certain circumstances.
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Old 12-03-2015, 07:08   #253
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Re: All things COLREGS

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
I misspoke - I meant before Section II rules (vessels in sight of one another) come into effect. Section I (any visibility) is also part of S&S rules; sorry for this error.

Rule 18 comes into effect only when vessels are in sight of one another and risk of collision exists. Rules 9 and 10 are always in effect. So "not impeding" under Rules 9 and 10 needs to happen before risk of collision arises (and/or before vessels are in sight of one another). The not-to-be impeded vessel does NOT stand on - he has no burdens so far. That's why Lodesman thinks it's something like a right of way.
Dockhead - I can only agree that "not impeding" occurs before the risk of collision occurs. But since it is before, and therefore before the steering rules come into effect, the "not impeded" boat is simply sailing along in the channel.

Does he have a "right of way"? I suppose one could be inferred - but "right of way" only comes into question when faced with other traffic. So if I spot a tanker sailing along in a channel and I determine that there is no risk of collision, neither of us do anything. We simply continue on our way.

If I determine that is a potential for collision - then the rules come into play and we now have a different situation - one that is described by the rules and calls for each part to perform certain actions. Inother words, both parts are now under an obligation to act according to the rules. The "right of way", which was never there in the first place, is no longer relevant.
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Old 12-03-2015, 07:12   #254
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Re: All things COLREGS

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Sorry Carsten, where do you get this comment from. there is no automatic assumption that the impeded vessel becomes the stand on vessel.
( see Rule description)

Rule 15 continues to be applied, as Section II rules apply. In that regard whether the impeded vessel is impeded or not, when a risk of collision exists Rule 15 applies, hence the impeded vessel could therefor become a stand on or Give way vessel in that regard
Dave - you are right and I stand corrected. In some situations the "not impeded" vessel could indeed become the give way vessel.

My point was that even though a vessel is sailing along under the "not to be impeded" rule - it also becomes burdened with certain obligations once a situation arises where the rules take effect. And once those obligations (stand on or give way) are placed on the boat - it is no longer a "not to be impeded".
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Old 12-03-2015, 07:57   #255
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Re: All things COLREGS

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rustic Charm View Post
Goboatingnow: To return to my car analogy. I drive down a busy two lane highway , with a minor road crossing it. I of course , monitor the crossing and it's traffic , just like a ship is obligated to do exactly the same

The difference is I have a right of way , the obligation rests 100% with the driver on the minor road to perform a safe crossing , I can simply assume that he will stop at the stop signs and only proceed when the way is clear. That is not to say I do not maintain a " lookout "

That is a right of way

At sea this does not apply. Both vessels in a crossing maintain obligations to avoid collisions. The nearest analogy with road users , might be the four way stop .

I see no interpretation on this thread that changes the view of many that rights are not conferred by the COLREGS in any circumstances



The problem with this understanding is that it is in no way accurate. It is a common understanding of the road traffic rules I give you that, but it is entirely wrong. Like Dockhead you are using this mistaken understanding of the Road Traffic Rules to argue against the use of the words in a marine situation. Your claim that an obligation lay 100% with the driver on the minor road to perform a safe crossing and your 'assumption' that he will stop, will in nearly every case loose you your civil claim and in some places will see you charged with an offence. This is 'not' a 'right of way'. It is merely a common misunderstanding of what a 'right of way' is. If you were to try to argue this case in a court of Law you would loose. in some countries you could even go to jail if someone is seriously hurt because you 'assumed' the other person was going to do the correct thing (Ethiopia and even little old Tasmania).


People who have done advanced driving lessons will often cover this in detail and the 'right of way' is always a major part of it. And far from what Dockhead thinks of myself having understood the COLREGS from the shadow of the Road Traffic Rules, having completed during my police days advanced defensive driving lessons, which are all entirely defensive, this deeper understanding has helped me understand some aspects of the COLREGS far better. Especially the 'stand on' rule.

(I am not pretending to know a lot of other aspects of the COLREGS and certainly not as much as yourself, but as to the meaning of stand on then yes)





CarstenB: Despite my longstanding respect for Lodesman and his comprehensive knowledge of the COLREGS (Lodesman - you are much, much more knowledgeable than I), I have to agree with Dave.

As dockhead pointed out, there are several phases in a sailing situation.
1- determining if there is a potential collision situation
2- early avoidance of such situation
3- action must be taken to avoid a collision. (sailing and steering rules)

I would argue that despite the terms "burdened" and privileged" (now defunct), both boats actually become "burdened" with an obligation.

The give way vessel is burdened with the responsibility to "give way" and thereby avoid the collision.

The stand on vessel is also burdened with responsibility - the responsibilty to maintain course and speed.

My further argument is that whenever you are "burdened" with any responsibility, then your "rights" are infringed (to some greater or lesser degree).

So the so-called "right of way" even in Lodesman's definition (which I believe is so abstract as to not have an application in the real world), ceases to be a "right", since a right is something you can choose to utilize or not.

Once obligated by the rules to maintain course and speed -the stand on vessel no longer has a choice in the matter (until a collision is imminent where all bets are off). In other words - his "right" has been infringed upon.






In suggesting that whenever you are 'burdened' with any responsibility, then your 'rights' are infringed is also using the same erroneous understanding of what a 'right' is. Far from Lodesman's definition as being 'too abstract as to not have an application in the real world' I suspect it's more a case that you did not understand what he was suggesting. Perhaps being coloured by the same erroneous understanding of the road rules as Goboatingnow and of Dockhead.


The bottom line to me seems to be a common but erroneous understanding of the Road Traffic Rules, which has it's foundations in an exceptionally common misunderstanding of the term in the English language called 'right' 'rights'. As there appears to be absolutely no debate about the word in the phrase 'way', I'll continue to assume it's acceptable to understand 'way' as the path/course one is travelling and so I won't go any further into that.


The Modern English language is heavily influenced by it's Christian theology which has it's foundations in Coin Greek and later Latin languages (mostly French and Germanic early origins). This is the influence of almost 2000 years of religion on the language of the common people. The term so frequently being referred here to 'right' erroneously as some form of 'absolute' comes from 'righteousness', the 'righteous path' the 'righteous way'. Far from being an absolute, it implies an encouragement to 'hold fast the righteous way', which is obviously a religious meaning as many English constructs are. If you think of it in this way, then it even makes more sense of the very new term of 'stand on', which is referring to 'stand on the correct or righteous path'. With this meaning of the term 'right', at least the foundations of the word in English, then it cannot possibly lead to obligations being either negating or 'infringing'. Not with this meaning. The only way this could be true is if you ignore the correct meaning of the word in our language and replace it with a common modern misunderstanding of an individual authority, what some of you call 'my rights'. These 'rights' are commonly legal, social or ethical 'rights' which again come from 'right' but are further teased for a specific context of usually social ethics.


If there is a beneficial reason to dispense with the term 'right of way', it's not because of it's true original meaning, but because too many commonly mistake the meaning of it. Perhaps that's why the 'right of way' terminology was not used in the COLREGS? I'm not sure. But what I am convinced of is that if people are going to understand the 'stand on' rule to be the erroneous 'opposite' meaning to 'right of way', due to an erroneous understanding of 'right of way', then the full meaning of the marine term 'stand on' is still being missed by many. Because the true meaning of the terms 'right of way', as expressed through it's English meaning, rather than it's common 20th and 21st meaning has much more of a connection to a vessel than is 'standing on' than many understand it.


To hold the 'right of way' is to 'stand fast to the righteous path'. The French I'm pretty sure call it the 'priority path'. The religious phrase includes an encouragement which is not lost in the marine term 'stand on', which is an encouragement to stand fast the right path'. The problem with calling it an obligation to stand fast is that it looses the then necessary aspect that some of you are so worried about with the term 'right of way' in that the intention is not to 'stand on' as an absolute. Then this has led to some asking the question about how long to 'stand on' for.


But this is all academic and whilst I appreciate that some sailors sail in such busy places that others of us, including myself will never need to sail, there is still even more the need to understand the rules in their most practical sense. Hence, to me, 'right of way' or perhaps the 'priority way' means more to common folk. The insistence that there is no 'right of way' on the water is both in error and complicates the very practical and common sense meaning of it. That is, as long as people truly understand the road rules when driving a car. And the answer to reducing the dismal Road Traffic deaths across the globe is better education in the road rules. Not the continued spreading or accepting of erroneous road traffic beliefs.

My view. I won't labour on. Peace to all.


Thanks for caring to get into the various acceptance of right.
Brilliant logic which appeals a lot to me....possibly because I am likewise structured mentally ( understand, trying to figurw out what obscure logic led to this or that).


I believe the French refer to "règles de priorité, rules of priority.
Funny you refer to Dover strait :-)))
UK maps read : English Channel.
and French : Détroit du Pas de Calais.
Whatever name just a bl**dy marine highway.
Fair winds to you, thanks for your imput.
Claude.
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