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Old 17-01-2011, 10:20   #46
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Originally Posted by Lodesman View Post
So there's nothing in the regs that would prevent a non-commercial vessel from using the described line, kite and sea-anchor. If this set-up restricts the vessel's manoeuvrability, then it would be well within its rights to show shapes/lights for a fishing vessel.

I've never seen the described set-up, but it sure appears that there is a vast difference from straight trolling - where even running several lines would not prevent a vessel from stopping, or running engines astern (as long as it doesn't pick up sternway); or turning, although a tight circle that would cause the vessel to run over its own lines might best be avoided.
Oxford gives this def. of troll:
1 [intransitive] troll (for something) (especially North American English) to catch fish by pulling a line with bait on it through the water behind a boat

Unfortunately, no where in the regs does it give a definition of trolling. Should there be a collision I'm sure the lawyers will split these kind of hairs but I'm not sure it's very easily answered. I've never fished with a kite myself either so don't really know what's involved. I guess if you aren't pulling it then it isn't trolling.

C.R.C.3(
d) The term “vessel engaged in fishing” means any vessel fishing
with nets, lines, trawls or other fishing apparatus which restrict
manoeuvrability, but does not include a vessel fishing with

trolling lines or other fishing apparatus which do not restrict manoeuvrability.
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Old 17-01-2011, 10:34   #47
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Originally Posted by Ram View Post
These 2 vessels fishing are not considered to have the right away , because they are fishing with a few poles that don’t cut it- they do have the right away because they are being over taken by the sail boat
With sea anchors in the water they are restricted in their ability to maneuver, but are probably not showing the proper day shape or night lights.

They are indeed trolling and not trawling, which means under the rules they have no rights as a fishing vessel. Being commercial or not is irrelevant under the rules.

All they would need to do is put up the correct day shapes or lights for being a RAM vessel and they would most certainly be covered as under the rules as a RAM vessel.

As I said earlier, all they are under the rules are power driven vessels underway, not making way.
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Old 17-01-2011, 13:04   #48
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Originally Posted by David M View Post
With sea anchors in the water they are restricted in their ability to maneuver, but are probably not showing the proper day shape or night lights.

They are indeed trolling and not trawling, which means under the rules they have no rights as a fishing vessel.
How do you figure laying to a sea anchor makes you RAM?

There are other types of fishing vessels than just trawlers, you know? And if they're not trolling a line through the water, are they trolling?
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Old 17-01-2011, 13:14   #49
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Old 17-01-2011, 15:07   #50
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Originally Posted by Lodesman View Post
How do you figure laying to a sea anchor makes you RAM?

There are other types of fishing vessels than just trawlers, you know? And if they're not trolling a line through the water, are they trolling?
Apparently you have never laid to a sea anchor or you would not have asked the question. Maneuvering with a sea anchor in the water is virtually impossible and retrieving one so that one can maneuver is often more difficult than retrieving a conventional anchor. It may well take more time than one has before a collision to retrieve it. This is pretty much the definition of RAM.

If the vessels in question in the original post were in fact laying to a sea anchor I would certainly expect them to fly shapes or flags indicating their lack of manuevering ability whether it be a day shape or an Alpha flag. While drift chutes used in fishing usually aren't as big as a traditional sea anchor, they can still take a major effort to retrieve and certainly would hinder the vessels maneuvering capability. The chute might make it impossible to control the direction of any movement and running forward over the line might well endanger the vessel by fouling the props or rudders.

From a Sailors point of view, I would hope that a power boat would not run me down from the starboard forequarter if I was laying to a sea anchor and had no sails up, thus not meeting the definition of a sailboat. I can't quite imagine how one would get out of the way of a 20 knot megayacht while dangling on the end of an 18 foot sea anchor that takes 2 hours to retrieve.

Another RAM situation is vessels tending dive operations. In some cases in the tropics vessels follow divers on "drift dives" by following their bubbles. Typically these boats are flying an Alpha flag. Forcing one of these boats off of the divers could easily cause them to loose contact with the divers and result in a diver lost at sea. The alpha flag does not actually mean divers in the water, but that the vessel is a RAM vessel. Clearly one does not need to be fishing to be considered a RAM vessel.
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Old 17-01-2011, 16:41   #51
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Apparently you have never laid to a sea anchor or you would not have asked the question. Maneuvering with a sea anchor in the water is virtually impossible and retrieving one so that one can maneuver is often more difficult than retrieving a conventional anchor. It may well take more time than one has before a collision to retrieve it. This is pretty much the definition of RAM.
That's the problem - it's pretty much NOT the definition of RAM. RAM means that by the nature of the vessel's work, it is unable to manoeuvre in accordance to the rules. Anchoring is not work. This has been discussed here before and I don't believe anyone has the definitive answer to what shapes/lights are appropriate for sea anchoring. If what you're using for fishing restricts your manoeuvrability, then I submit you should show fishing lights/shapes.

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If the vessels in question in the original post were in fact laying to a sea anchor I would certainly expect them to fly shapes or flags indicating their lack of manuevering ability whether it be a day shape or an Alpha flag.
... The alpha flag does not actually mean divers in the water, but that the vessel is a RAM vessel. Clearly one does not need to be fishing to be considered a RAM vessel.
Actually the alpha flag does mean diving operations - it's to be used by vessels that are too small to show the appropriate RAM shapes/lights, when diving; alpha is not used for any other RAM situation. A fishing vessel is not a RAM vessel - a fishing vessel is restricted in its ability to manoeuvre by its gear, but it is not considered RAM, and must give way to RAM vessels according to Rule 18.
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Old 17-01-2011, 17:08   #52
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Originally Posted by Lodesman View Post

Actually the alpha flag does mean diving operations - it's to be used by vessels that are too small to show the appropriate RAM shapes/lights, when diving; alpha is not used for any other RAM situation. A fishing vessel is not a RAM vessel - a fishing vessel is restricted in its ability to manoeuvre by its gear, but it is not considered RAM, and must give way to RAM vessels according to Rule 18.
There was a long and drawn out thread on a scuba forum I sometimes frequent discussing this very subject, so one of the enterprising participants put the question to the coast guard who had to refer it to a subject matter expert. The ruling was that an alpha flag did not have to be displayed by a boat tending scuba divers but was required on a boat tending surface supplied divers because the attached divers restricted the vessels ability to maneuver and the alpha flag indicated such and as you said on vessels too small to be able to display proper day shapes. If they were displaying the proper restricted maneuvering day shapes, an Alpha flag was not required even for surface supplied divers. States of course may have different rules for their waters requiring the Alpha flag, the divers down flag or both.

Perhaps we should be as enterprising as the scuba forum participant and put the question of what the proper signals are for laying to a sea anchor would be to the USCG or for those not in the US, their national equivalants. I myself will treat anyone who tells me on the radio that they have a sea anchor or drift chute in the water as a vessel at anchor, even if it is just to be courteous.
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Old 17-01-2011, 18:05   #53
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No, not a fishing vessel. Vessel under way, not making way, not powered absolutely has rights over a sailboat. He is not ever a fishing vessel and does not show shapes as such. To display a fishing shape would be aviolation of the rules. Fishing requires hauling or tending nets, trawls or traps. The regs do not recognize trolling or any other type of sport fishing as "fishing", thus, the confusion. The guy could throw his rods overboard and it would change nothing. He is either a motor powered vessel or unpowered flotsam you must avoid. He is not required to fire up engines to get out of your way. You can bet he will move fast if a container ship is pointed at him - Tonnage. The instant he turns on engines he becomes a motor powered vessel and that is all.

Note that RAM (restricted ability to maneuver) by regulations can only happen where that designation has meaning such as a shallow or narrow channel. It can also pertain to vessels tending navigation marks and dredging or towing. A vessel engaged in fishing at sea has rights because he is engaged in fishing in accordance with regulations and must show shapes. A fishing vessel is not RAM. A vessel may only be one class at any time. You cannot be RAM and fishing. Any vessel which might qualify as RAM in the harbors and navigation channels will only be a motor powered vessel at sea. However, only an idiot would challenge his mass. You are required to make arrangements with the other vessel in a crossing situation at the 1/2 mile point by radio or signal if the vessel in in visual sight. It is required that the master of the vessel to take all action necessary top avoid collision even if it means violating the rules.

If the guy is unpowered, no matter what he is doing, you must avoid. If he is trolling, why not be polite and show a bit of kindness? I'd rather have friends on the water than a guy who remembers me with rancor when I need help.
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Old 17-01-2011, 18:37   #54
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Originally Posted by Nicholson58 View Post
Note that RAM (restricted ability to maneuver) by regulations can only happen where that designation has meaning such as a shallow or narrow channel. It can also pertain to vessels tending navigation marks and dredging or towing.
In reading rule 3 I don't see anything in 3g which pertains to shallow or narrow channels with respect to "vessel restricted in her ability to maneuver". The only reference I have found is under vessels constrained by their draft. If I have missed something could you provide me a reference.

The key words in 3g are probably "Not Limited To". I would suspect that any underwater equipment which severely compromises one's ability to maneuver such as drift chutes which are difficult to retrieve would qualify. If these are paid charter boats, one might argue that the chutes are part of the crews working equipment, even though under the vessels engaged in fishing rules they might not qualify.

In 3f, I suspect that a vessel laying to a sea anchor probably qualifies as a vessel not under command, since sea anchors are usually deployed in exceptional circumstances.


Rule 3 (In part)
(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;
(g) The term "vessel restricted in her ability to maneuver" means a vessel which from the nature of her work is restricted in her ability to maneuver as required by these Rules and is therefore unable to keep out of the way of another vessel; vessels restricted in their ability to maneuver include, but are not limited to:
(i) a vessel engaged in laying, servicing or picking up a navigation mark, submarine cable or pipeline;
(ii) a vessel engaged in dredging, surveying or underwater operations;
(iii) a vessel engaged in replenishment or transferring persons, provisions or cargo while underway;
(iv) a vessel engaged in the launching or recovery of aircraft;
(v) a vessel engaged in mineclearance operations;
(vi) a vessel engaged in a towing operation such as severely restricts the towing vessel and her tow in their ability to deviate from their course.
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Old 17-01-2011, 20:11   #55
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G'Day all,

An interesting discussion for sure. An observation i've made here in the South Pacific is that a great many vessels which expect to have special privileges (fishing, diving, etc) display the signals required by these activities 24/7/365, no matter what activity they are currently engaged in. Specifically, trawlers which display their trawling lights whilst travelling from their berths to their trawling grounds, dive boats which have permanently displayed Alpha flags, fishing boats with baskets forever in their rigging and so on. This practice tends to dilute the significance of the signals in the eyes of their fellow mariners. One feels obligated to honour the signals even when it is obvious that they are incorrectly displayed and it is a bit annoying.

Oh, and other frequent villains are yachts motoring briskly along with their masthead tri-color nav lights gleaming. Shame on us...

I have never yet encountered folks "kite fishing", and before reading this thread would not have known what they were. Without worrying about who has the ROW, I'll just keep clear, just as I do with other fishing craft. Not a biggie to me.

I too await authoritative info on the rights of a vessel lying to a sea anchor.

Cheers,

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Old 17-01-2011, 20:17   #56
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Old 17-01-2011, 21:20   #57
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Vessel under way, not making way, not powered absolutely has rights over a sailboat.
In what rule book did you find that???

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He is not ever a fishing vessel and does not show shapes as such. To display a fishing shape would be aviolation of the rules. Fishing requires hauling or tending nets, trawls or traps. The regs do not recognize trolling or any other type of sport fishing as "fishing",
A violation of what rules? This is obviously not trolling, and again I'd like to see the rule book that defines fishing as excluding "sport fishing."

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He is not required to fire up engines to get out of your way.
OK what rules gives him that right?

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The instant he turns on engines he becomes a motor powered vessel and that is all.
I don't believe "drifting vessel" is mentioned in rule 18.

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Note that RAM (restricted ability to maneuver) by regulations can only happen where that designation has meaning such as a shallow or narrow channel.
RAM designation is completely different from the privileges afforded by the narrow channel rule (9), vessel traffic scheme(10) or constrained by draught designation.

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You are required to make arrangements with the other vessel in a crossing situation at the 1/2 mile point by radio or signal if the vessel in in visual sight.
Must be the same rule book What rule is that btw?

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If he is trolling, why not be polite and show a bit of kindness? I'd rather have friends on the water than a guy who remembers me with rancor when I need help.
This I agree with 100%
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Old 17-01-2011, 21:56   #58
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this is the wildest thread ever .... well not really but ; karma goes along way. if your cruising along turn the damn wheel. not that big of a deal. I do appreciate everyones knowledge of regulations but it really isn't worth arguing about. Life is just to damn short
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Old 18-01-2011, 17:30   #59
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Chadlaroche,
You sure have that right. I heartily emphasize the 'nice' part. It goes a long way. BTW, I've kite fished. Its a dynamite way to attract palegic hunters. Sometimes, add an ordinary balloon above the live bait. The kite keeps the line unseen by the predator and the combination of the balloon and kite keep the bait thrashing on the surface. You also get to see the strike. Don't forget - catch and release unless its MahiMahi.
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