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Old 12-12-2010, 08:41   #31
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Originally Posted by smj View Post
In Florida if you less than 7m long and unable to go over 7 knots an all around white light IS legal. My question is if I'm on my inflatable and I have a 15hp motor obviously able to do over 7kts., but I'm in a slow speed no wake zone then legally I can't do over 7kts. will I still get a ticket?
Please post the citation. Generally, Federal preempts local.

The Florida site references the Federal...

"Recreational vessels are required to display navigation lights between sunset and sunrise and during periods of reduced visibility (fog, rain, haze, etc.). The U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Rules specify lighting requirements for every description of watercraft. The information provided in the following link is for vessels less than 65.5 feet/20 meters in length: http://boat-ed.com/fl/course/p4-9_navlights.htm. "
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Old 12-12-2010, 08:43   #32
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flip the LED component over and the shaft glows white, plus it's a whistle, another CG required piece of equipment.

even though I paddle my 9' landing craft I run two white lights, one on the stern and one on my body
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Old 12-12-2010, 08:49   #33
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Living down in the Florida Keys years ago, I was almost run over twice by motorboats late at nite while returning in my dingy... I doubt there's a cruiser out there that hasn't experienced something similar... I can see the reasoning behind this law.
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Old 12-12-2010, 09:40   #34
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Originally Posted by Hillbillyfunk View Post
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flip the LED component over and the shaft glows white, plus it's a whistle, another CG required piece of equipment.

even though I paddle my 9' landing craft I run two white lights, one on the stern and one on my body

How do you get the glow sticks to show from dead ahead to 2 points abaft the beam? Got a ticket in Fernandina Beach a few years ago because I did not have a whistle.
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Old 12-12-2010, 09:57   #35
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Originally Posted by lorenzo b View Post
Got a ticket for not having a bow and stern white light and a red and green side light on a West Marine 350 RIB dinghy running at night.
Have you ever seen running lights on an inflatable dinghy? Anywhere?
Yeah, I see them on this USCG Rules of Road picture for the required lights of a vessel you describe:



Rule 23c - PDV Less than 12m

that sure looks like an inflatable to me.

Sorry you got caught.
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Old 12-12-2010, 10:08   #36
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Originally Posted by thinwater View Post
Please post the citation. Generally, Federal preempts local.

The Florida site references the Federal...

"Recreational vessels are required to display navigation lights between sunset and sunrise and during periods of reduced visibility (fog, rain, haze, etc.). The U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Rules specify lighting requirements for every description of watercraft. The information provided in the following link is for vessels less than 65.5 feet/20 meters in length: Florida Boating License and Boat Safety Course - Navigation Light Requirements. "
Depends on whether you are in international or inland waters. Previous poster pointed out that international allows the single all round, but that exemption isn't in the inland rules.

Whether you're in international or inland doesn't seem to have much rhyme or reason. All of Puget Sound including Lake Washington is international and San Francisco Bay is inland. You have to look at the Coast Pilot.

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Old 12-12-2010, 10:46   #37
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One of the fundamental problems boaters have in dealing with so called law enforcement is that as transients boaters have no viable recourse to the courts. If we wanted to spend the next two years hanging around the courthouse in Trailer Heaven, Florida, we wouldn't be living on a boat on our way to the Caribbean. The cops know this and laugh about it. On the other hand, they are stuck here doing a lousy job for lousy money in a lousy town.
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Old 12-12-2010, 11:11   #38
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I think we're all missing the main point here. Only use lights when you don't want someone to run you down, or get a ticket.

Don't use then when you have a death-wish and/or want to defy government and excercise your God given right to do whatever you want to do.
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Old 12-12-2010, 11:25   #39
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Don't use then when you have a death-wish
Or cruise where there are few boaters, no law enforcement, and the dinghies are equipped with (gasp) a single white flashlight
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Old 12-12-2010, 11:46   #40
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Originally Posted by Christian Van H View Post
Living down in the Florida Keys years ago, I was almost run over twice by motorboats late at nite while returning in my dingy... I doubt there's a cruiser out there that hasn't experienced something similar... I can see the reasoning behind this law.
But it's easier to run you over when I can see you.
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:07   #41
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To be perfectly honest, I feel much safer in a dinghy at night with no lights at all and
with a small 4 hp motor. I can see and hear other boats clearly without my own lights blinding me, and if a boat approaches me too fast I can close my eyes for a
few seconds and shine a flashlight on myself.
As with motoring, the real dangers are youth, alcohol, and just plain stupidity.
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:14   #42
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Lorenzo b, If you didn't have running lights, can we also assume that you didn't have flares or an SOS light? If not the water cop was generous for not giving you two tickets.
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:16   #43
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All along the US East Coast, especially places with relatively high boating populations, the local water police are pretty strict on enforcing lights, PFD, sound-making devices, etc. It is not restricted to Florida by any stretch of the imagination.

This is only partly in response to the number of accidents and deaths that you hear about on an all too often basis that might have been prevented had the vessels been properly equipped. The costs to conduct SAR are high and in the US are paid for by taxpayers. Ben Franklin's "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" comes to mind here.

Having said that, I have been constantly disappointed in the lighting products sold for our inflatables. Aqua Signal and their "competitors" seem to use the same design which is just not waterproof. We currently have none because every set we buy end up filled with water with battery terminals corroded. We do carry LED flashlights and a headlamp that has a red lens. Fortunately, we are not in the US where we would not be legal.
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:21   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lorenzo b View Post
To be perfectly honest, I feel much safer in a dinghy at night with no lights at all and
with a small 4 hp motor. I can see and hear other boats clearly without my own lights blinding me, and if a boat approaches me too fast I can close my eyes for a
few seconds and shine a flashlight on myself.
As with motoring, the real dangers are youth, alcohol, and just plain stupidity.
Running lights shouldn't blind you. If they do they're not set up well.

John
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:34   #45
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I think we're all missing the main point here. Only use lights when you don't want someone to run you down, or get a ticket.
I was thinking about this last night. We'd anchored out to watch the lighted boat parade here in Sausalito--and the fireworks, of course--and there was a small 20'ish sailboat powering up and down the channel without lights. No sails up, just a little 2hp outboard working full steam.

Madness. There must have been 40 boats in the parade, including a bunch of really big powerboats, and the tiniest boat out there was the only one that couldn't be seen. It was also the boat moving fastest through the water.

This dark little sailboat powered right past the CG patrol boat despite the fact that its blue lights were flashing the entire time. A cheer went up when the Coasties finally pulled this guy over, and many of the boats anchored at the edge of the channel joined the ovation with a few blasts on the whistle.

If the epitome of ignorance isn't boating at night without lights, then it's got to be crossing in front of an on-duty patrol boat while doing so.
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