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Old 17-09-2012, 22:20   #91
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
Hands up

1) who has read all of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.
2) who has read the rules / modifications that are applicable in each country in which you sail.

After you have done your homework, we have have a quiz. (We did that once on Sailnet.)
1)
2)

Sorry, couldn't find just a hand on the smilies list.
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Old 17-09-2012, 22:24   #92
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

When a ship comes into view, I make course adjustments long before it's necessary to avoid a collision or near miss. Like a few weeks ago I was going southward toward Eastern Brother Island. I saw the ship as it had passed under the San Rafael Bridge (well south of the island). Although I expected the ship to pass west of the island in the main shipping channel, it disappeared from view as it traveled on the opposite side of the two Brothers islands. So I altered course directly toward East Brother rather than in the channel to the east of the island. Lo and behold the ship appeared to east of the island. Fortunately, my course kept me well away.

Here the subject USA Army ship passed to my port (east) side.



East Brother Island looking west.

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Old 17-09-2012, 22:24   #93
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by Adelie View Post
Taxiing seaplane.
Before 2003 that was the answer. Not now.

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[(f) (i) A WIG craft shall, when taking off, landing and in flight near the surface, keep well clear of all other vessels and avoid impeding their navigation;]

[(ii) a WIG craft operating on the water surface shall comply with the Rules of this Part as a power-driven vessel.]
http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName...Content#rule18

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Old 17-09-2012, 22:27   #94
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
Before 2003 that was the answer. Not now.
Did it become WIG craft or am I completely off base?
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Old 17-09-2012, 22:31   #95
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by Adelie View Post
Did it become WIG craft or am I completely off base?
Yes. I edited my answer. A WIG is not a seaplane.
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Old 17-09-2012, 22:33   #96
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
Yes. I edited my answer. A WIG is not a seaplane.
Yeah, I know that, though it would not be obvious that I knew the difference.
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Old 17-09-2012, 22:36   #97
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by Adelie View Post
Yeah, I know that, though it would not be obvious that I knew the difference.
The 2003 amendments also defined a WIG.

Quote:
[(m) The term "Wing-In-Ground (WIG) craft" means a multimodal craft which, in its main operational mode, flies in close proximity to the surface by utilizing surface-effect action.]
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Old 17-09-2012, 23:07   #98
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
Big boats make big crunchy noises when they collide with little cruising boats.
Honestly, that's not a valid argument for maintaining ignorance of the COLREGS.

Half the "skippers" on this thread wouldn't know what to do if being overtaken by a ship that gives two short blasts on the whistle. But they'll all swear by the "common sense" rule to get the hell out of the way. But if they turn the wrong way to cross out of the channel, guess what happens next.

Learn the rules,
follow the rules,
ditch the paranoia about crunchy noises.

Navigation by paranoia is not the smart option here.

Learn the rules.
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Old 17-09-2012, 23:13   #99
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by Bash View Post
Honestly, that's not a valid argument for maintaining ignorance of the COLREGS.

Half the "skippers" on this thread wouldn't know what to do if being overtaken by a ship that gives two short blasts on the whistle. But they'll all swear by the "common sense" rule to get the hell out of the way. But if they turn the wrong way to cross out of the channel, guess what happens next.

Learn the rules,
follow the rules,
ditch the paranoia about crunchy noises.

Navigation by paranoia is not the smart option here.

Learn the rules.
YES.

It is absolutely clear to me that many of the posters have not read the IRPCS and fewer still understand the national modifications.
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Old 17-09-2012, 23:17   #100
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

I must say that we have encountered a number of ships out at sea and it is a humbling experience to watch them alter course to avoid us. We carry Ais Transmit and receive which in my opinion is better than radar for the purpose of avoiding ships at sea and we actually watch them as they alter course. Sometimes it feels a bit embarrassing to have such a large vessel maneuver around us, but they are incredibly fast, sneak up really quickly and so thankfully they take the effort!
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Old 17-09-2012, 23:59   #101
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David M

In busy harbors the Port Captain can and usually does declare that vessels of a certain size or larger are stand on vessels. This applies to SF Bay where the Coast Guard can and will issue citations to smaller craft that interfere with ships. Therefore in certain situation it is not just the COLREG's that is the law. The COLREG's provide for local authorities to make their own laws.
I am not arguing, I am just asking and looking to be educated. Is this statement above about the port captain true or is the coast guard just following:

-Rule 10 - Traffic Separation Schemes | Vessel Traffic Services
(j) A vessel of less than 20 meters in length or a sailing vessel shall not impede the safe passage of a power-driven vessel following a traffic lane.


And perhaps it seemed the port captain was declaring by certain size when really it was just the case where vessels participating in VTS would be any vessel greater than 20 meters.


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Old 18-09-2012, 00:22   #102
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

The best post I've read so far is #11 by Dockhead.....

The ColRegs and Seamanship are linked hand in hand, they are married! The ColRegs are useless without the application of Seamanship and Seamanship can't exist without a very good working knowledge of the ColRegs. The problem is that at least 50% of people out on the water don't have a clue - not just newbies; there are plenty of people who say "Ah, I've been boating for 30 years" who haven't had a clue for those 30 years and have been very lucky.....

Yes, the ColRegs also make provision for local regulations. Good Seamanship means that when you go to a new area or country, you find out what those 'local' regulations are. But this is an international forum so what we all have in common is the ColRegs.....

There is also no such thing as 'common sense' because everyone's idea of common sense is different (the opposite of common). That's why the ColRegs were created....

The sailboat v large ship scenario should not be an issue at all - it is covered under the ColRegs and it is covered under Seamanship. Any vessel that has priority due to special circumstance (constrained by draught, restricted in manoeuvrability, NUC, vessels engaged in fishing, etc) must display day shapes or lights to communicate this to other vessels. Problem is that the average 'Joe Blow' doesn't know what those signals mean.....
Out on the open water and out of shipping separation lanes, all power vessels are the same and should adhere to the 5 basic rules BUT this is where Seamanship comes in to it..... and Seamanship has a lot courtesy and consideration for other vessels built in to it.

So, a small power vessel or sailing vessel is on a crossing course with a ship; Seamanship immediately says 1/ the ship probably hasn't seen you 2/ it is much harder and takes a lot longer for the ship to alter course than it does for my vessel 3/ when you are still 5NM away from the ship, a very minor course correction will see you safely pass astern of the ship and is no big deal; the earlier you make the decision, the smaller the course change. The ColRegs haven't even come into it in this scenario and neither did they need to. Just good Seamanship.
In harbour and in close quarters however, the ship will probably have day shapes for either 'Restricted in Manoeuvrability' OR 'Constrained by Draught'. The ColRegs clearly dictate that we do not impede this vessel. Seamanship dictates that we understand that the bridge on most ships is aft which means that the skipper (or local harbour pilot) cannot see anything directly ahead for hundreds of metres and that because the ship is moving so slowly, any course changes take a long time..... so duh, don't try and squeeze past the bow if you're under sail!

In a nutshell, good Seamanship means that the Master of the vessel is constantly assessing everything around him/her (other vessel traffic, the sea state, wind strength, current, whether another vessel is keeping proper lookout and has seen you, etc, etc) and then taking early and decisive action to navigate the vessel safely. It ain't that hard, people!
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Old 18-09-2012, 00:48   #103
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

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Originally Posted by foggysail View Post
This is a CRUISER'S FORUM where I would expect to find comments/threads discussing boat sizes normally related to CRUISING, both power and sail not commercial tugs with tow encountering container ships!

Foggy
The point I was trying to get across is that the size of the vessel is not relevant, (except for Rules 9 and 10, and also local regulations, which normally apply in narrow channels, rivers etc. ), and there is no mention of commercial or pleasure craft in the Colregs.
I could have said a 30 foot sail boat meeting a 60 foot power boat.
You can have the case of a large box ship meeting a short handed sail boat running down wind under spinnaker and prevented mainsail, which is the less manouverable? Or, how about the transocean single handed sail boats, my take is that they are relying on the freighter to do the right thing.
By all means, take action to avoid a close quarters situation, but do so before the colregs come into play.
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Old 18-09-2012, 01:13   #104
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Re: Freighters vs. sailboats

If anyone here doesn't understand Dockhead or surfer girl post - it is time for you to (re)read the Colregs. Matter of fact - most of the posters here need to (re)read the regs.

It ain't hard - but unless you have an intimate knowledge of the regs - you shouldn't be out there
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Old 18-09-2012, 03:04   #105
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Re: ROW vs. Stand On

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Originally Posted by Tony B View Post
Nothing personal, just playing here.
I have seen written many times on various forums that there is a difference between Right of Way and Stand-on/Give way. I don't see any difference. Under normal conditions the stand-on vessel is to maintain course and speed. To me,this is a right of way under another name. The Give way vessel is to yield or surrender the right of way. To me ,the words are different but mean the same. It's just a matter of samantics. The rules are the same in avoidance of a collision between the two regardless of what you call it.
Once you determine that a collision is inevitable, then you both must take evasive action, which has no longer anything to do with stand-on/ROW. If you both followed the rules, then the possibility of a collision should never have existed because one guy would have yielded to the other long before that. Who yields? Normally it should be the Give Way vessel because he does not have the ROW.
Sorry, there is a very important difference between having the right of way and being a stand-on vessel. Understanding the difference is crucial to understanding how to behave in traffic at sea.

When you have the right of way, it means that you can drive with impunity, and the responsibility is 100% on other vehicles without the right of way to avoid you. So if you are rolling down the highway you are not required to keep an eye on every car standing at a stop sign waiting to drive into the highway. Of course the principle of defensive driving means you should always have one eye open in case someone pulls out in front of you, in case you might somehow swerve and avoid him, but in reality if you are making 100 km/h down the highway there is almost nothing you can do -- it is really up to the other guy not to pull out in front of you. That is right of way.

Being the stand-on vessel is really very different. You don't have any "right of way" at sea -- that means, you have no right to just proceed with impunity and just expect give-way vessels to be 100% responsible for getting out of your way, as they would if they were cars and on land. That is because the Colregs are different from traffic rules on land -- both helmsmen are always responsible for avoiding a collision. Being the stand-on vessel means you are supposed to hold your course and speed at first to give the other helmsman a chance to work out a maneuver and make the first move. But since we are not talking about right of way, what happens next is different -- if the other helmsman does not or cannot execute a maneuver which resolves the situation, then you must maneuver yourself. And if you don't do it -- then you are also at fault.

You have no right to just start maneuvering willy-nilly if you are the stand-on vessel -- you screw up what the other helmsman is doing. By "willy-nilly", I mean however you feel like manuevering, without regard to the Colregs, in a way which the ship helmsman cannot predict. Some people are recommending this, and I am obligated to say that this is wrong, unseamanlike, and dangerous. "Just ignore the Colregs and get the hell out of the way" is poor seamanship and contrary to the rules, and the kind of behavior which this attitude engenders is why commercial seaman call us "WAFIs". That is the classical WAFI attitude. I guess a typical scenario would be like this:

"Oh, Joe, did you see that big ship right there?" "Oh f*ck! Where did he come from! Turn! Turn!" "I am turning!" "No! No! Turn the other way! The other way! Quick! No, no! Turn harder!" "Oh hell, he's turning too!" Crunch.

It occurs to me that one gap between the WAFI faction here and those arguing for the importance of the rules, is that these two groups are thinking about entirely different distances. The Colregs faction is talking about what you do 4 and 5 miles out; the WAFI faction is talking about one or two cables -- entirely different situations. Maybe it would be worthwhile to put the whole discussion into the context of our tactics in general to avoid other traffic.

Let's start with one question: Do you have a hand-bearing compass in your cockpit at all times, and do you know how to use it to determine whether you are on a dangerous intersecting course with another vessel from a safe distance away? If you don't, then you are a menace if you sail anywhere you might have to share the ocean with big ships. It means that you won't even notice you have a potential problem until it's too late to do anything seamanlike to solve it.

Avoiding ships typically starts 5 or 6 miles out. Large commercial vessels travel at different speeds, but 20 knots is not uncommon. 5 miles is 15 minutes at that speed; 2 miles is 6 minutes. The vector created by your own boat's motion may reduce this amount of time. In open water, large commercial vessels will see you 90% or more of the time (you do have a radar reflector, don't you?), and the guys on the bridge will start calculating the crossing situation about 5 or 6 miles out. They will typically use a system called ARPA, which will automatically calculate a CPA using their radar data. And they WILL maneuver if they are the give-way vessel. You will make their lives a lot easier if you will hold still and let them do their jobs. At 5 or 6 miles out, it's not any big deal for them -- it might be a course correction of just a few degrees to pass safely behind you.

Most WAFIs never even know this is happening, because they don't pay attention to ships that far away, never know they are on a dangerous intersecting course, and never know that the ship has made a subtle course correction to resolve the situation. They just bob along in blissful ignorance -- and provided they happen to be the stand-on vessel AND if they don't make any unexpected manuevers, then that's ok, I guess -- in any case, it's better than if they start turning this way and that, making it impossible for the commercial seaman to calculate a safe course.

What you should be doing, if you want to graduate to non-WAFI status, is the same thing the commercial seamen are doing -- calculating the encounter from a safe distance away, using your hand bearing compass, and figuring out who is give-way and who is stand-on, and what the appropriate maneuver should be. If you are the give-way vessel, then you should initiate a course change by 3 or 4 miles out, preferably to take you safely behind the other vessel (passing ahead is not good unless you have a much larger margin of error -- preferably more than a mile).

If you are the stand-on vessel, you should hold your course and speed as you are REQUIRED to do by the Colregs, and give the other guy a chance to make the first move. Meanwhile, you are taking bearings every two or three minutes in order to verify that the other guy actually did initiate a course change. If by say 2 miles out, you are still on an intersecting course, then you need to make your own move. It should be one decisive move, and it should be a large enough course change that it is obvious to the other helmsman what you did. Tacking onto a reciprocal course is good (as long as you are 100% certain that the other vessel has not turned towards you!!!!); just heaving to to stay out of the way might be best of all. Do NOT call on the VHF if you are already two miles or less away -- it's already too late for chatter -- you will just waste time. Make a decisive move.

All this should be done before you are much less than 2 miles away -- one mile away is already close quarters and dangerous. If you find yourself on an intersecting course with a ship at less than one mile away, then you have screwed the pooch big time. Whether you were the stand-on or the give-way vessel already doesn't matter -- you screwed up if you end up that close. It should simply never happen.

I'm afraid that our anti-Colregs faction here are thinking about encounters at two or three cables distance. And so in such cases, they are actually right -- it's already too late for seamanlike manuevers and time to save your a$$ however you can. By this distance you can forget being the stand-on vessel, because a large commercial vessel cannot stop or turn fast enough to do anything at such a distance. And if because of some idiotic sailing by some WAFI a large commercial vessel finds itself on an intersecting course with a sailboat at two or three cables away, it WILL hold its speed and course -- exactly to allow the sailboat to use its greater maneuverability to resolve the situation, since the large commercial vessel already can't do anything about it at all, and by this distance may not even be able to see the WAFI.

So maybe like this we can bridge the gap a little -- once you are a couple of cables away from a commercial ship on an intersecting course, then forget about being the stand-on vessel. You have already long since screwed the pooch, and you need to get away however you can. I think that is what some of the anti-Colregs faction were trying to say, and they are right -- to this extent.

But dealing with ship encounters properly starts far earlier than that. And requires a lot more knowledge and technique than just one rule like "Screw the Colregs! Just get the hell out of the way!".


It's a shame we don't have more commercial seamen on here. I know a few, and their complaint about us WAFIs is always the same -- that we don't know the rules, and that we manuever erratically and unpredictably. They avoid other ships and boats all the time -- it's what they do on the bridge day in and day out. If we would only follow the rules, maneuver predictably, the way we are supposed to, and hold still when we are supposed to so that they can work out their own maneuvers, we will make their lives much easier, and ours much safer.
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