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Old 29-01-2011, 00:27   #1
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Ships Slowing Down

When I made my solo TransPac this summer, was surprized at the speed of the ships that came up on the AIS. All the tankers were running about 10 knots, even ones that were thousands of miles from their destinations. Container ships seemed to be going a bit faster at around 15 knots or so. None were going 20 knots plus that I thought was the cruising speed of these behemoths. Just saw this article in Latitude 38 that explains why: Latitude 38 - 'Lectronic Latitude You'll have to scroll down to the middle of the post.

That should make it a bit safer for those of us out there sailing on the big oceans.
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Old 29-01-2011, 02:06   #2
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YUP.
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Old 29-01-2011, 05:32   #3
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I'm going to attach three photos. There are two reasons for this:

1 - I'm paranoid, and I truly believe the mean comments on other threads about 'some contributors never sailing' are all directed at me. The photos prove I go sailing.

2 - They illustrate a point about ruddy tankers.

Photo number 1 is the view, during a race, from our yacht. Nothing unusual - note the rest of the fleet is behind us.
Photo number 2 is of a tanker that just pulled away from port. He had turned, and then straightened up. At this stage, it looked like he was going behind our stern.
Photo number 3 is after he started turning again, then put his throttle down. At the moment this photo was taken, our engines were full on in reverse, to counteract that suction thing you get when a overtaking a lorry.
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Old 29-01-2011, 11:55   #4
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I'm not defending the tanker, but what about the boats behind you?
How long would the tanker's wait have been for everyone to clear out?
It doesn't look like you guys have much wind.
He may have figured he had a little more time to go in front of all of you than he actually did.
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Old 29-01-2011, 14:04   #5
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Not defending the ship either, but, probably cleared with harbor traffic. Restricted bt draft, restricted abiliry to manuever. And probably being under traffic control and has to maintain course and speed.
Plus depending on spwwd and weight all manuevers take a while to complete. Talked to a SUPERTANKER on day at sea and the conversation got to talking about manuevering.
EMERGENCY STOP 5-7 MILES
90 DEGREE TURN 4-5 MILES
Of course that was fully laden and at cruising speed
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Old 29-01-2011, 14:12   #6
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He could have tooted his horn ahead of time, called on 13/16/9 "YAH IN MY WAY, AND I'M A COMING!"

But again, might has rights and I never challenge those guys!
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Old 29-01-2011, 14:44   #7
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He could have tooted his horn ahead of time, called on 13/16/9 "YAH IN MY WAY, AND I'M A COMING!"

But again, might has rights and I never challenge those guys!
I agree. And as long as the big guy isn't frequently altering his course, a continuous watch and prudent handling by the small boats will hopefully keep them out of trouble. Of course, this will likely mess-up the sailboat race.
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Old 29-01-2011, 15:41   #8
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I might as well add,
"He's at work, you're not."
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Old 29-01-2011, 15:53   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saucy Sailoress View Post
I'm going to attach three photos. There are two reasons for this:

1 - I'm paranoid, and I truly believe the mean comments on other threads about 'some contributors never sailing' are all directed at me. The photos prove I go sailing.

2 - They illustrate a point about ruddy tankers.

Photo number 1 is the view, during a race, from our yacht. Nothing unusual - note the rest of the fleet is behind us.
Photo number 2 is of a tanker that just pulled away from port. He had turned, and then straightened up. At this stage, it looked like he was going behind our stern.
Photo number 3 is after he started turning again, then put his throttle down. At the moment this photo was taken, our engines were full on in reverse, to counteract that suction thing you get when a overtaking a lorry.
Not sure where this action took place, but if you had been racing in San Francisco bay your behavior would have earned you an automatic DSQ for interfering with commercial traffic. Pity the poor pilot or skipper of the tanker who simply can't maneuver to avoid you or the rest of the gnats swarming across his course. Exactly what do you think he should have done in this case?

If he should have hit you, or you him, the skipper would have faced possible loss of ticket or at least a board of inquiry... not good on your CV! If you are suggesting that the ship deliberately was aiming for you and the rest of the race fleet, well, I think you have delusions of grandeur!

Having spent a lot of years racing on SF bay, I know that commercial traffic can bugger up your planned strategy, steal your wind, roll the air out of your sails with their wakes and so on. But the bottom line is that at least there, the big guys are the stand-on vessels in all situations relative to yachts, racing or not. It's a fact of life and SOLAS, and we learned to live with it. For further comments on this subject, Latitude 38 has been trying to educate sailors in the bay for years, and has had many editorial pages devoted to the subject.

Cheers,

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Towlers Bay, NSW, Oz
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Old 30-01-2011, 02:04   #10
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Hi there...

Since this was off-topic, (and not about tankers slowing down on the High Seas) I started another thread:
Big Boats Behaving Badly

I will put my defense there....
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Old 30-01-2011, 04:30   #11
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beware the tug with barge behind

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Originally Posted by Saucy Sailoress View Post
Hi there...

Since this was off-topic, (and not about tankers slowing down on the High Seas) I started another thread:
Big Boats Behaving Badly

I will put my defense there....
-if your on the move at night it allwats wise to give those lights a wide angle cause those lights could be a tug with an unlighted barge far astern in tow and long cable in between,,this more of hazard in my opinion than large commercial vessel,,
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Old 30-01-2011, 11:14   #12
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Originally Posted by Saucy Sailoress View Post

1 - I'm paranoid, and I truly believe the mean comments on other threads about 'some contributors never sailing' are all directed at me. The photos prove I go sailing.
Maybe it is paramoia, I've never thought of you as not sailing.

I sail alot on the Mersey, dont race, I'll either have a 5 hour day sail over the HW normally heading up river on the flood, and back down on the ebb, or I'm using the river to get out to sea, and it can be busy with commercial traffic, especially as most ships are on the move at about the HW time. It is a local by-law that all pleasure craft keep clear of commercial shipping. I've not had a problem, will always check in with Mersey Radio, so at least they know the name of my boat and where I'm heading for.
There was an incident last year where the racing crowd seriously p*ssed of one of the river pilots by cutting close across the bows of an outbound chemical tanker. I guess for the yachties, there was plenty of room, but for the pilot and skipper it could have meant a change of underwear.
Complaints were made to the local yacht club, and it was arranged for the some of them to visit the traffic control centre, to get an idea of how busy it is on the river, and how little room for manoeuver the bigger ships have.
Being in a position where I get to see the situation from both ends, from either my boat or my work boat, I keep well clear of all commercial traffic on the Mersey, or any other water way where this is a local rule.
The biggest offender on that river is the Mersey ferry, I'm convinced that the alter course to put themselves on collision courses with sail boats.
Last week, sailing back up the river I heard the ferry give 1 blast on the whistle, I altered to stbd to increase the passing distance, and they altered to port, go figure.
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Old 30-01-2011, 11:21   #13
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I sail alot on the Mersey, dont race, I'll either have a 5 hour day sail over the HW normally heading up river on the flood, and back down on the ebb, or I'm using the river to get out to sea...
That's it - next time I'm back home (in Liverpool), you're taking me up the Mersey on your sailboat!! YIPPEE!!!
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Old 30-01-2011, 11:25   #14
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That's it - next time I'm back home (in Liverpool), you're taking me up the Mersey on your sailboat!! YIPPEE!!!
Hang on for the next 2 months, I'm off to Freeport, Bahamas next week. Back to work, but at least its better than the North Sea or the Baltic
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