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Old 08-03-2015, 18:29   #136
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

So as I watch the video, it appears that according to the COLREGS the sailboat is the "stand on vessel" by virtue of being a sailboat under sail and by being to the right of the ferry which is the give-way vessel. Right?
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Old 08-03-2015, 18:37   #137
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

Rong....
On Sydney Harbour special local regs exist... the ferry is 'required to keep her course and speed' while the yacht is the 'give way vessel' and is required to'keep out of the way of' the ferry. Unless of course the yacht doesn't in which case the ferry must do its best....
Please try and keep up.
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Old 08-03-2015, 19:14   #138
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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Originally Posted by El Pinguino View Post
Rong....
On Sydney Harbour special local regs exist... the ferry is 'required to keep her course and speed' while the yacht is the 'give way vessel' and is required to'keep out of the way of' the ferry. Unless of course the yacht doesn't in which case the ferry must do its best....
Please try and keep up.
So the little "wink" at the end doesn't show up on your computer? (wink!)

Please try to understand context.
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Old 08-03-2015, 19:24   #139
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

Ah...yes so it does.... but as they say ' a nod is as good as a wink to a blind man'
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Old 09-03-2015, 05:11   #140
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
So as I watch the video, it appears that according to the COLREGS the sailboat is the "stand on vessel" by virtue of being a sailboat under sail and by being to the right of the ferry which is the give-way vessel. Right?
In most cases you would be correct. However, in the case of Sydney Harbour, the Ferries displaying an orange diamond are higher up the food chain, thus making the sailboat the Burdened Vessel.
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Old 09-03-2015, 05:57   #141
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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Originally Posted by med View Post
Clearly you have never had a flogging genoa in 40 knots of wind. If you had, you would understand the huge amount of force that creates.
Clearly, though regrettably, I have, and more times than I wish. A flogging genoa in strong winds will shake the boat around a bit but it doesn't exert enough force to prevent turning up if the mainsail is up and even remotely close to properly trimmed. In this case, there may have been something that prevented him from sheeting in his main (rigged preventer?) but the flogging genoa had little or nothing to do with his inability to round up or tack.
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Old 09-03-2015, 07:11   #142
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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Originally Posted by ozskipper View Post
In most cases you would be correct. However, in the case of Sydney Harbour, the Ferries displaying an orange diamond are higher up the food chain, thus making the sailboat the Burdened Vessel.
Again, the wink.

My post was an attempt to get a rise out of the guy who has made it a personal endeavor to teach me that the COLREGS are more important than common sense. That "common sense" being that if you are in a little bitty boat, it's unwise to challenge a big ship for the same piece of water.

BTW: Is this orange cone thing in the COLREGS or is it unique to Sydney Harbour?
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Old 09-03-2015, 07:46   #143
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

I think the question of right of way is a moot point in this case. Clearly, a big ferry boat with cumbersome handling characteristics can't always prevent a much more maneuverable sailboat or small motorboat from t-boning it, no matter which vessel supposedly happens to be the stand-on or burdened one. Does anyone think that there's anything the ferry helmsman could have done to prevent this collision from happening? Somehow, the sailboat skipper lost control of his vessel, and that loss of control was 100% to blame for the ensuing collision.


From the Colregs:
Rule 2 - Responsibility (a) Nothing in these Rules shall exonerate any vessel, or the owner, master, or crew thereof, from the consequences of any neglect to comply with these Rules or of the neglect of any precaution which may be required by the ordinary practice of seamen, or by the special circumstances of the case.
(b) 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.


And from rule 8F:
"(iii) A vessel, the passage of which is not to be impeded remains fully obliged to comply with Rules 4-19 when the two vessels are approaching one another so as to involve risk of collision."


In other words, ALL vessels, whether burdened or stand-on, are ALWAYS obliged to do what they can to avoid running into other boats if strictly following the "right of way" rules doesn't seem to be working. That's not just common sense, it's also the law.
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Old 09-03-2015, 10:41   #144
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

I've watched the video.
He's definitely on a beam reach.

I cannot tell whether the foresail is on a roller furling or hanked on. If it's hanked on with the halyard run to the cockpit through a clutch there's a chance it can be dropped, helm put to weather and the boat at minimum slowed, if not possibly hove to. But, given the wind strength it's doubtful the boat would turn into the wind anyway. Under those conditions doing anything with a furling type foresail is out of the question. Also, the position of the main way out to port leaves it innefectual in assisting a turn to starboard.

Wind pressure on the bow favoured a turn away from the ferry to port. The position of the mainsail favoured a turn to port. The position of the jib, whether flogging or not favoured a turn to port. Even if the sailor has lost control of the sheets, flogging wildly to the leeward, this should not preclude a turn to port. This turn need not to have been so severe that it would lead to a gybe but sufficient enough to have cleared the ferry.

Me thinks the sailor simply lost control. In sailing there's always a first time for everything. If we're lucky we survive, learn from the experience, think about what we should have done and are better prepared to handle similar events in the future. No shame in that.
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Old 09-03-2015, 15:19   #145
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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I've watched the video.
He's definitely on a beam reach.

I cannot tell whether the foresail is on a roller furling or hanked on. If it's hanked on with the halyard run to the cockpit through a clutch there's a chance it can be dropped, helm put to weather and the boat at minimum slowed, if not possibly hove to. But, given the wind strength it's doubtful the boat would turn into the wind anyway. Under those conditions doing anything with a furling type foresail is out of the question. Also, the position of the main way out to port leaves it innefectual in assisting a turn to starboard.

Wind pressure on the bow favoured a turn away from the ferry to port. The position of the mainsail favoured a turn to port. The position of the jib, whether flogging or not favoured a turn to port. Even if the sailor has lost control of the sheets, flogging wildly to the leeward, this should not preclude a turn to port. This turn need not to have been so severe that it would lead to a gybe but sufficient enough to have cleared the ferry.

Me thinks the sailor simply lost control. In sailing there's always a first time for everything. If we're lucky we survive, learn from the experience, think about what we should have done and are better prepared to handle similar events in the future. No shame in that.
Want to add that the foresail being poled out indicates he was initially going downwind on a starboard tack. After securing the helm he may have tried going forward to detach the pole. While away from the helm, absent anyone, a wind steering apparatus or autopilot steering the boat, pressure on the main may have turned the boat further to starboard, backing the foresail and putting the boat on a beam reach. Nothing to do then but get back to the helm. The pole would not have precluded dousing the sail if it were hanked on. In fact it's weight should help to pull the sail down.

Having experienced the same scenario, but in much less wind, I suspected there was only one soul aboard as confirmed in the video title.
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Old 09-03-2015, 16:55   #146
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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Originally Posted by Wrong View Post
I've watched the video.
He's definitely on a beam reach.

I cannot tell whether the foresail is on a roller furling or hanked on. If it's hanked on with the halyard run to the cockpit through a clutch there's a chance it can be dropped, helm put to weather and the boat at minimum slowed, if not possibly hove to. But, given the wind strength it's doubtful the boat would turn into the wind anyway. Under those conditions doing anything with a furling type foresail is out of the question. Also, the position of the main way out to port leaves it innefectual in assisting a turn to starboard.

Wind pressure on the bow favoured a turn away from the ferry to port. The position of the mainsail favoured a turn to port. The position of the jib, whether flogging or not favoured a turn to port. Even if the sailor has lost control of the sheets, flogging wildly to the leeward, this should not preclude a turn to port. This turn need not to have been so severe that it would lead to a gybe but sufficient enough to have cleared the ferry.

Me thinks the sailor simply lost control. In sailing there's always a first time for everything. If we're lucky we survive, learn from the experience, think about what we should have done and are better prepared to handle similar events in the future. No shame in that.
Not even close to enough time to douse the genoa no matter whether it's roller furling or hanked on, especially singlehanded in winds that strong. But since the genoa sheets are blown, it's applying very little pressure on the bow anyway, at least compared to the pressure on the main that increases when the helmsman tries to turn down. So, his only option was to turn up, and if he could have sheeted in the main, it would have helped. In very strong winds, even with the main sheet loosened, the sail will still exert a force on the back of the boat which will attempt to turn the boat to weather, but a flogging genoa exerts no such pressure on the bow.

Why do you say that wind pressure on the bow favours a turn downwind to port? The wind is blowing just as hard on the mainsail (aft of the mast) as it is on the bow. But, even though it's sheeted all the way out, due to the fact that it's on a boom that can only pivot so far to leeward, there is a sail set back there which causes there to be more pressure aft than forward where there is no sail set.

Even if both sails were set, most rigs are designed so that when they are overpowered, weather helm turns the boat up into the wind, not down away from the wind. Once you blow the jib sheets, that tendency towards weather helm is accentuated even more. This guys only chance was to turn up into the wind. I'd love to hear from him why he didn't, but suspect that he had a preventer rigged that wouldn't allow him to sheet in the main to help the rudder turn the boat, at least in the time he had available. But with a flogging foresail and a main that he certainly couldn't quickly douse on a beam reach, there's no way he had any chance of turning down any further than he did, which obviously wasn't enough.
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Old 10-03-2015, 06:55   #147
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

It would seem to me that the sailboat captain should have realized that he was in trouble way before he got close to the ferry and done something about it. He's lucky he wasn't killed.
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Old 10-03-2015, 07:27   #148
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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It would seem to me that the sailboat captain should have realized that he was in trouble way before he got close to the ferry and done something about it. He's lucky he wasn't killed.
There but for the grace of God go I.

We can't know when the gust hit, or what was going on on board. He lost control. Maybe it was physically impossible to maneuver, or maybe not. But probably he was just paralyzed with fear and froze up. Probably he just couldn't deal with the combination of the crisis on board and the approaching ferry.

I like to think that it would never happen to me -- that I have better skills, planning, etc. -- but who knows for sure?

I have never just frozen up at sea -- always figured out what to do in various crisis situations, and did it without hesitation.

But I was shot at with a machine gun once, and instead of diving for cover, I just kept walking. It was incredibly stupid, and I am lucky to be alive. I just froze up -- my brain just shut down. So I know very well how that can happen, and so I really wouldn't judge anyone for that.
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Old 10-03-2015, 07:34   #149
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
Again, the wink.

My post was an attempt to get a rise out of the guy who has made it a personal endeavor to teach me that the COLREGS are more important than common sense. That "common sense" being that if you are in a little bitty boat, it's unwise to challenge a big ship for the same piece of water.

BTW: Is this orange cone thing in the COLREGS or is it unique to Sydney Harbour?
lol no problems :-D

As far as I know its unique to Sydney and its a local law. I doubt its in colregs. But it would appear in some "notice to mariners" some where covered in dust I assume.
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Old 10-03-2015, 07:41   #150
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Re: T-boning a Ferry in Sidney

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Not even close to enough time to douse the genoa no matter whether it's roller furling or hanked on, especially singlehanded in winds that strong.
Well. In my experience the tension on the jib halyard is sufficient - regardless of whether the foresail is close hauled, poled out (whisker pole) or I'm going downwind - to pull the jib down 'most of the way'. Then of course I'm using a 100% jib 95% of the time. And the other 5% is divided between a 120% genoa or yankee. I'll agree getting a sizeable genoa down is less certain, at least without my pulling it down. The wind strength in the video is not typical of wind I've encountered in all but one occasion - off Hout Bay, South Africa when it hit 65 knots - so I can't say with any certainty in those conditions how the foresail would respond if the halyard was quickly released... The mainsail was already down to the third reef and jib stowed on deck. All I can say is I'd try.

Quote:
But since the genoa sheets are blown, it's applying very little pressure on the bow anyway,
Hold a good sized towel out into the wind and take note of the sideways force. Or, do like you did as a kid and hold tour hand outside of the car window in a horizontal position like you're imagining your hand is an airplane. Take note of the lift and sideways force. Imagine that force multiplied many times over and you'll have some idea of how much force is being exerted through the genoa. The pressure in the kind of wind we seein the video is huge. If not, why is the boat doing by my estimate 8-10 knots? Surely this not only due to wind pressure against the flogging main...[/QUOTE]

Quote:
at least compared to the pressure on the main that increases when the helmsman tries to turn down.
Agreed, except he has not turned 'down' yet. If I were in his situation I'd certainly expect the force of the wind on the main to increase as my turn progressed. But, given the alternative - collision with the ferry - I'd give it a go. You have also failed to consider how wind in the foresail is going to affect balance if it comes into play, filling from behind.

Quote:
So, his only option was to turn up, and if he could have sheeted in the main, it would have helped. In very strong winds, even with the main sheet loosened, the sail will still exert a force on the back of the boat which will attempt to turn the boat to weather, but a flogging genoa exerts no such pressure on the bow.
I'll agree to disagree. No way he was going to sheet in the main... Insofar as wind pressure on the hull is concerned, my best guess it would be pretty much evenly distributed and an important factor to consider in how fast the boat in the video is moving. But in your observations what does ANY boat tend to do when at rest? They're bow blows off in any kind of wind. And if left alone the boat will move away from you either stern to the wind or at an angle with the bow following the stern.

Quote:
Why do you say that wind pressure on the bow favours a turn downwind to port?
Because as I mention above the bow of a boat at rest always blows off in any kind of wind. Does this tendency go away when a boat is in motion? The other consideration is the affect of wind waves on the direction of travel. I know from experience waves have a tendency to push the bow of my boat away and is something I have to compensate for when adjusting the servopendulum wind steering system. So there are two forces at work favouring a turn to port, not one.

Quote:
The wind is blowing just as hard on the mainsail (aft of the mast) as it is on the bow. But, even though it's sheeted all the way out, due to the fact that it's on a boom that can only pivot so far to leeward, there is a sail set back there which causes there to be more pressure aft than forward where there is no sail set.
I'll leave you to speculate on where and how forces may be more or less significant. Given the alternative and what I believe from observation and experience I'd have attempted a turn to port..

Quote:
Even if both sails were set, most rigs are designed so that when they are overpowered, weather helm turns the boat up into the wind, not down away from the wind. Once you blow the jib sheets, that tendency towards weather helm is accentuated even more.
I disagree. Assume a beam reach in 18-20 knots of wind. Sheet your foresail in so the telltales settle into a pattern indicating you've found the sweet spot. Take note of weather helm. Then ease the sheets to a point where the foresail begins to flutter or even luff. Take note of weather helm. The effect is the opposite of what you suggest is the case.

Quote:
This guys only chance was to turn up into the wind. I'd love to hear from him why he didn't, but suspect that he had a preventer rigged that wouldn't allow him to sheet in the main to help the rudder turn the boat, at least in the time he had available. But with a flogging foresail and a main that he certainly couldn't quickly douse on a beam reach, there's no way he had any chance of turning down any further than he did, which obviously wasn't enough.
There is a good chance he was trying to accomplish two things. Scavenge both sails to slow the boat and keep the boat upright. Even he could have sheeted the foresail in - and I doubt he could in that wind - the weather helm would have made steering unmanageable. Which is another reason using weather helm as an assist in turning upwind makes the option unworkable.
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