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Old 12-06-2014, 02:33 PM   #41
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No where in the Navigation rule book is the term "right of way" used. You are either the "give way" vessel or the "stand on" vessel.
That's true, ancora. However, the wholesale term "right-of-way" gets the point across.

To use the two nautical terms, or one, or the other in a sentence for getting the point of right-of-way (i.e. "give way" or "stand on") across would take added words of explanation for newbies to understand.
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Old 12-06-2014, 02:58 PM   #42
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No where in the Navigation rule book is the term "right of way" used. You are either the "give way" vessel or the "stand on" vessel.
Although true, I have yet to come up with a discernible difference in the meaning of the words. Stand On: maintain course and speed. Ok, I am in the don't 'F' with category. Hmmmmmmmm, maybe I have the right of way. Give Way: the other guy has the right of way.
Collision looks probable : I take evasive action even if I am the Stand-on. Hmmmmmm. if we were in cars, I would hit my brakes even if I had the right of way or I could get in a wreck and prove that I had the right of way.
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Old 12-06-2014, 02:59 PM   #43
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Actually right of way is used in Western Rivers rules...


"d) Notwithstanding Rule 14(a), a power-driven vessel operating on the Great Lakes, Western Rivers, or waters specified by the Secretary, and proceeding downbound with a following current shall have the right-of-way over an upbound vessel, shall propose the manner of passage, and shall initiate the maneuvering signals prescribed by Rule 34(a)(i), as appropriate."

But in all yes the term is misleading....
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Old 12-06-2014, 03:10 PM   #44
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Actually right of way is used in Western Rivers rules...


"d) Notwithstanding Rule 14(a), a power-driven vessel operating on the Great Lakes, Western Rivers, or waters specified by the Secretary, and proceeding downbound with a following current shall have the right-of-way over an upbound vessel, shall propose the manner of passage, and shall initiate the maneuvering signals prescribed by Rule 34(a)(i), as appropriate."

But in all yes the term is misleading....
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Old 12-06-2014, 03:42 PM   #45
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When I took my 100 Ton Masters around 1990 or so, we didn't have the ridiculousness of Stand On and Give Way. We had a more common sense version - Privileged Vessels and Burdened Vessels. Now doesn't that sound better? NOT!
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Old 12-06-2014, 05:39 PM   #46
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Funny how this goes... So when I owned the sailboat I said the same thing about so many power boats. No regard for any of the Navigation Rules by power boats. Now that I am mostly on power I do see some of the sailboat issues mentioned above but not near as much as with the power boats. The biggest one is the complete disregard for their wake. We have a 52 footer so we make a huge wake and I always try to cut the wake to nothing when passing others, power or sail. Even saying that sometimes I miss cutting back because I did not see something.
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Old 12-07-2014, 08:21 AM   #47
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When I took my 100 Ton Masters around 1990 or so, we didn't have the ridiculousness of Stand On and Give Way. We had a more common sense version - Privileged Vessels and Burdened Vessels. Now doesn't that sound better? NOT!
My understanding is that they changed it for the same reason we try to avoid "right of way". It's just not that simple.

You are not "privileged". You are OBLIGATED to maintain course and speed if you're the stand-on vessel. This is the part of the rule that too many sail boaters don't understand. They have no "right" to cut in front of you, just because that's a convenient time to tack.

Both vessels have responsibilities to avoid a collision. The new language attempts to get that point across. I agree that it's difficult for new boaters to comprehend. It's so different from driving a car, where every single action is spelled out for you by signs, lights and lines painted in the road. On the water you need to use your brain and accept personal responsibility. Apparently a lot of folks aren't used to that.
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Old 12-07-2014, 08:30 AM   #48
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When I said "We had a more common sense version - Privileged Vessels and Burdened Vessels. Now doesn't that sound better? NOT!", it was meant as a sarcastic joke.
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Old 12-07-2014, 08:32 AM   #49
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My understanding is that they changed it for the same reason we try to avoid "right of way". It's just not that simple.

You are not "privileged". You are OBLIGATED to maintain course and speed if you're the stand-on vessel. This is the part of the rule that too many sail boaters don't understand. They have no "right" to cut in front of you, just because that's a convenient time to tack.

Both vessels have responsibilities to avoid a collision. The new language attempts to get that point across. I agree that it's difficult for new boaters to comprehend. It's so different from driving a car, where every single action is spelled out for you by signs, lights and lines painted in the road. On the water you need to use your brain and accept personal responsibility. Apparently a lot of folks aren't used to that.
This is what I was saying back in post #4........about knowing a rule but not really how to execute....

Post #4 - "Many even experienced boaters just barely know the common rules but yet don't have the working knowledge of them to apply them correctly in all situations."
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Old 12-07-2014, 11:05 AM   #50
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......Post #4 - "Many even experienced boaters just barely know the common rules but yet don't have the working knowledge of them to apply them correctly in all situations."
I agree 100%.

Coming from sailboats, after travelling 1200 miles of navigable waterways on a trawler, my mind has not only not changed but has been reinforced that most power boaters have little to no knowledge of rules of the road and could care less. How's that for a run on sentence.

I will however make this statement: Most cruisers that take extended trips, meaning out of their normal environment, are fairly knowledgeable of the ColRegs. This might have something to do with recognizing that basic survival skills (Rules of the road) may come into play.
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Old 12-07-2014, 11:38 AM   #51
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You are not "privileged". You are OBLIGATED to maintain course and speed if you're the stand-on vessel. This is the part of the rule that too many sail boaters don't understand. They have no "right" to cut in front of you, just because that's a convenient time to tack.
Well, not really. Rule 18a states that a power vessel shall give way to, among other things, a sailing vessel (under sail). There are some specific exceptions to this, but for the most part if a sailing vessel under sail tacks in front of you, even if you are the stand-on vessel, you need to give way to it. And since the sailing vessel is under sail, while they may be the give-way vessel, they can do what they please and are under no obligation that I see defined anywhere to continue their heading until the crossing has been completed.

I assume the thought behind the rule is that since they are at the "mercy" of a wind they can't control, their actions take priority. Unless one is on the sailboat, it's impssible to know what is governing their decisions and actions. So "rights" are not really part of the equation.

We have never found this to be an inconvenience. Five-mile wide Bellingham Bay is a popular place for sailboaters because it often has good wind. Having sailed boats and been a member of a racing crew for a few seasons in the 1980s, I don't find it difficult to anticipate what a sailboat in the vicinity of our boat might do.

Our policy is very simple. If a sailboat under sail is on a converging heading that will bring us close together, regardless of whether or not we are the stand-on vessel, when we get close enough to be fairly sure of the sailboat's intentions, we always make a very obvious heading change to pass behind the sailboat even if at the moment it looks as though continuing on our heading will put us ahead of the sailboat by a bit.

I say obvious because we want the sailboat skipper to know what we're doing. So our initial heading change is done quickly and is about 30 degrees.

As we approach the sailboat we will start easing back toward our original heading so that we cross behind the sailboat within a reasonable distance for both of us.

If this cuts as much as a minute off our enroute time I would be surprised. As I said, we don't regard this as an inconvenience at all.

We have occasionally changed heading only to have the sailboat tack and go the other way. This is rare, though, particularly with a crewed sailboat, because we can see the crew getting ready to tack. But on the occasions where the tack is not forewarned, it's no problem to simply steer back toward our original heading and pass behind the sailboat.

Now if one is boating in a designated channel, which I assume much of the ICW, for example, is, this where the exceptions I mentioned in the first paragraph come into play, and it would be smart for powerboaters and sailboaters to know what they are.

To my wife and I, the Colregs that apply to our boat make sense and are logical. But, as a previous poster very correctly said, they depend on the logic, common sense, and self-responsibility of the folks driving the boats no matter what the propulsion means are and the relative positions of the vessels.
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Old 12-07-2014, 12:29 PM   #52
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Regardless of who is the Stand-on or Give-way vessel, I'm going to do whatever it takes so that I or someone else doesn't have a bad day. Defensive boating is my motto! My rules include: the bigger boat has the right-of-way, sailboats under sail I stay clear of, and jet skis I do everything possible to run them over.
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Old 12-07-2014, 12:47 PM   #53
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There have been great discussions online about the tonnage rule and getting out of the way of large ships, etc..etc...

All that work OK when there are only 2 boats involved.

When there are many vessels in a confined area such as the English Channel or approaches to NY, Chesapeake , etc....most rules fall back to rule 2.

So tacking in front of a powerboat when in confined and/or busy waters is the act of a skipper the may know a rule but not how to properly apply it.

The same can be said of a Trawler skipper making a last minute correction around a large vessel thinking, tonnage or trying to make the large vessels life easier.
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Old 12-07-2014, 12:49 PM   #54
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In general, I drive defensively on highways and back roads. I pilot defensively on boats. Have no self-inclusive ego problem of "I'm before you - so there"! My hours/days/years of traveling on terra ferma and on water remain quite enjoyable.

I will say though... if some idiot gets too pushy (in an obviously meaningful manner) I will push back just enough to satisfy my innate desire for conflict when/if necessary. That said: I do so only to rile them much as possible and hopefully raise their blood pressure. In the end I take what ever diversionary tactics are called for in order to avoid collision; letting them motor/sail on all in a flutter... while I laugh with big smile.
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Old 12-07-2014, 01:19 PM   #55
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What really matters is not who is right, but who is left.
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Old 12-07-2014, 01:33 PM   #56
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What really matters is not who is right, but who is left.
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Old 12-07-2014, 05:20 PM   #57
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Negotiating a "give way" course for avoiding a sailboat includes attempting to assess where it will head next. Is it getting knocked or lifted? What will cause it to change direction next, what is that new direction? Sometimes, like being confronted with a racing fleet, frequent changes of course and speed are necessary, the GPS track is an interesting record of avoiding action.
I don`t appreciate sailboats that tack close by into my obvious course, most are more sensible, those that do we have to cope with, safely. Small racing boat fleets can be the hardest to deal with,especially fast boats like 18ft class racing boats, spread out on different legs of a race. Avoiding one can easily create issues with another, sometimes I just hang back, watch and wait for an opening, then go for it.
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Old 12-07-2014, 05:20 PM   #58
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Well, not really. Rule 18a states that a power vessel shall give way to, among other things, a sailing vessel (under sail). There are some specific exceptions to this, but for the most part if a sailing vessel under sail tacks in front of you, even if you are the stand-on vessel, you need to give way to it. And since the sailing vessel is under sail, while they may be the give-way vessel, they can do what they please and are under no obligation that I see defined anywhere to continue their heading until the crossing has been completed.
Yes, the sailing vessel can be the give-way, and the power-driven vessel can be stand-on. At that point the sailor's obligation is defined in Rule 16:

83.16 Action by give-way vessel (Rule 16):
Every vessel which is directed to keep out of the way of another vessel shall, so far as possible, take early and substantial action to keep well clear.

They can do whatever they please, as long it's early, substantial, and they keep well clear. That prohibits tacking in front of you.

The more common problem is when a sailor thinks they can do whatever they want because they're the stand-on vessel:

83.17 Action by stand-on vessel (Rule 17):
(i) Where one of two vessels is to keep out of the way, the other shall keep her course and speed.

This does not give the sailor in the stand-on vessel any "right" to cut in front of any other boat. Stand-on means STAND ON. Not tack.

That said, I make an effort to consider the needs of other boaters, and what's convenient for them. I try to anticipate where they might tack, then avoid being in that spot.

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Small racing boat fleets can be the hardest to deal with,especially fast boats like 18ft class racing boats, spread out on different legs of a race. Avoiding one can easily create issues with another, sometimes I just hang back, watch and wait for an opening, then go for it.
Racing is a special case. If it's a sanctioned regatta, approved by the CG and notification has gone out, then the ColRegs don't apply. Avoid "their" section of water if at all possible, and give the racers plenty of room.

Also, interestingly, the rules we're all quoting only apply when TWO boats are involved. Add a third, and the rules go out the window. It's then up to each operator to use prudent seamanship. It's never prudent to go tearing through the middle of a race without considering the possibilities.
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Old 12-07-2014, 06:10 PM   #59
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I see this every day. In fact, out of the thousands of sailboats I've seen underway, only a very small fraction of them were actually sailing.



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Old 12-07-2014, 06:20 PM   #60
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That's because they spent so much time studying the rules of the road they are too scared to sail.
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