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Old 09-19-2015, 10:01 PM   #41
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Unless he was a pilot vessel.
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Old 09-19-2015, 10:03 PM   #42
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In the fog.
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Old 09-19-2015, 10:07 PM   #43
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noted thanks Bill - can't find a suitable emoticon
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Old 09-19-2015, 10:29 PM   #44
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It seems I don't have a clue either. What does 4 short blasts on the horn mean?
That you missed 1 blast or you did not do well in math or you just did not know
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Old 09-19-2015, 10:39 PM   #45
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What type of boat do you operate, Hawgwash? I don't see anything in your profile.
You may think his assessment is harsh but it's pretty much spot on. All the OP had to do was slow down and make a significant course change that should be apparent to the other vessel. In this case to the port to change to closing angle for the better as quick as possible. And do this as soon has he had doubts about what the intentions of the other vessel were.

Plus his vessel was arguably not prepared for the trip based on the fact that the horn was nonfunctional and the stalling issue.

And yes it's easy to say that now and when you weren't there. But not saying it does a disservice to anyone looking to learn from this.
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Old 09-19-2015, 10:41 PM   #46
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So where you boat commercial ships sound a signal that has no meaning in the situation described here!? I don't understand why they would open themselves up to that liability when it would be just as easy to sound the correct signal.
They are professionals and have everything to lose. Perhaps you don't have a complete understanding. By the time one sounds multiple short signals, disaster could be upon one. Better to give advance warning when needed.
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Old 09-19-2015, 10:54 PM   #47
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What should I have done?

Thanks for your comments Hawgwash. I agree that I should have responded differently. I should have:

1) Sounded 5 or more blasts in the horn immediately. This does not require him to respond on the VHF, only that he hears me. (That said, I don't think this would have promoted him to change his actions, as he didn't understand his obligations in the first place or slow down.)

2) At the same time slowing down to idle forward only.

3) do not turn to starboard, but maintain heading...turning to starboard would have increased the risk of collision in this case as he came across my bow before heading to his starboard.

I do not agree however with your assertion that Enterprise Channel isn't narrow: there isn't a lot of water between the kelp beds north of the reefs off Trial Islands. Also the track I showed on the chart is as I remember the situation but probably is a poor representation of the situation.

Typically I assess situations and regularly contact other vessels in VHF to arrange safe passes.


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Old 09-19-2015, 10:59 PM   #48
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It's common to hear 1-long 1-short when a boat requests a bridge opening. And the bridge will acknowledge in kind if granting, OR 5-short to signal the boat to wait until the bridge can be opened.

With our last sailboat, I went through the Feemont cut often and needed the bridge opened. The bridge is 30ft from the water and my mast 32.

The Promise is in the same Marina as I had my Sailboat, when I'm relaxing there I hear all the signals as well as monitor the radio, it's very entertaining esp. On the weekends.

Hey Mr. JD, don't beat yourself up too bad. You managed the situation, there was no collision, and nobody drowned. A good friend and sailor, (who taught me & my wife to sail) once cautioned me by saying 'it's amazing how quickly all hell can break loose'.

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Old 09-19-2015, 11:00 PM   #49
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A simple laminated placard of the USCG Rule 34 - Maneuvering and Warning signals for both International and Inland Waters should fix any memory issues:

Boat Docking - Nautical Sound Signals

http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName...Content#rule34
This was copied directly from the boat docking placard, (which I thank you for posting):
"1 short:
-overtaking to starboard (respond in kind)"

I find this very confusing. Who's starboard? Obviously, it MUST mean the starboard of the vessel being overtaken.
Why not just state it clearly and simply with, "I intend to leave you to my port"?
Agree?
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Old 09-19-2015, 11:04 PM   #50
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The following was copied and pasted from the USCG's site:

(i) one short blast to mean "I am altering my course to starboard"
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Old 09-19-2015, 11:07 PM   #51
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Thanks Captain Bill. You said "make a significant course change that should be apparent to the other vessel. In this case to the port to change to closing angle for the better as quick as possible"

I'm still not sure I should have made any course change in this instance as it was a narrow enough channel and turning to port would go agains the convention of "port to port" pass in a narrow channel.

BTW, the boats horn was functional. The bonehead of a skipper hadn't switched it on.

I have learned from this and will take faster action next time.


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Old 09-19-2015, 11:43 PM   #52
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Yeah, things can go crazy quickly.

Communicating by radio is most effective with passing-from-behind situations as forward boat's stern often displays its name, but that's only been a couple of times when I've been closely passed. It would be different if everyone had AIS, which I do not. Not a significant handicap yet since I presume everyone else is, well, whatever.
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Old 09-19-2015, 11:53 PM   #53
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It's frustrating when boats on the AICW do not have a visible name on the transom. Some are covered by dinghies, some are painted on the sides of the boat and not visible from behind. I also find many sailors do not monitor their radios.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:01 AM   #54
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They are professionals and have everything to lose. Perhaps you don't have a complete understanding. By the time one sounds multiple short signals, disaster could be upon one. Better to give advance warning when needed.
You're right. I don't even remotely, let alone completely, understand how you could think it takes any significantly more time to sound a horn 5 quick times than it does to sound it one prolonged time. And I would bet a maritime judge wouldn't completely understand it either.

But in this case I'll bow to the vast knowledge of manuvering signals, how and when they should be used you have apparently accumulated on your 200+ plus days as a cruise ship passenger.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:02 AM   #55
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It's frustrating when boats on the AICW do not have a visible name on the transom. Some are covered by dinghies, some are painted on the sides of the boat and not visible from behind. I also find many sailors do not monitor their radios.
Perhaps the best to be done is to give a passing signal and then be prepared for the other boat to do something weird.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:06 AM   #56
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Thanks for your comments Hawgwash. I agree that I should have responded differently. I should have:

1) Sounded 5 or more blasts in the horn immediately. This does not require him to respond on the VHF, only that he hears me. (That said, I don't think this would have promoted him to change his actions, as he didn't understand his obligations in the first place or slow down.)
...
That required you to maneuver to avoid collision, which you did!
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:10 AM   #57
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Thanks Captain Bill. You said "make a significant course change that should be apparent to the other vessel. In this case to the port to change to closing angle for the better as quick as possible"

I'm still not sure I should have made any course change in this instance as it was a narrow enough channel and turning to port would go agains the convention of "port to port" pass in a narrow channel.

BTW, the boats horn was functional. The bonehead of a skipper hadn't switched it on.

I have learned from this and will take faster action next time.


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If the breaker is turned off, it's nonfunctional at the time of need.

The convention of port to port goes out the window in the event of a collision. And if you had made the change soon enough you would not have stalled and the close quarters situation most likely never would have happened.

And I don't mean to pick on you. I'm guessing all or at least most of us have been in these kinds of situations and not always made the best decisions. But we do hopefully learn from them.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:13 AM   #58
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You're right. I don't even remotely, let alone completely, understand how you could think it takes any significantly more time to sound a horn 5 quick times than it does to sound it one prolonged time. And I would bet a maritime judge wouldn't completely understand it either.

But in this case I'll bow to the vast knowledge of manuvering signals, how and when they should be used you have apparently accumulated on your 200+ plus days as a cruise ship passenger.
My point was that one should not wait for the last instant to signal. Have rarely needed to signal except to announce my entrance/exit at a marina with high breakwater or to test/exercise the horn every day underway (enjoying the echoing under the Carquinez Strait bridges).
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:14 AM   #59
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It's frustrating when boats on the AICW do not have a visible name on the transom. Some are covered by dinghies, some are painted on the sides of the boat and not visible from behind. I also find many sailors do not monitor their radios.
Then there are the ones with the stylized names with pictures incorporated in them. Or the name written in a font that makes them all but unreadable till you are right on top of them.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:18 AM   #60
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Then there are the ones with the stylized names with pictures incorporated in them. Or the name written in a font that makes them all but unreadable till you are right on top of them.
Illegal for USCG documented vessels, but does it concern for us "tiny tot" recreational vehicles?
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