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Old 09-22-2015, 10:16 PM   #141
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made no signals, almost

Took a three-hour jaunt from Vallejo to Martinez and return. On the return, going westward, there was a barge being pushed by a tug, amazingly going a knot slower than I. I was approaching on his port side and he a quarter mile ahead.

I had a choice. Pass on his portside and cross ahead as my destination was ultimately to starboard, or turn 15 degrees to starboard to cross behind his stern. Took the second option and passed him to my portside.

Turned out the barge/tug was also heading for the Napa River, passing by Vallejo. Shortly after my passing him in Carquinez Strait, the tug's communication with traffic control revealed its destination.

Saw no need to communicate with the tug by horn or otherwise. Ditto the tug.

Made a prolonged signal approaching my marina because the tide had dropped since leaving, and the breakwater was beginning to obscure the view.
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Old 09-22-2015, 10:29 PM   #142
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Originally Posted by Britannia View Post
As a former (very recently) sailor, I didn't realize that there was so much animosity towards them for not knowing the rules of the road. Of course, I was well aware of the wayward ways of those ignorant power boaters. Hmmm, I wonder what's going on there?

As you can see, as a former sailor I tried 5 short blasts to get this stupid ship out of my way, but the ignorant pilot just kept going.



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Like many on the Forum I grew up sailing and gaining racing experience offshore. Totally exposed to the elements no matter what the weather.

What we have seen all too often in the PNW are sail boats under power equipped with murky Eisenglass dodgers that help keep the helms person dry and warmer but lack good visibility in foggy and wet weather. As mentioned, a long blast seems to wake them up, but not always. Power boaters with ear buds on don't respond to a warning blast either.
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:46 PM   #143
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I'm with Mark on this. We simply assume any boat on a potential collision course will do the wrong thing regardless of who's stand-on and give-way so we react long before the situation can become at all dangerous. It's defensive boating and it's no different than defensive driving.

We don't care who has stand-on rights, we simply do what is smart to avoid a situation in the first place.

Almost nobody uses horn signals up here. In the 17 years we been driving our cruising boat and the eleven years we were using our fishing boat before that, I cannot recall a single instance of any boat, recreational or commercial, using a horn signal to communicate passing, meeting, etc. Even the ferries remain silent underway other than giving a short toot at someone they think might not be aware of their presence. (They do sound their horns per the regulations when in fog.)

I've only known one boater who used a horn signal and that was a fellow who always gave a long blast when approaching our harbor entrance. It's a legal signal but it so pissed off everyone in the harbor that the port finally told the guy to stop blowing the horn and he did.

We always go around the back of tugs and tows or commercial vessels if we're in the same batch of water they are even if it appears that we could squeak by in front. We also slow down if necessary to ensure plenty of room between us and a crossing vessel. It's surprising how many recreational skippers don't seem to realize that it's okay to pull the throttles back once they're up at cruising speed.

To me, the whole issue of what to do when in proximity of another boat is a non-issue. As others have said, it is dead easy to avoid a potentially problematical situation simply by looking ahead, being aware of what's going on, and taking "defensive" action long before it becomes critical

Like most things in boating, it's simply common sense. Some boaters have it and some seem not to.

The photo below is a common occurance for us in the islands. We always make sure it's never an issue for either us or the ferry.
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:52 PM   #144
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Here we only need to be licensed if operating a boat >10 knots. As you can imagine that lets most trawler operators out, but we tend to get licensed anyway. As well as a practical test you have to arrange independently, Maritime set a written test, and there are some questions which if you get wrong, you fail. Others you can get wrong, with a limit. The tester discusses your results with you.
We need to learn the sound signals. I think skippers are reluctant to sound 5 blasts. I did it to a non right of way ferry once, he wasn`t too happy but at least he knew I was there. If you think there is a problem looming, it will likely get worse fast, so signal, now, while there is time. I call it the "WTF are you doing?" signal. It`s part of your duty to avoid a collision.
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:57 PM   #145
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Never found it necessary yet to blow five-short signals (which means to me I'm unable to avoid you or I'm pissed.) Even if I'm the stand-on vessel, I maneuver before that stage to avoid collision.

Passed several barges being pushed by tugs today. In one instance there was one headed directly toward me. At 1.5 miles distance, I turned several degrees to starboard, and we ended up with a nice pass without unnecessary communication or fuss.



Don't 99+ percent of boat meetings work similarly?
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Old 09-23-2015, 05:38 AM   #146
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Originally Posted by BryanF
So always assume the other guy is out to run you down.
That way you can be pleasantly surprised when he does what he is expected to do

ddalme put up...
When I get in a situation that I don't know what the other skipper is going to do, I always slow and give way. I don't care who has the right away. Most of the time the vessel entering my course is much bigger and working for a living-me? I'm retired and not in a hurry.

Cardude wrote...
This is my rule as well. I just give way regardless of who has the right of way.

For mine...
While I agree, this is a good mindset to have, if one is the clear stand on vessel, it pays to give the other vessel at least a chance to make good. Otherwise if you bail too early, you might actually end up heading towards where he was just about to head, thus complicating something that needn't have been. Also, if he/she had assessed the situation correctly, and was planning to do the right thing, pre-empting his/her actions might well p*** him/her off, and rightly so. Just sayin'
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Old 09-23-2015, 05:54 AM   #147
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Is anyone but me having the thought that the tone of this thread argues pretty strongly for universal licensing and MUCH more training than any state, to my knowledge, requires for pleasure boaters? Don't think anybody here wants that but come on folks, please stop arguing against knowing the rules. Bill
Makes good sense. All Australian States now require this. About time the US and Canada...maybe the UK as well...caught up. It is the 21st century, after all.
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Old 09-23-2015, 10:12 AM   #148
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Makes good sense. All Australian States now require this. About time the US and Canada...maybe the UK as well...caught up. It is the 21st century, after all.
Canada had had recreational competency testing for over ten years now. Mandatory for the last six.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pleasu..._Operator_Card
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Old 09-23-2015, 10:42 AM   #149
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Canada had had recreational competency testing for over ten years now. Mandatory for the last six.
Yeah but...
The competency exam can be taken online and someone else can do it for you.
A certificate of competency can be issued by completing a rental boat safety checklist.

BTW, in case our neighbours did not know...
US citizens can use their State competency certificate (if there is one) in Canadian waters, for up to 45 days before requiring a Canadian Certificate.
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Old 09-23-2015, 02:13 PM   #150
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Yeah but...
The competency exam can be taken online and someone else can do it for you.
A certificate of competency can be issued by completing a rental boat safety checklist.

BTW, in case our neighbours did not know...
US citizens can use their State competency certificate (if there is one) in Canadian waters, for up to 45 days before requiring a Canadian Certificate.
Good to know. I have the WA State card. If only I had the time to spend 46 days in BC waters!
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Old 09-23-2015, 04:14 PM   #151
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My perhaps incorrect understanding is that boaters over a certain age and/or over a certain time of experience are exempted (grandfathered) from the WA and CDN programs.

I may be wrong on the experience thing, but I recall reading about the age exemption from at least the WA requirement when it was announced. I'm not sure at all about an exemption from the CDN program.
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Old 09-23-2015, 05:04 PM   #152
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My perhaps incorrect understanding is that boaters over a certain age and/or over a certain time of experience are exempted (grandfathered) from the WA and CDN programs.

I may be wrong on the experience thing, but I recall reading about the age exemption from at least the WA requirement when it was announced. I'm not sure at all about an exemption from the CDN program.
You are correct in regards to the WA boaters education card. Essentially, they phased it in by birth date. In 2008, anyone 20 years old or younger had to have it. Every year, they increased the age by five years so that in 2012, those 40 years old and younger had to have it. At that point they increased the age 10 years per year until 2014 when the age was capped at 59. So anyone who was 60 or older in 2014 was not required to get the card at all. At 57, I was required to have the card by 2014, but got it about 5 years ago I think. My Mom, at 81 years, never has to get one.

I think it is a good program.
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Old 09-23-2015, 05:06 PM   #153
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My new auto pilot will follow the waypoints that my GPS or computer gives it. If I want to avoid a hazard, then come back onto the course to the next waypoint, the software will turn the boat abruptly and go all the way back to the exact line it was on before the maneuver. I don't like to do that, so when the avoidance is done, I don't re-engage the "track" feature until I get to the next waypoint, unless I am so clear of others that a sharp turn towards the previous track will not create any hazard.
I am sure that when I am the stand on vessel and a give way vessel isn't giving way, I will assume he is utilizing his own "track" feature and get relatively close before adjusting his course. My wife and I have had several discussions of this happening, and so far, the other guys have all eventually adjusted their course. Never as quickly as she would like, but always soon enough to stay out of our way. I remain ready to alter course before it gets too late.
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Old 09-23-2015, 06:22 PM   #154
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I'm not sure at all about an exemption from the CDN program.
There is no age or experience exemption in Canada.
Anyone operating any pleasure craft equipped with a motor must have and carry a proof of competency card issued by a recognized issuer.
The only acceptations are the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.

Foreign operators must have and carry a competency certificate recognized by their resident state. That certificate permits pleasure boating in Canada for 45 consecutive days.

Pop into AK on the 45th day for 24 hours and the clock is reset.
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Old 09-23-2015, 06:27 PM   #155
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Foreign operators must have and carry a competency certificate recognized by their resident state. That certificate permits pleasure boating in Canada for 45 consecutive days.

Pop into AK on the 45th day for 24 hours and the clock is reset.
What about foreign operators from states with no competency requirement or in which the boater is exempt from a competency certificate? The wording of your statement indicates that in these cases, the 45 day limit in Canada would not apply.
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Old 09-23-2015, 06:39 PM   #156
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What about foreign operators from states with no competency requirement or in which the boater is exempt from a competency certificate? The wording of your statement indicates that in these cases, the 45 day limit in Canada would not apply.
A good question and bureaucracies being what they are, who knows.
Not trying to elude the question and I will endeavour to find out.

A non certified Canadian resident has 60 days from date of purchase to acquire a certificate so it seems there is wiggle room.

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...I'm back.
The answer man left the office 15 minutes ago.
I'll be on to him bright and early tomorrow.
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Old 09-23-2015, 11:52 PM   #157
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So anyone who was 60 or older in 2014 was not required to get the card at all.
Dave;
Unless I am reading it wrong, there is a contradiction in the WA age exemption.

Section (3)(a) through (j) lists all the exemptions including age, then Section (4) negates Section (3)(j) Any person born before January 1, 1955.

Is that in reference to the January 1, 2016 total phase in date?
January 1, 2016 - All boat operators.

If age is no longer an exemption then there are likely a lot of WA Boomers cruising around WA and BC unaware they are, um, certifiable.

(3) The following persons are not required to carry a boater education card:

(a) The operator of a vessel engaged in a lawful commercial fishery operation as licensed by the department of fish and wildlife under Title 77 RCW. However, the person when operating a vessel for recreational purposes must carry either a valid commercial fishing license issued by the department of fish and wildlife or a boater education card;

(b) Any person who possesses a valid marine operator license issued by the United States coast guard when operating a vessel authorized by such coast guard license. However, the person when operating a vessel for recreational purposes must carry either a valid marine operator license issued by the United States coast guard or a boater education card;

(c) Any person who is legally engaged in the operation of a vessel that is exempt from vessel registration requirements under chapter 88.02 RCW and applicable rules and is used for purposes of law enforcement or official government work. However, the person when operating a vessel for recreational purposes must carry a boater education card;

(d) Any person at least twelve years old renting, chartering, or leasing a motor driven boat or vessel with an engine power of fifteen horsepower or greater who completes a commission-approved motor vessel safety operating and equipment checklist each time before operating the motor driven boat or vessel, except that an operator of a personal watercraft shall comply with the age requirements under RCW 79A.60.190;

(e) Any person who is not a resident of Washington state and who does not operate a motor driven boat or vessel with an engine power of fifteen horsepower or greater in waters of the state for more than sixty consecutive days;

(f) Any person who is not a resident of Washington state and who holds a current out-of-state or out-of-country certificate or card that is equivalent to the rules adopted by the commission;

(g) Any person who has purchased the boat or vessel within the last sixty days, and has a bill of sale in his or her possession to document the date of purchase;

(h) Any person, including those less than twelve years of age, who is involved in practicing for, or engaging in, a permitted racing event where a valid document has been issued by the appropriate local, state, or federal government agency for the event, and is available for inspection on-site during the racing event;

(i) Any person who is not yet required to have a boater education card under the phased schedule in RCW 79A.60.630(2)(a); and

(j) Any person born before January 1, 1955.

(4) Except as provided in subsection (3)(a) through (i) of this section, a boater must carry a boater education card while operating a vessel and is required to present the boater education card, or alternative license as provided in subsection (3)(a) and (b) of this section, to a law enforcement officer upon request.
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Old 09-24-2015, 12:05 AM   #158
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Dave again;
Never mind, I just read 79A.60.630(2)(a).
Looks like after Jan 1, 2016 everyone is required to have a card, including mom.
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Old 09-24-2015, 06:00 AM   #159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawgwash View Post
Yeah but...
The competency exam can be taken online and someone else can do it for you.
A certificate of competency can be issued by completing a rental boat safety checklist.

BTW, in case our neighbours did not know...
US citizens can use their State competency certificate (if there is one) in Canadian waters, for up to 45 days before requiring a Canadian Certificate.
In Queensland anyway, we have to not only do the theoretical and written test, (not online, but under supervision), but a live practical boat handling course and test as well. Your car licence then has this endorsement added to it, and it is renewed at the same time.

Boats that travel at slower displacement speeds under 10 knots used to be exempt, (sounds like they still are in New South Wales), but in Queensland, from about 10 years ago, a licence is required for all vessels powered by a motor over, I think, ~ 6hp. Well, here is the exact wording...

"You must have a marine licence to drive a recreational boat that has an engine power greater than 4.5kW. You don't need to carry your licence with you on the water, but you must have proof of identity with you. You can verify your licence online."
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Old 09-24-2015, 11:15 AM   #160
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Dave again;
Never mind, I just read 79A.60.630(2)(a).
Looks like after Jan 1, 2016 everyone is required to have a card, including mom.
Thanks Hawgwash, you are right. I hadn't looked at it for a long time and never saw the last few years of phase in. IMO, I think it is a good move.
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