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post #17 of Old 09-04-2008
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Knowing full well the emotions this subject can stir up amongst many of you, I hesitate to even get involved in this, but…

I understand there is one and only one rule – DON’T HIT ANYONE!!!

That said, there are the “other rules”.

“If you were on Starboard and to Leeward of him, you would have ROW.”

That refers to two different rules. In the situation cited, the only rule that applies is the starboard tack boat is privileged. The leeward position only comes into play if both boats are on the same tack (No, I cannot quote chapter and verse.).

"It was not specified that the boats were racing but that probably doesn't matter."

Yes, that doesn’t matter!!! I usually try to cut boats obviously racing some slack, but I’ve also seen some race courses set up in some pretty stupid places.

"Some older salts used the term "Privileged" and "Burdened"."

I’m just plain old!!!

"Stand on is just that, it implies that you WILL stand on, or at a minimum signal intentions to do otherwise PRIOR to changing course so that the burdened vessel does not in maneuvering to avoid you instead place themselves, and you in greater jeopardy."

Just for S&G, let’s say that the privileged vessel sees the impending and very real threat of collision. She gives a horn blast to signal her intentions to alter her course, giving way. Her signal is not confirmed by a return signal. Waiting as long as she can, she finally executes the course change. The burdened vessel also makes a course change and a collision occurs. At the time of impact, the vessel originally privileged is now on port tack and the vessel originally burdened is on starboard tack.


"horn signals:
Pass to port - 1 short blast,
pass to starboard, 2 short blasts."

I was under the impression that one blast means I’m changing my course to my starboard and two blasts means I’m altering course to my port. Again, I cannot quote chapter and verse.

"This might help!
Basic Sailing: Rules of Sailing"

This has to be one of the poorest codifications of the rules I’ve ever seen!!!

"The other disclousure is that I mean stand on - give way... i'm from Mexico and fail ro remember this terms, sorry for that."

Alejandro, I presume your first language is Castilian and you are obviously multi-lingual. I’ve been travelling overseas for work for 29 years and can only speak one language - PLEASE do not apologize.

Beyond the “one and only” rule, I heartily agree with the advice to show some courtesy and common sense out there.

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