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-   -   Why a flashing light at the top of the mast? (http://www.sailnet.com/forums/gear-maintenance/45497-why-flashing-light-top-mast.html)

surftom 07-30-2008 08:57 AM

Why a flashing light at the top of the mast?
 
Just installed my Orca LED mast light that has Nav/Anchor/Strobe
Was curious when/if/why you would use the strobe.
The other 2 modes I can figure out ;)

Tom

T37Chef 07-30-2008 09:27 AM

Distress or low visibility?

JohnRPollard 07-30-2008 09:52 AM

As I recall, technically there is no time when it is legal for a sailing vessel to use the flashing strobe.

However, some folks like to have the strobe as a signal of last resort -- to make a larger vessel or SAR resources aware of their location when all else fails.

sailingdog 07-30-2008 09:56 AM

JRP is correct, there is no legal use for a non-emergency boat to have a strobe. However, they are often used to warn off or signal other boats. The OGM trianchor/strobe is a nice unit. I've had one on my boat for the last two years.

SteveInMD 07-30-2008 10:01 AM

The rule on strobes is different for US vs international waters. I think an strobe is okay for international distress.

Cruisingdad 07-30-2008 11:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JohnRPollard (Post 347713)
As I recall, technically there is no time when it is legal for a sailing vessel to use the flashing strobe.

However, some folks like to have the strobe as a signal of last resort -- to make a larger vessel or SAR resources aware of their location when all else fails.

Yeppo.

- CD

JohnRPollard 07-30-2008 11:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SteveInMD (Post 347721)
The rule on strobes is different for US vs international waters. I think an strobe is okay for international distress.

Steve,

I'm not an expert on this question, but take a look at Rule 36 and Rule 37. They seem to suggest that exactly the opposite is the case, i.e. the strobe is only permitted as an emergency signal on Inland Waters of the US:

Light Signals - Stobes

Boasun 07-30-2008 11:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SteveInMD (Post 347721)
The rule on strobes is different for US vs international waters. I think an strobe is okay for international distress.

The strobe light is under the Inland Rules for distress. There are many devices for distress signaling. They can be use singlely or combined with other distress signals. What ever it takes to get the word out that you are in trouble big time. :eek:
You will note that the firefly lights on your life jackets are also strobes, thus this should have indicated what that strobe at the top of the mast is used for. Distress :rolleyes: Not Disco dancing :D
I have noticed that those firefly strobes are easier to see then a steady light from that 1 cell incandenscent life jacket light. Do a couple of MOB drills at night and note the difference. And you will understand why you have that tiny light on your life jacket. :cool:

Cruisingdad 07-30-2008 11:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Boasun (Post 347759)
The strobe light is under the Inland Rules for distress. There are many devices for distress signaling. They can be use singlely or combined with other distress signals. What ever it takes to get the word out that you are in trouble big time. :eek:
You will note that the firefly lights on your life jackets are also strobes, thus this should have indicated what that strobe at the top of the mast is used for. Distress :rolleyes: Not Disco dancing :D
I have noticed that those firefly strobes are easier to see then a steady light from that 1 cell incandenscent life jacket light. Do a couple of MOB drills at night and note the difference. And you will understand why you have that tiny light on your life jacket. :cool:

Agreed, Boasun. We hook those on to everyone - especially the kids if out at night. Ours are the water activated. I consider them invalueable. If purchase a masthead light, I too would certainly buy the strobe. Whatever it takes.

- CD

capttb 07-30-2008 12:17 PM

Just to add to the confusion some kayak fisherman in our area have taken to displaying red or green flashing strobes at night. First time I saw one outside the harbor I thought it prudent to hail him & make sure it WASN'T a distress signal.


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