Give AIS a rest - Page 16 - SailNet Community
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post #151 of 157 Old 08-19-2014
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Re: Give AIS a rest

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Originally Posted by svzephyr44 View Post
When operating in coastal waters that leaves out a lot of vessels. In particular fishing boats seem to prefer not to carry AIS.
I agree. However there are a lot of ships and boats not required to carry AIS that have them fitted. I've installed AIS on tugs not required for the same reasons I noted above -- the tugs don't want to be run down by big traffic any more than we do, and want the names of the ships so they'll answer.

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Yes! I can see them!!!!!!! Lots of them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Which goes to my earlier point about visibility from the bridge.

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No one wants a collision..especially the ship pilots.
Darn tootin'

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post #152 of 157 Old 08-19-2014
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Re: Give AIS a rest

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Originally Posted by svzephyr44 View Post
I didn't really think about this until Dave brought up point "2." When I was sailing East about 30 miles off the south cost of Portugal I was run down by an MSC freighter obviously making a bee line to a distant harbor. I was under sail in 25 knot winds and the CPA was about 3/4 mile. Keeping an eye on things I noticed the CPA was slowly decreasing. I assumed that the freighter had done a small turn to take my stern but when the CPA got down to 1/4 mile and stopped changing I called the freighter on the radio. No response. Tried about three times. No response. With 20-20 hindsight (and the point of my post) was that the fact they were not answering the radio should have been a clue that no one in the bridge was paying attention (or no one was in the bridge.) At this point the tanker was finally visible and I tacked away from his course. I got on the radio and said "shipname, shipname, you are on a collision course with me, please alter course to starboard immediately. I repeated this transmission about 5 times without any noticeable change in the tanker's heading. I finally got a response "where are you, who are you?" as the bow of the freighter passed about 200 yards behind my stern. To my knowledge they never did alter course.

To Dave's point "1" the current official rule is: Regulation 19 of SOLAS Chapter V - Carriage requirements for shipborne navigational systems and equipment - sets out navigational equipment to be carried on board ships, according to ship type. In 2000, IMO adopted a new requirement (as part of a revised new chapter V) for all ships to carry automatic identification systems (AISs) capable of providing information about the ship to other ships and to coastal authorities automatically.

The regulation requires AIS to be fitted aboard all ships of 300 gross tonnage and upwards engaged on international voyages, cargo ships of 500 gross tonnage and upwards not engaged on international voyages and all passenger ships irrespective of size. The requirement became effective for all ships by 31 December 2004.


When operating in coastal waters that leaves out a lot of vessels. In particular fishing boats seem to prefer not to carry AIS.

Fair winds and following seas
Well, that's good information. If these big guys are regularly on autopilot with no watch, it really highlights the importance of spotting them early and altering course regardless of who may have right of way. The only situation that is scary is when they are coming up from behind but if they are on auto, they should be traveling in a predictable straight line. It's what I'll be doing if being overtaken by one again.

Alberg 35: With a philosophical flourish Cato throws himself upon his sword; I quietly take to the ship.
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post #153 of 157 Old 08-19-2014
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Re: Give AIS a rest

What i found interesting on our passage down the european coast and near the shipping lanes is how often ships captains go at it with each other over the VHF. A lot of yelling and screaming about who will give way. Lots of macho stuff but one always gives way eventually.

For us though when we have had to contact a ship there has been nothing but courtesy and politeness from the skipper of the ship. Always more than willing to move a couple of degrees to avoid collision. I think they know how hard it is to change course when seas are big, 30 knots of wind and you are out on a pole to pole run.
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post #154 of 157 Old 09-03-2014
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Re: Give AIS a rest

This entire thread reminds me of the punks in town who will step right out in front of you (while your driving a car or truck) with their hoodies on looking down... and do so with no reservation. The couple times I've honked or yelled at them, I get the "you have to stop for me and a finger". That's all well and good (and probably per the law), but IF I don't and your injured or dead.... what good were all the rules?

In MY mind, as the driver of a 5.5 ton, 31' sailboat... I have NO business even remotely considering "holding my course" when a ship is in semi close proximitiy (if a close call or collision is imminent).

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post #155 of 157 Old 09-03-2014
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Re: Give AIS a rest

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Originally Posted by Dave_E View Post
reminds me of the punks in town who will step right out in front of you (while your driving a car or truck) with their hoodies on looking down... and do so with no reservation. The couple times I've honked or yelled at them, I get the "you have to stop for me and a finger".

Dave
I had a V8 in a car without much muffler. As soon as they do that I would just accelerate towards them

Funny how quick they could move

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post #156 of 157 Old 09-03-2014
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Re: Give AIS a rest

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I would love to see something official that clarifies "always in effect, but doesn't make much difference"
The rules don't come into effect unless their is risk of collision.

If I am sailing in the Long island sound and you are sailing off the coast of Australia the rules mean nothing.

If I see a big ship a couple miles off and see that their is no risk of collision but that their might be in 10 minutes it is both prudent and courteous for me to make an early and significant course change so the ship can see that I am not now nor will in the future be a threat.

You are under no obligation to hold course unless their is risk of collision. 99.99 percent of times you change your course long before their is a risk.

I was going about 3 knots heading north getting near the tappenz bridge in the east river.

A container ship was behind me doing about 6 knots.
I did a 90 port to the far side of the channel, then two more 90's to port to come in behind him.
There was no way I was going to let him pass me under the bridge and blow me onto the bridge supports.

We get it into our heads that we are going in a specific direction. It doesn't usually matter. If a 180 degree turn for 5 minutes will change the dynamics so it is completely safe that is what I'm going to do, even if it looks a little stupid, I don't care.

If they want to hit me they have to catch me first.

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Last edited by davidpm; 09-03-2014 at 07:49 PM.
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post #157 of 157 Old 09-04-2014
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Re: Give AIS a rest

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Originally Posted by davidpm View Post
We get it into our heads that we are going in a specific direction. It doesn't usually matter. If a 180 degree turn for 5 minutes will change the dynamics so it is completely safe that is what I'm going to do, even if it looks a little stupid, I don't care.

If they want to hit me they have to catch me first.
IMHO, far too many sailors don't know how to slow down to advantage. I see this on the race-course all the time: a group of slower boats will be rounding a mark together and some go-fast moron charges right up the backside of one of them thinking that somehow he has a right to do that 'because he's faster'. If he had any brains he'd slow down, take an opening and cross out ahead of them instead.

There's nothing stupid about getting out of the way of a big ship. Whether it's a shipping channel or a road, it's safe practice to give way to anything bigger than you. No point being 'dead right'.

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