Legal distance for towing another boat? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 23 Old 04-01-2015 Thread Starter
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Legal distance for towing another boat?

I am in Nevis/St. Kitts in the Carib. I just watched a mega yacht pick up anchor and tow a support boat behind them. It sure seemed too long to me as it would be easy for someone not to realize there was a tow rope between the two boats.

What's the law?
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Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things y%^&*.....oh never mind. 90% of the people on sailing forums already use that as their signature! I'm not a conformist.

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post #2 of 23 Old 04-01-2015 Thread Starter
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

I don't know why I can't get my pictures to show up....used the insert photo icon and the URL

pic.twitter.com/L5TZgYHl6T

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things y%^&*.....oh never mind. 90% of the people on sailing forums already use that as their signature! I'm not a conformist.
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post #3 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

I don't think there is a law per se. There are lights you should show for short and long tows. For support boats (including dinghies) people don't generally show them. You pretty much want the towed boat to be out of the immediate wake of the forward boat and far enough back to not run into the back of the towing boat.

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post #4 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pamlicotraveler View Post
I am in Nevis/St. Kitts in the Carib. I just watched a mega yacht pick up anchor and tow a support boat behind them. It sure seemed too long to me as it would be easy for someone not to realize there was a tow rope between the two boats.

What's the law?
pic.twitter.com/L5TZgYHl6T
I'd be curious too. I've seen the same thing in the Bahamas.

Ralph

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post #5 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

as per the answer on Twitter, it is the lites and shapes needed on said tow that make it legal, so a lack of then it is illegal

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post #6 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

Colregs:
Rule 24 - Towing and Pushing

(a) A power-driven vessel when towing astern shall exhibit:

(i) Instead of the light prescribed in Rule 23(a)(i) or 23(a)(ii), two masthead lights in a vertical line. When the length of the tow, measuring from the stern of the towing vessel to the after end of the tow, exceeds 200 meters, three such lights in a vertical line;
(ii) sidelights;
(iii) a sternlight;
(iv) a towing light in a vertical line above the sternlight; and
(v) when the length of the tow exceeds 200 meters, a diamond shape where it can best be seen.
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post #7 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

You can use a Basket up in the rigging for a dayshape for a stern tow.

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post #8 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

500M TO 1KM Tows are common.

It can be really hard to make out the lights shown as the tug and towed item can have a multitude of additional work lights.

Mind you in the Eastern Carib tugs towing unlit barges on long tows at night are also commonplace.
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post #9 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

Law??? In the CARIBBEAN?????

They tow them up and down the whole chain. Some tenders can't fit on the superyachts so have to be towed, or driven. Many can be lifted but it takes so long and they want the guests off without delay so they tow.
Some get shipped back to Lauderdale or accross the atlantic. The big boats go by their own steam.

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post #10 of 23 Old 04-01-2015
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Re: Legal distance for towing another boat?

The longest tow I have run across was 9500m. I doubt that a mega yacht has enough line to tow something 'too long'.

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