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  #61  
Old 09-23-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccriders View Post
DavidPM & Jackdale,
Obviously one can get into deep legal arguments about this subject and being that we are not judges, cannot resolve here. I said to use a sea anchor so that the single hander will not run into something. Lights and shapes are the only means of communicating a vessel not under command, which it would not be if the single hander is not/cannot be on deck maintaining a watch.
What other options do you suggest?
CC - There are no lights or shapes to indicate that no watch is being mainatined on a vessel. It is not NUC.

You are legally still under way.

Quote:
The word "underway" means that a vessel is not at anchor, or made fast to the shore, or aground.
You are not "anchored" as in afixed to the bottom. If you were you, would show an all round white.

Further to inappropriate use of NUC lights and shapes:

Quote:
Seafarers are reminded that NUC signals
should only be used by “vessels not under
command”. As defined in Rule 3(f) of the
International Regulations for Preventing
Collisions at Sea (COLREGS) 1972 (as amended)
a “vessel not under command” is unable to
manoeuvre in accordance with the Rules
through some exceptional circumstance and is
unable to keep out of the way of other vessels.
2. Unfortunately, there appears to be an
increasing use of NUC signals by vessels in
circumstances which cannot reasonably be
defined as exceptional. For example, vessels
have been reported using NUC signals while
drifting off ports and terminals awaiting
orders. In some cases, vessels erroneously or
falsely display NUC signals when their main
engines or ancillary machinery are shut down
for reasons other than breakdown or necessary
maintenance. Such vessels must adhere to their
collision avoidance responsibilities as powerdriven
vessels underway (Rule 18 of the
COLREGS).
3. A vessel which is underway and stopped
(unless, of course, a “vessel not under
command”) must not use the NUC signal but
show the appropriate lights and shapes as
prescribed in Rules 23, 24, 25 and 26 of the
COLREGS and must take action to avoid
collision as required.
http://www.dft.gov.uk/mca/mgn152.pdf

I would suggest maintaining a watch and not being a hazard to shipping.

Here is a judge's opinion for you.

Give it a careful read.

FindACase™ | GRANHOLM v. THE VESSEL TFL EXPRESS
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Last edited by jackdale; 09-23-2012 at 01:57 PM.
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  #62  
Old 09-23-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

I would strongly suggest not to drop a sea anchor if not absolutly nessesary as it will stop you getting out of the way quick if you have to. Better to heave to as then you can change things quick without cutting a sea anchor lose.

ATB

Michael
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  #63  
Old 09-23-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccriders View Post
Lights and shapes are the only means of communicating a vessel not under command, which it would not be if the single hander is not/cannot be on deck maintaining a watch.
What other options do you suggest?
In short in the eyes of the law you do not have a right to single-hand your boat.
You do have a responsibility however to maintain a watch.

If you can't maintain that watch and/or are not able or willing to assume the responsibility for any damage you cause due to an improper watch it is your responsibility to make other arrangements.

It would be great from our point of view if the law had special rules for single-handers. It however does not.

Abby from the above link was sailing, she was stand-on, and was run down by a power boat with two people in the watch station. She was still found partly at fault by a judge. She was not on watch. It is as simple as that.

Another thought for you. Let's say you have 4 people with you. You hit a storm it's bad, lasts for three days. One guy gets seasick can't stand watch. The other three are exhausted due to brutal shifts. Frankly none of you are in any condition to stand a watch.
It don't matter, the rules are clear you either stand watch or accept your share of the responsibility for anything bad that happens while you break them.

The kicker is that if something bad happens the chances are almost 100% that at least some of the blame will fall on you regardless of what the other guy did.
That is the most important lesson I learned from the Farwell book.
Don't hit anyone or let anyone hit you because in the eyes of the law it almost always takes both parties both being less than perfect to cause a collision.
As far as I could tell by reading that book is than in the eyes of the law there is no such thing as an accident only failure of seamanship for both parties. They see their job as just to pick a percentage for each party.

Last edited by davidpm; 09-23-2012 at 07:13 PM.
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Old 09-23-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidpm View Post

It would be great from our point of view if the law had special rules for single-handers. It however does not.
Seriously???

Can you offer an example of what might be such a Special Rule?

Perhaps it's just me, but if someone is overly concerned about what current Maritime Law has to say about singlehanded voyaging, to the extent that it might actually impact their decision whether or not to do so, well... they're probably not cut out for such voyaging, to begin with...

For most singlehanders, I think the far more relevant concern is insurance... IMHO, Rule #1 for a solo passagemaker should be "Don't Sail a Boat You Can't Afford to Lose"... (grin)
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Old 09-23-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

When I'm working on a commercial vessel I follow the letter of the law. And now, when navigating the u.s. waters recreationally, I almost do, as to not jepordize my carreer. I boat recreationally in foriegn waters often and the places I hang, there basically is no law enforcement on the water to speak of, no such thing as no wake zone, or a water nazi that gives marine tickets. Not really a prevalent force anyway's. When I'm single handling off shore, and sleeping, I'm breaking the law of watch keeping. I take measures to ensure I don't get run down and in 22 years I haven't even come close. At least not that I know of, maybe I was asleep... So.. not that I care if they make a law for us or not, because I don't, but...just for thought. what if there was a light configuration and day shape that say's. " hey, I'm a solo sailor and I'm tired, please don't hit me" or now that AIS is so easy and affordable, it would show you as a singlehandler? and request "to not be hit because I'm wicked tired and I just could'nt keep my eye's open but my boat is hove to and if you honk I'll probably wake up but please don't because I'm sleepy". I know in the wheel house of an offshore tug we would see that and say" wow, check this dude out, and go around his/ her ass. Just putting it out there as possible way to communicate the situation. Most of the pencil pushing geeks that put together the colregs are sandy landlubbers any way's, in the industry there is movement to be governed by mariners and re-write a lot of the B.S. in the colregs, not only in modern english but to better serve the industry. Just say'n. ( and no the coast scouts, I mean coast gaurd, are not considerd mariners amongst mariners) but that's a different discussion.
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  #66  
Old 09-23-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Wow - what a great thread. I am sure some of my comments will irritate or surprise some, but here goes:

I am of the belief, right or wrong, that many of the rules are written with lawyers, insurance companies, and commercial vessel in mind. For example, and correct me if I am wrong for I have no interest in looking it back up, but technically, if you are anchored, are you not required to keep a 24 hour anchor watch? Really? Now, how many of you fellows sit up all night and watch your anchor? If you do, you are not cruising, I will tell you that. You find a good anchor spot, you drop the hook, you light your boat up (I use an anchor light and the landscape lights and my LED stern light and anything else to be seen within reason) and you go to bed. You get up a few times at night maybe to check your hook or to make sure your neighbor is still there, and that's it. But, technically, aren't we all required to maintain an anchor watch too if ourside a desg anchorage?

As far as single handing, the way I see it, if two boats are displaying the proper lighting, etc and hit each other, then neither was maintaining a proper watch and it is both faults. 50:50 if you hit eah other at sea. I am not talking coastal stuff or racing which is a whole other discussion. So in my opinion, the whole rule is moot from a legal standpoint. From a practical standpoint, if you single, you have to sleep. Get your sleep as best and as safe as you can. Do it in a way that minimizes your risk as best as possible for you and your vessel as the other vessel should do the same. If you get hit, well, you did your best and they did their best and you both ran out of luck.

Now, I do think, like it or not, that commercial vessels shoiuld live to a whole other standard than yachties. Sorry... I do. I think they should stand anchor watches and stand all night watches at sea. They are getting paid for it and they are a commercial vessel. That is the price of doing business and businesses should incorporate the cost of crew into their equation. Also, their potential to damage is significatlyy greater than us shmucks with a plastic boat and and sail. So yeah, I do think they should stand by the rules.

I am not saying I do not believe in the principle of the rules. I undersand why they are written. Where practical, it makes sense. However, for some it is not practical. But the law and insurance companies will never try to differentiate between them. They need someone to blame.

I am not belittling the laws. Given my firm stance on safety, others wil find my comments surprising. But as much as I appreciate a firm set of rules for seamanship, so do I believe in the right of the individual and the freedom of the single hander. Hey, if you have the crew or can get the crew to do 3-8's or 3-4's, good for you. It is safer for you and the other vessels. But some cannot. And for them, I keep a watch on my boat and give them a nod on their way by.

Also, when I make out of a large port, I often sail out many miles from the rhumb line then make my course. I am sure this is just make believe from me, but the way I see it, if I was a commercial captain, I would want to get to the next port as short a time as possible. So if I get off that line, I only have to worry about other vessels when close to port. That is my theory anyways... probably wrong but it makes me feel better!!

Brian

PS I rarely, RARELY see another boat at sea. In fact, when it happens, we are all grabbing the binocs like a movie star is walking by. Exceptions is close to ports and off the coast of San Diesgo which seemed to be a highway for commerical and military traffic.

PSS Is it just me, or is the deepest freaking sleep of your lives when at sea? Oh my ghosh, but about 12-18 hours out and I am in the deepest REM and dreams of my life. At the same time I am also more in-tune with every noise and creak and can tell by them when something is not right. Just me????? DOn't lie!! I'll tell you this: if they sold a maching that made like a sailboat at sea, I would buy it and live my life in bliss (at least until a woman's voice came on and said, "honey... your turn!")
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  #67  
Old 09-24-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruisingdad View Post

...PSS Is it just me, or is the deepest freaking sleep of your lives when at sea? Oh my ghosh, but about 12-18 hours out and I am in the deepest REM and dreams of my life. At the same time I am also more in-tune with every noise and creak and can tell by them when something is not right. Just me????? DOn't lie!! I'll tell you this: if they sold a maching that made like a sailboat at sea, I would buy it and live my life in bliss (at least until a woman's voice came on and said, "honey... your turn!")
Me too. I sleep like the dead when I have my wife or one of our kids at the helm or when anchored in a good holding area.
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Old 09-24-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
Here is a judge's opinion for you.

Give it a careful read.

FindACase™ | GRANHOLM v. THE VESSEL TFL EXPRESS
Well, the judge suggests that if Granholm had gone below to sleep during the day, then he would not have been negligent:

Quote:
In the case at bar, Granholm's decision to go below during the nighttime was negligent. His own testimony reflects an awareness that this was so. I have previously quoted the relevant portion; Granholm said that "as a rule I made it a habit to take my resting periods during daytime and when the conditions were such that I could afford having some rest." The reasons are obvious. At night a sailboat, even displaying the proper lights, is not nearly as visible as she is in the daytime, when underway under sail. Granholm was sailing near a recognized transatlantic route for large vessels. He should have adhered to his own practice and rested only during the daytime. It may seem unfeeling to condemn single handed transatlantic sailors for sleeping at night. But they pursue this hazardous avocation voluntarily, and are not exempt from the requirements of prudent seamanship.
(Emphasis added.)
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Old 09-24-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruisingdad View Post

Now, I do think, like it or not, that commercial vessels shoiuld live to a whole other standard than yachties. Sorry... I do. I think they should stand anchor watches and stand all night watches at sea. They are getting paid for it and they are a commercial vessel. That is the price of doing business and businesses should incorporate the cost of crew into their equation. Also, their potential to damage is significatlyy greater than us shmucks with a plastic boat and and sail. So yeah, I do think they should stand by the rules.
Sorry, but I must strenuously disagree...

What rules should yachtsmen be excused from, simply because they choose to partake in a purely RECREATIONAL endeavor on the world's oceans, CHOOSING to sail short or singlehanded? Should private pilots likewise have similar courtesies granted to them, because their tiny Pipers or Cessnas are more subject to turbulence, thus making the delicate constitutions of their pilots more susceptible to airsickness? (grin)

I can only imagine the sort of scorn with which most professional mariners would greet such a plea for special status... Especially, in an age where they are being expected to pluck distressed yachties from their plastic toys with ever-increasing frequency... Not to mention, where some are demanding (as was seen here in the Loss of TRIUMPH thread) that merchant vessels participating in the AMVER program need to get their act together, and undergo far more rigorous training in order to properly do so...

Their bemusement would likely pale in comparison, however, to that of many of my all-time voyaging heroes - people like the Smeetons, Hiscocks, or Roths, who epitomized self-sufficiency and the acceptance of personal responsibility for their choices, embraced the risks of putting to sea on a small boat, and indeed would have been embarrassed to have such special consideration requested on their behalf...

Last edited by JonEisberg; 09-24-2012 at 11:10 AM.
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Old 09-24-2012
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Re: Is sleeping OK?

I don't think us solo dudes should have speacial rules. As a Merchant Marine I can tell you first hand we hate recreational boaters, we think they are all "no nuth'ns" But belive me as rec. boater you are not subject to scrutiny that we are nor are you getting paid several hundred dollars plus a day to be out there. As a rec. boater I know the mind set of the wheel house and I do everything I can to stay visible. If there was a light config. or day shape to tell me while on watch that the vessel I see is single handing. I would take that into consideration when I make my decsions as watch officer. It's just a communication technique. knowledege is power. I like looking out at lights and knowing, Oh, that guy has a mile of cable behind him, or that guy is fishing, or that guy is sailing, or that guy is alone. There is also a law of the sea as sailors that trumps COLREGS that demands respect amongst our selves, to look out for eachother, assist when we can. What's that saying " A HERO IS SOMEONE WHO DOES WHAT THEY CAN" Most of these commercial guy's are allright and ironically dream of retiring to a sailing or trawler yacht some day, and look enviously at the cruising boats wishing they were'nt at work. It's all about visibilty, and communicating what you are up to, that's all they want to know when they see you out there.
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