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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > WTH is up w/ the spotlight?
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Thread: WTH is up w/ the spotlight? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
08-30-2013 01:17 AM
Bene505
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobGallagher View Post
Lighting up a vessel at night and blinding them is illegal. One might have to look up the various definitions of "embarrass". I know I did

Rule 36 - Signals to Attraction Attention

If necessary to attract the attention of another vessel, any vessel may make light or sound signals that cannot be mistaken for any signal authorized elsewhere in these Rules, or may direct the beam of her searchlight in the direction of the danger, in such a way as not to embarrass any vessel. Any light to attract the attention of another vessel shall be such that it cannot be mistaken for any aid to navigation. For the purpose of this Rule the use of high intensity intermittent or revolving lights, such as strobe lights, shall be avoided. [Intl]
And what if the danger is another boat spotlighting you? You certainly can't perform effectively when steadily blasted by light. If it is of long enough duration that it's starting to affect your safety, I say by all means spotlight the danger.

Regards,
Brad
08-29-2013 04:07 PM
sailordave
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

And something that folks don't always realize is having a really bright light on creates shadows that make it HARDER to see what might be lurking. Best light is dim ambient light that seeps into the shadows so you can sorta see.
Going into Lunenberg at night when the tide was out it was BLACK down below dock level. I mean you couldn't see spit! Very disconcerting. Fortunately it was not my boat and I was not the skipper.
08-29-2013 02:06 PM
bljones
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

Sometimes, spotlighters don't need any help with ruing their night vision. More than one i know has blinded himself by forgetting the proper order of spotlight operation.



Turn it around THEN turn it on... not vice versa.
08-29-2013 12:56 PM
JonEisberg
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coquina View Post
My dodger lines right up at eye level. I can sit and look under or stand and look over
Right where it should be, then :-)

I realize many of the boats I get on are configured for the proportions of the owner, of course... Still, I'm 6"5", and it's amazing how many dodgers I still cannot see over the top...

That's what folks need their autopilot remotes for, I suppose... :-)
08-29-2013 12:06 PM
Coquina
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

My dodger lines right up at eye level. I can sit and look under or stand and look over
08-29-2013 11:56 AM
JonEisberg
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coquina View Post
I wanted less light for BETTER vision, not those fsking "docking lights". Speaking of which, I have never - not ever - not in 4 different countries - sail or power - ever ONCE needed a light to approach a pier at night. Docking lights my a##
Can you tell I hate those things!
Yup, I couldn't agree more...

However, I have on occasion found it nice to have a bit of light available on a final approach to an unlit slip or pier... For such a purpose, I find a good foredeck light can be far more useful than anything else...

I have the large Series 40 Aqua Signal steaming/foredeck light on my boat, and love it. It's well worth the extra illumination, yet creates little loss of night vision as it's mounted forward of the mast... In a pinch, regular spreader lights can help a bit, but you'd better be wearing a baseball cap, and sometimes simply light up the boat too much, or make it impossible to see thru a dodger, etc...

Which brings me to my biggest gripe of all - namely, freakin' dodger and cockpit canvas creations that are virtually impossible to see over the top of... Amazing, how commonplace this setup is becoming on the boats I've been running lately, and how much it can degrade your visibility at night, or in thick weather... Having a dodger that one ALWAYS has to peer through from the helm is a recipe for disaster, how people live with some of these concoctions is completely beyond me, one can only presume they simply never sail after dark, or when it rains :-)


08-29-2013 11:35 AM
RobGallagher
WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

Lighting up a vessel at night and blinding them is illegal. One might have to look up the various definitions of "embarrass". I know I did

Rule 36 - Signals to Attraction Attention

If necessary to attract the attention of another vessel, any vessel may make light or sound signals that cannot be mistaken for any signal authorized elsewhere in these Rules, or may direct the beam of her searchlight in the direction of the danger, in such a way as not to embarrass any vessel. Any light to attract the attention of another vessel shall be such that it cannot be mistaken for any aid to navigation. For the purpose of this Rule the use of high intensity intermittent or revolving lights, such as strobe lights, shall be avoided. [Intl]
08-29-2013 10:40 AM
Coquina
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

We once ran up the Chester River at 45 knots and had dinner in Chestertown. We lingered over-long and it was a cloudy dark moonless night when we left again. The banks of the river are pitch-black farmland and forest. Many of the navaids are unlit as well.'

Instead of playing spotlight commando and blinding ourselves, we went home at 6 knots
08-29-2013 09:13 AM
knuterikt
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

Quote:
Originally Posted by capta View Post
Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't it say something in the colregs about SLOWING DOWN in reduced visibility? Isn't the dark considered "reduced visibility"? Especially in a confined, busy channel.
Any power boater doing even 20k in someplace like the Chesapeake is kinda risking their own life and the lives of others out there? Where are the LEO's when they are needed?
On the other hand, when I was much younger and not such a nice (wise) person, I would reciprocate as some have mentioned above. Once it WAS a LEO and only a whole lot of humble pie kept me from being arrested, because it is definitely illegal to shine a light intentionally at another boat as reciprocation for their actions.
You are right, the relevant rules are..
Quote:
Rule 6 - Safe Speed

Every vessel shall at all times proceed at a safe speed so that she can take proper and effective action to avoid collision and be stopped within a distance appropriate to the prevailing circumstances and conditions.

In determining a safe speed the following factors shall be among those taken into account:
(a) By all vessels:

(i) The state of visibility;
(ii) The traffic density including concentrations of fishing vessels or any other vessels;
(iii) The manageability of the vessel with special reference to stopping distance and turning ability in the prevailing conditions;
(iv) At night, the presence of background light such as from shore lights or from back scatter from her own lights;
(v) The state of wind, sea and current, and the proximity of navigational hazards;
(vi) The draft in relation to the available depth of water.


Quote:
PART C - LIGHTS AND SHAPES
Rule 20 - Application

(a) Rules in this part shall be complied with in all weathers.

(b) The Rules concerning lights shall be complied with from sunset to sunrise, and during such times no other lights shall be exhibited, except such lights which cannot be mistaken for the lights specified in these Rules or do not impair their visibility or distinctive character, or interfere with the keeping of a proper look-out.

(c) The lights prescribed by these Rules shall, if carried, also be exhibited from sunrise to sunset in restricted visibility and may be exhibited in all other circumstances when it is deemed necessary.

(d) The Rules concerning shapes shall be complied with by day.

(e) The lights and shapes specified in these Rules shall comply with the provisions of Annex I [to these Regulations | of these Rules].
Source Navigation Rules Online
08-29-2013 09:05 AM
JonEisberg
Re: WTH is up w/ the spotlight?

Quote:
Originally Posted by capta View Post
Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't it say something in the colregs about SLOWING DOWN in reduced visibility? Isn't the dark considered "reduced visibility"? Especially in a confined, busy channel.
Any power boater doing even 20k in someplace like the Chesapeake is kinda risking their own life and the lives of others out there? Where are the LEO's when they are needed?
Interestingly, at least according to the folks in Florida who've drawn up the regs applying to Manatee Zones (the 'contribution' of boating industry lobbyists is apparent, here), full darkness apparently does not constitute much of an impediment to visibility...

Yeah, this modest speed reduction is all that is necessary, to be able to spot manatees at night :-)





Florida's Manatee Zones feature some of the dumbest regulations you'll ever see posted anywhere... Most have nothing to do with manatees, of course, but everything to do with waterfront real estate... Amazing how often new Manatee Zones crop up in areas of new development, one has to presume manatees are highly attracted to waters bordered by pretentious McMansions...

Minimum Wake enforced during the daytime, but after dark you're good to go...





I certainly agree with your bigger point - any boater who requires the continuous use or a searchlight to identify other vessels, judge distances, etc., is running at an excessive speed to begin with...
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