Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: New Orleans
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Re: Give way when hoisting the main?
It isn't explicit in the Colregs, and I've heard it argued both ways.
My view, and what I teach my sailing students (and I got the local Coast Guard COTP and his Deputy to concur at an industry lunch since I wanted to know their view since they're the enforcers) is if you have it running but haven't yet put it in gear while you still sail, or take in sail, or charge your battery, means you are NOT a motorboat under the rules, since you're not "propelled".
Now, if I put her in gear, maneuver, then knock it back in neutral for reasons of hull speed, of course I'm a motorboat, just adjusting speed by way of the shift rather than throttle. And I hate to keep saying "day shape" but if you are propelled by both motor and sail, there's a day shape for that! And no one has it, nor do most even know about it (and it's not required in Inland waters if you're under 12 meters long). But in a perfect world, you'd use it when you put her in gear, but not when you fired up the motor in neutral at the end of a sail to "be ready just in case" while you decide to be a cowboy and sail the jetties and harbor.
I know reasonable minds differ on this, but "neutral but haven't used or put it in gear yet, and may never do so if the wind holds and I can sail into the slip" is sailing, not motoring, for purposes of who's the stand-on and give-way vessel).
Last edited by nolatom; 07-30-2013 at 06:34 PM.