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post #11 of 21 Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Re: The reality of responsibility

capta-
"and having the jet skiers play "chicken" with the barge"
I kinda believe in live and let live, but when the *holes start to endanger themselves and put me into the mix--I grab the mic and call the USCG immediately.
The first time I was heading up the East River and two jetskis were playing like porpoises under the bow, where I couldn't even SEE them. The USCG still had their base at Governor's Island and it took about three minutes before a 44(?) came roaring up with all hands on deck, including manning the machine gun. (Which I thought was not a bright idea, given that machine gunning Manhattan near the UN would probably not impress anyone on the evening news.)
But, they came, the jet skis disappeared, I have no idea if they were ever caught.

The second time we were anchored off Pier 25 on the Hudson. That's inside the "bulkhead line" and the river bottom is privately owned land. We'd paid the owner to anchor out there for the 4th of July fireworks and naval parade. And the bottom drops off pretty sharply once it crosses the bulkhead line into the river proper. Add that to the reversing current on the Hudson (which is a tidal estuary down there) and we needed some good scope to stay hooked in. Of course by twilight all sorts of craft are coming in to anchor, guaranteed without permission. And one small party boat drops their hook just about right on top of ours. Refuses to move, doesn't understand if he's fouled us, we're both going to drift, we really do use that much scope. About a half hour later the Coasties come around in a RIB looking for things like too much open booze. I waved 'em down, explained we had some belligerent drops fouling our anchor and yes, we had permission from the owners to be anchored here--they didn't. Could they maybe explain the situation to the other boat?
Twenty minutes later, other boat gone. Everyone else (us and the Coasties) all happy.

It wasn't just Governor's Island, I've found the USCG in general to be almost universally helpful and eager to step in BEFORE there's any injury. Much less paperwork to fill out that way. I'm not shy to call 'em, they can figure out what to do after that.
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post #12 of 21 Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Re: The reality of responsibility

OMG hellosailor, as soon as I saw my home waters in your post I was sure you were going to have some horror story of ignorance about one of my fellow sailing club members. (I'll admit, I've seen a few cringey things from them.) Anyway, my hat's off to you for operating commercial vessels in NY waters, it's a pretty hectic place.
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post #13 of 21 Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Re: The reality of responsibility

Thanks but these were just pleasurecraft.

Spend enough time in the upper harbor and around the Battery, especially when the Governor's Island ferry ran regularly as well as the SI ferry, and then add in the morons in the high speed cat ferries from NJ who thought THEY had supreme right of way because they were faster....even on a peaceful day you really need eyes in the back of your head, and that's just dealing with routine traffic.

When the drunks and yoyos come out...My zen master reminds me that carrying a canon on board would be simpler, but the weight on the bow would make the boat hobbyhorse, so it is more practical to call the USCG.
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Re: The reality of responsibility

Reminds me of one of my first assignments as a newly minted Coast Guard officer in summer 1976. I can't remember all the details but out on Long Island there was a tank farm at the head of an inlet (something creek). Oil tankers were coming and going on a routine basis. On the same inlet was a rather popular fishing station. People would rent boats and fish in the creek and had a really bad habit of anchoring or drifting in the channel while fishing. Of course this led to conflict because the ships could not maneuver outside the narrow channel, and when leaving on an outgoing tide had everything they could do just to maintain control. So having been clued into this by the local Coast Guard station I was told to write up an article for release as a public service announcement about the danger the fishermen were creating by blocking the channel. I titled it David and Goliath, but concluded that in this case Goliath would win. It got published in the NY Times and several of the local publications on LINY and in some boating mags. Didn't make much difference, wasn't long after that some idiot got run down by a tanker on an outgoing tide. Fortunately the only casualty was the boat. Things settled down for a while.
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Re: The reality of responsibility

From the COLREGS:
"A vessel of less than 20 meters in length or a sailing vessel shall not impede the passage of a vessel which can safely navigate only within a narrow channel or fairway." They also say you should do everything possible to avoid a close quarters situation or collision. That's good, clear advice.

There's usually time to avoid inattentive pleasure vessels and I always give plenty of room to big commercial vessels.

I learned to sail on the Delaware River with a lot of commercial traffic and I vividly remember how FAST a tug doing 20 knots would close the distance on my little 22 footer doing 4-5 knots -- not to mention the size of their wakes. There's just no reason to mess with those guys.

Now how many boaters have actually received on the water training and know the rules of the road -- well that's a whole other conversation...

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Re: The reality of responsibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimMcGee View Post
From the COLREGS:
"A vessel of less than 20 meters in length or a sailing vessel shall not impede the passage of a vessel which can safely navigate only within a narrow channel or fairway." They also say you should do everything possible to avoid a close quarters situation or collision. That's good, clear advice.
Nowhere in Colregs does it say a ship can run down a transgresser.


.

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Re: The reality of responsibility

The whole thread that the mariner originally wrote is the absolute epitome of diplomacy and trying to turn an almost life altering mistake by the sailor into a learning experience. I commended him on his restraint.
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post #18 of 21 Old 1 Week Ago
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Re: The reality of responsibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimMcGee View Post
From the COLREGS:
"A vessel of less than 20 meters in length or a sailing vessel shall not impede the passage of a vessel which can safely navigate only within a narrow channel or fairway." They also say you should do everything possible to avoid a close quarters situation or collision. That's good, clear advice.

There's usually time to avoid inattentive pleasure vessels and I always give plenty of room to big commercial vessels.

I learned to sail on the Delaware River with a lot of commercial traffic and I vividly remember how FAST a tug doing 20 knots would close the distance on my little 22 footer doing 4-5 knots -- not to mention the size of their wakes. There's just no reason to mess with those guys.

Now how many boaters have actually received on the water training and know the rules of the road -- well that's a whole other conversation...
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
Nowhere in Colregs does it say a ship can run down a transgresser.
.
Mark, I'm not sure how you got that from my post.

I try to give commercial traffic lots room in channels, and folks who haven't sailed in close proximity to tugs and commercial ships can be surprised by how fast they move and the size of their wakes.

I've seen a LOT of pleasure boats on the river cross the channel too close for comfort with oncoming traffic.
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post #19 of 21 Old 1 Week Ago Thread Starter
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Re: The reality of responsibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimMcGee View Post
Mark, I'm not sure how you got that from my post.

I try to give commercial traffic lots room in channels, and folks who haven't sailed in close proximity to tugs and commercial ships can be surprised by how fast they move and the size of their wakes.

I've seen a LOT of pleasure boats on the river cross the channel too close for comfort with oncoming traffic.
In my opinion, it all comes back to Darwin's rule. If someone is so ignorant as to assume a 900-foot ship traveling at 4 knots, which is the usual speed in a confined channel, could actually do anything to avoid any vessel which it's captain puts in harm's way, then we should hope he is solo sailing and that this incident will shuffle him off this mortal coil before he takes others with him in a traffic incident or such.
No amount of laws or colregs can fix stupid!
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Re: The reality of responsibility

This reminds me of the old tombstone adage....
" I was right"
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