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Learning the HARD way...
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Discussion Starter #1
I was sailing on my boat with a friend and mooring neighbor yesterday. He has been sailing, and owned boats for over 30 years, but I don't know if he has ever taken any instruction. He was at the helm, and I was handling the sheets. While were approaching the mark where I intended to turn the boat around and head back, we were on starboard tack and close hauled. We encountered the local sailing school of eight Optis full of kids having a great time. They were all on a broad reach, port tack. He seemed to have a different opinion about which boat was stand on and which was give way.

We talked about this afterward, and I presented him with a little of my instruction from ASA 101.

He shared the following with me;
In old editions of the rules of the road, it is clearly stated that even in non-racing situations, the boat heading upwind has the right-of-way over a boat heading downwind, regardless of the tack of either boat.
:eek:

I have only been sailing since 1971, and only been licensed since 2013, so I don't claim to know the history of COLREGS. I do remember when buoys were red and black. Can anyone from SailNet support my friend's account of the historical COLREGS?

FWIW I do NOT intend to revisit this with him, and am not looking to embarrass him. I only want to understand.

Also, I have said many times before that the rules of the road work well only if everyone is playing by the same rules. Be forewarned.
 

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Super Moderator
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Current ColRegs were written in 1972. So if hes been boating for 30 years, the current ColRegs should have been around for almost 20 years prior to that.
 

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Like your sailing friend when I first started sailing in the early seventies there were black and red channel markers. I remember them switching the early 80s . The old timers predicted mass confusion with people running into shoals.
The study showed the green was more readily seen than the black.
 

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Master Mariner
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I mistook the conning tower of a sub just outside Pearl for a black buoy once. We got way too close to one another and I heard later the captain got into trouble over the incident. Green is better. lol
 

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I passed my New York State Junior Boat operator license in 1963. Starboard always was the stand on vessel even back then no matter what point of sail or who is to leeward (although it was called 'right of way' vessel back then.) The only exception to that was the case where one vessel was an overtaking vessel.

Now then, the racing rules have changed a lot of times in my lifetime, particularly at mark roundings. But even in the racing rules, a port tack leeward boat never had the right of way over a windward boat on starboard except at a mark rounding or obstacle and only under some versions of the rule.

I will tell you that I have sailed with people who insist that the leeward boat has the right away in all cases. I don't know why they believe that except that I was taught that as a courtesy, if there was room to do so without endangering either boat, the polite thing was to allow the leeward boat room to pass without altering their course and to do so by sharply altering course in an unambiguous manner to let the other boat know your intent.

Jeff
 

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Pretty sure you were stand on. Don't know, if I'd try to assert that privilege over a bunch of kids in bathtubs. Judgement call.
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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Discussion Starter #7
RULE 12 Sailing Vessels
(a) When two sailing vessels are approaching one another, so as to involve risk of collision, one of them shall keep out of the way of the other as follows:
(i) when each has the wind on a different side, the vessel which has the wind on the port side shall keep out of the way of the other;​
(ii) when both have the wind on the same side, the vessel which is to windward shall keep out of the way of the vessel which is to leeward; and​
(iii) if a vessel with the wind on the port side sees a vessel to windward and cannot determine with certainty whether the other vessel has the wind on the port or on the starboard side, she shall keep out of the way of the other.​
(b) For the purpose of this Rule the windward side shall be deemed to be the side opposite to that on which the mainsail is carried or, in the case of a square-rigged vessel, the side opposite to that on which the largest foreand-aft sail is carried.
 

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Pretty sure you were stand on. Don't know, if I'd try to assert that privilege over a bunch of kids in bathtubs. Judgement call.
I wouldn't sail into a group of kids in dinghies for any reason. There is a very active youth sailing program in Admiralty Bay, Bequia, so the issue comes up quite frequently.
 
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Learning the HARD way...
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Discussion Starter #10
FWIW - The group of kids were in a supervised racing program. The coach was in a RIB to starboard, and we never approached to within 100 yards. I was not really concerned about them, but I WAS concerned about the possible actions of the guy at the helm.

The rules work best when we are all playing by the same ones.
 

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Because of the large number of races in Annapolis, it isn’t always easy to circle around the. For their safety and yours it’s important to know the “ rules of the road” if entering or transiting an area a race is ongoing. The rules also apply to the racers with regards to your course also. We try to stay out of their way.
 

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Because of the large number of races in Annapolis, it isn’t always easy to circle around the. For their safety and yours it’s important to know the “ rules of the road” if entering or transiting an area a race is ongoing. The rules also apply to the racers with regards to your course also. We try to stay out of their way.
I have no quandary sailing through a group of adults racing sail boats, after all they are just playing, but as I said I'll steer clear, even stop or turn around to avoid children on the water in small boats.
 

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It's not as easy to find a copy of the '48 ColRegs, but here you go:

Rule 17
When two sailing vessels are approaching one another, so as to involve risk of collision, one of them shall keep out of the way of the other, as follows :–
(a) A vessel which is running free shall keep out of the way of a vessel which is close-hauled.​
(b) A vessel which is close-hauled on the port tack shall keep out of the way of a vessel which is close-hauled on the starboard tack.​
(c) When both are running free, with the wind on different sides, the vessel which has the wind on the port side shall keep out of the way of the other.​
(d) When both are running free, with the wind on the same side, the vessel which is to windward shall keep out of the way of the vessel which is to leeward.​
(e) A vessel which has the wind aft shall keep out of the way of the other vessel.​

I do find it quite odd that someone wouldn't have picked up the change; the '72 rules have been around for a short while now.
 

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bell ringer
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Rules? What rules are you talking about? The boat that can survive the crash with the least damage has the right of way! So .................................. move *****, get your tiny boat outta my way!
 

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Starboard has right of way over port tack, windward boat on same tack keeps clear, overtaking boat keeps clear.
But let’s face it, there is absolutely no shortage of people hanging onto tillers out there who have no idea there even are rules. Every yacht club has several that everyone else simply avoids to preserve life, limb and vessel.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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Starboard has right of way over port tack, windward boat on same tack keeps clear, overtaking boat keeps clear.
But let’s face it, there is absolutely no shortage of people hanging onto tillers out who have no idea there even are rules. Every yacht club has several that everyone else simply avoids to preserve life, limb and vessel.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
Sadly, most states consider their boating educational courses more as a revenue stream than a means to truly educate the public on safety on the water. I believe even a USCG 100 ton master would have difficulty passing an EU pleasure boating certification course from what I've heard.
 

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Our state makes no money on boating educational courses. They think it is really important that everyone know how long to run a blower to get gasoline fumes out of the bilge, how often their trailer registration has to be renewed, what lights their trailer needs to show, how many lifejackets they need to have aboard and that you need to keep clear of boats coming from your right. Not much about sailing.
 

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"(a) A vessel which is running free " Ma I correct this means sailing downwind?
 

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