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Outbound right of way narrow channel
junior
Posted: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 9:23 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Each year I navigate a very narrow channel between two islands . This is a busy channel with much small and large yacht traffic , unpredictable wind driven 2 to 4 knot current, 5 meters deep mid channel, 25 meters wide and perhaps three quarters of a mile long with a blind dogleg in the channel. I am just over 4 meters deep and must stay center channel to keep off the shoulders. It is not possible to pass port to port. Each year I navigate thru this channel a dozen times and face many stressful days. As I understand it...OUTBOUND Vessels have the right away in a narrow channel. Outbound , defined by the direction of the Bouyage . My standard procedure is One long blast and hail all ships on 16 before entering the channel , then when In sight of another vessel 5 blasts and much panic on the VHF. I never receive right away from inbound Mega yachts as outbound vessel and several times I have had to perform a full back down maneuver, reversing out of the channel into deep water while onlooking Mega yacht charter guests wave and take pictures of the panic. . What is the Rule.
stockydale
Posted: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 12:49 PM
Joined: 12/05/2008
Posts: 8


Correct me if I'm wrong, but Rule 9 of the COLREGS never mentions anything regarding incoming or outgoing having priority over the other. However "special rules" (Rule 1, b) may have been applied by the local authority, and if so, these should be found in the Sailing Directions.
junior
Posted: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 2:31 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


I have the sailing directions and local exceptions are made for several channels along the coast. This passage is not mentioned , possible because its not possible for commercial traffic to navigate in this area. . Your correct that rule 9 make no inbound outbound distinction only that " a vessel which was required not to impede the passage of another vessel should take early action to allow sufficient sea room for the safe passage of the other vessel " Ingrained into my thick head and from years of my father giving me five fingers upside the head Ive always adopted Inland Navigation rules to stay clear of outbound vessels, be it entering a marina , small bay, narrow channel and maintaining that when in doubt downbound follows the direction of bouyage. Rule 14(a) states "a power-driven vessel operating in narrow channels or fairways on the Great Lakes, Western Rivers, or waters specified by the Secretary, and proceeding downbound with a following current shall have the right-of-way over an upbound vessel, shall propose the manner and place of passage, and shall initiate the maneuvering signals prescribed by Rule 34(a)(i), as appropriate. The vessel proceeding upbound against the current shall hold as necessary to permit safe passingto suit the situation. " I understand these are domestic inland rules. No mention is made in the national sailing directions of any specific local variation to COLREGS for this passage. Its a dangerous place in high season , I must remember to inquire and clarify with the authorities next time Im there. The narrow channel in question is the North South inter island passage at the center of the picture. 500 yachts per day will pass in high season. http://img210.imageshack.us/img210/7343/narrowchannel.jpg
JT
Posted: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 4:10 PM
Joined: 03/12/2009
Posts: 5


What is the depth for the rest of the 25m width? as if thats navigable by the other boats that force you backwards would you not then be classed as a vessel which is constrained by her draught? just a thought.


Pascal
Posted: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 10:06 PM
Joined: 23/11/2008
Posts: 42


"As I understand it...OUTBOUND Vessels have the right away in a narrow channel."

where did you find that in the COLREGS?

where in the world is this channel located? 

a securité call on 16 describing your vessel and problem before entering the channel should be enough to make other guys stay clear...

reyx
Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2010 9:59 AM
Joined: 30/07/2009
Posts: 4


Why not 3 red or a cylinder. Your father was right in "good seamanship". Maby a flare gun with the horn,,,would give them a good scare, or more reasons for taking pictures..In the North sea the seismic guys shoot at you with flare guns.
rodsteel
Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2010 6:55 PM
Joined: 25/06/2009
Posts: 277


Pascal wrote:

where in the world is this channel located? 


Pascal,

 

It is off the Croatian coast. If you Google "map Zadar Croatia" and go directly south you will hit the Island of Katina. There seem to be two East-West channels (North and South) of the island - not sure which one Junior is describing.

 

Rod


junior
Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2010 8:17 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


I think many seamanship details are not spelled out in rules...The outbound vessel for instance. Beware because in many place in the world like the River Elbe its the law printed out in big notations on the chart. Things like when a ship wants to overtake you...you slow down to make it happen fast so the ships watch can get back to real life and not get locked into a 5 mile horse race. Id personally like to get to the bottom of this narrow channel priority status in Mala Provesa but until I do...I'm the guy blowing his horn yelling on the VHF.... Funny you mention Seismic survey vessels. Last November I monitored one of the most comical VHF, bridge to bridges Ive ever heard. Sailing at night thru the Straits of Otranto I checked in with VTS and they alerted me of the Seismic survey ship "OCEAN ANGLER" working to my south and instructed me to monitor VHF 16. All night long I'm listening as Ocean Angler hails ships on 16 notifying them that they are dragging several kilometers of seismic gear on course whatever, speed whatever and to pass a minimum of 3 miles astern. Early in the morning I hear Ocean Angler come on 16 again calling "the vessel in position "...no answer. again and again, "vessel in position" After many tries an Italian yacht answers back. Ocean Angler repeats the warning to stand clear and the yacht replies ...NO ! !!. The Ocean Angler again patiently repeats the full warning and the yacht again answers back... "NO, I'm Italian, I'm going home, I'm not changing course,I'm heading for Brindisi, I am Italian !! ". Once again Ocean Angler calls , once again the yacht replies "NO...Ive got my wife and guests waiting on the dock, I'm running late and I'm wont alter course, I am Italian returning to Italy ". Ocean Angler hails its guard boat, the guard boat hails the yacht on 16 then charges the yacht with high power searchlights and the next thing I hear is the yacht calling Brindisi coast guard in frantic Italian reporting a ship trying to run them down !!!!!!!... A Very entertaining watch.... Perhaps there should be a thread on the funniest VHF conversations overheard on night watch.
Pascal
Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2010 8:36 PM
Joined: 23/11/2008
Posts: 42


well then Western rivers are irrelevant...  international rules apply under which if one vessels is CBD they need to show the proper day shapes/lights.

if the channel is narrow and the water is too shallow outside for the other vessel to leave the channel, one of them will need to let the other go thru... seems like the vessel who broadcast a securité call first prior to committing to the channel should expect the other guys to wait till he's clear.

interesting scenario.

rodsteel
Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2010 10:42 PM
Joined: 25/06/2009
Posts: 277


Junior,

 

This seems to be the North channel

 

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/17381373

 

Is the Southern channel any deeper and wider?

 

Rod


junior
Posted: Thursday, January 28, 2010 7:07 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Mala Proversa is the North channel and is dredged to 5 meters, the pilot book states the channel is 4 meters deep and 15 meters wide. I always observe 5 meters during passage.. Vela Proversa is the south channel. The controlling depth in Veli Proversa according to my Pilot is 3 meters...Ive never tried it...visually water colour doesn't look good
Andrew
Posted: Thursday, January 28, 2010 11:03 PM
Joined: 01/10/2009
Posts: 2


It seems to me that the only rule that applies is the general prudential rule. However I also, would be making a securite call and hoping for some common sense   from all parties.

Henning
Posted: Friday, January 29, 2010 11:53 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1049


junior wrote:
 Each year I navigate thru this channel a dozen times and face many stressful days. As I understand it...OUTBOUND Vessels have the right away in a narrow channel. Outbound , defined by the direction of the Bouyage . My standard procedure is One long blast and hail all ships on 16 before entering the channel , then when In sight of another vessel 5 blasts and much panic on the VHF. I never receive right away from inbound Mega yachts as outbound vessel and several times I have had to perform a full back down maneuver, reversing out of the channel into deep water while onlooking Mega yacht charter guests wave and take pictures of the panic. . What is the Rule.
 
No rule exists in your operational area as you interpret it.
 
My question is, if you want to meet them STBD to STBD, why are you giving them 5 instead of 2? Telling me I'm standing into danger does nothing to tell me that you do not want the default port to port meeting.


junior
Posted: Friday, January 29, 2010 3:01 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Henning I want them to not enter the channel... 5 blast KEEP CLEAR....Danger... It is not possible to pass in the channel..it is 15meters wide
14Freedom
Posted: Friday, January 29, 2010 9:44 PM
Joined: 16/04/2009
Posts: 155


Hmmm...15 meters is 49.2 feet. Are you running a cat? Of couse, no one want to "edge" the channel but you already got the best advice; run a securite', call on 16 and proceed when clear, send the tender ahead to see/communicate intentions/scout what's there.
You can always explain to owners/guests when wanting to use this channel that you should be clear by X hour, anchor or standby off and use the tender...since it's so busy.
ATB-
The Slacker

Cap'n C
Posted: Saturday, January 30, 2010 6:56 PM
Joined: 29/04/2009
Posts: 37


No, no Junior! 5 short blasts does not mean "danger-keep away",  it simply means "your movements are not understood"! Rule 34 (d). A prolonged blast can be used if you are coming round the bend and do not see through to the other side because of an obstruction. Rule 9 can also apply if the oncoming schmuck is less than 20m, same even for WAFI's. Some countries (dunno if Croatia have done so) give extra national rules from 40 upwards. Nordic countries use as rule 40 a prolonged blast (more than 10 secs) when entering narrow channels. Custom is also to shout a securite on ch16 5-10 mins before you enter the narrows. The main thing is though, to attract attention to avoid collission, and the colregs state that this is your obligation by any means possible, ie long blast, shortblasts etc, whatever it takes to avoid collision. I'd go for securite first, then a long blast (ocean steamer style!) shortly before entering the narrows. If the channel is only 15m wide and you run a sizable yacht and you enter it first, then others should wait for you, inbound or outbound, allthough good sheamanship applies. If another sisable yacht is about to enter at the same time, I would let him slink by first if I had enough space to stop and hover a bit. I wouldn't play chicken, that's is not kosher at sea. If the current is strong, the one going against should be the one to give the right of way. If the oncomer is some form of ferry on its normal route, you yield. Ferries seem to go on rails and do not lightly deviate from their track, colregs or not!

junior
Posted: Saturday, January 30, 2010 8:19 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Im a simple guy and never in a hurry so I give way to all commercial craft whatever size or status !!!! As far as ONE blast , you are correct when the vessel is not in sight... but when I see your vessel and in this narrow passage I may see 10 vessels at a distance herding up ready to enter, then I assume this rule applies (d) When vessels in sight of one another are approaching each other and from any cause either vessel fails to understand the intentions or actions of the other, or is in doubt whether sufficient action is being taken by the other to avoid collision, the vessel in doubt shall immediately indicate such doubt by giving at least five short and rapid blasts on the whistle. Such signal may be supplemented by a light signal of at least five short and rapid flashes..... Perhaps for next year I contact one of these anti piracy security guys , pick up a SONIC CANNON and use it to sound signal...One blast or Five...depending on how hot my head is..............
aeronautic1
Posted: Saturday, January 30, 2010 8:45 PM
Joined: 25/07/2008
Posts: 32


Just grip it and rip it!


david
Posted: Sunday, January 31, 2010 8:12 PM
Joined: 03/01/2010
Posts: 2


No Rule. But against current should hold back. This is waaaaay more important than direction of bouyage. Otherwise "If you ain't been aground, you ain't been around" may apply. Not every boat handles as well as yours.

14Freedom
Posted: Monday, February 1, 2010 4:29 AM
Joined: 16/04/2009
Posts: 155


Ever pass through Woods Hole? Hadley's Harbor? Osterville? Talk about TIGHT, with commercial/yacht traffic. Use YOUR judgement and proceed Junior. Never sailed in your neck of the woods but try old Cape Cod in the summer.
ATB-
The Slacker

Anonymous
Posted: Monday, February 1, 2010 11:41 PM
No one has 'right of way' as such according to the rules but whoever is making way against the current should wait after you've given a sound signal and had a reply as they can more easily maintain steerage... not much more you can do than what you've been doing...
Henning
Posted: Wednesday, February 3, 2010 6:09 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1049


"Henning I want them to not enter the channel... 5 blast KEEP CLEAR....Danger... It is not possible to pass in the channel..it is 15meters wide"

 Well, I don't know what your boats dimensions are, but with 14' of draft I'm gonna guess that you're about 23' on the beam, 25 maximum. lets say you keep the keel in the middle of a 75' channel of proper depth in the middle of the channel (though I would probably be about 2/3rds way on the green side of the pictured channel in the above link), that'll leave plenty of room for someone of lesser draft to come through on the red side. If you're the first in the channel, just hold your line, if they tag a prop or you, it's on them. You do have a cylinder in the rigging right?  Passing wiyth inches to spare is still a clear pass. If you like that, come on over to Fourchon where we operate big boats like that all day long. You could also go out under sail.... There isn't much you can do to dissuade them unless you do like I used to do to shrimpers if they came to close to dragging up my anchors when I was running a 4 point boat and land a 25mm practice flair on their deck.
junior
Posted: Wednesday, February 3, 2010 1:15 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


It would be wise to fly a dayshape, but I don't . If they wont answer my VHF hail nor my horn blast then I doubt they will be aware of my dayshape. Never the less In future I will heed your advice and fly the dayshape as an additional line of defense for when I'm brought before the port authorities on assault charges.. " Honest Sir !!! the winch handle that smashed the yachts window and tipped over Lord Leadbottoms Gin and tonic flew out of its pocket all by itself...it was a freak accident... promise it will never happen again. " This passage requires a traffic scheme . A miniaturized version of the Jadrija signal station on the Dvainka passage requiring vessels over 50 GT to respect the traffic flow before entering the Sv. Ante channel. http://static.panoramio.com/photos/original/5977.jpg As far as passing another boat in the channel. I consider it poor behavior to intimidate another vessel with a white knuckle crossing. If I see Henning maneuvering his vessel in the harbour I instinctively stand outside and wait for the harbour to clear. Regardless of whether it is technically possible to enter. It makes life civilized, easy. I expect the same from other vessels. Instead of Outbound privilege call it the universal LAW of Cold Beer. Difficult to enjoy a beer at the end of the day with fellow mariners who have no manners. By the way..... Two hours ago the ferry was departing port as a 25 boat fleet of youngsters in optimist dingies from the local sailing club milled around the entrance....I heard 5 blasts from the ferry informing these little fellows to stand clear and mind their manners. .
 
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