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Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: warren460] #116189
01/08/2017 12:47 AM
01/08/2017 12:47 AM
Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 304
Rockford, Michigan
aarpskier Offline
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Rockford, Michigan
PSOD: Apologies for hi-jacking your thread.

The International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea ("COLREGS"), published by the International Maritime Organization, set out navigation rules to prevent collisions between two or more vessels. A dinghy under power is a "vessel." These regulations have been adopted by treaty by virtually every nation, including Great Britain and by extension the BVI.

Part C, Lights & Shapes, states in paragraph 20 that the "[r]ules concerning lights apply from sunset to sunrise, in conditions of restricted visibility and in all other circumstances when it is deemed necessary." Paragraph 23 states, in pertinent part, that a power-driven vessel underway less than 23.0 ft in length, whose maximum speed does not exceed 7 knots (8 mph), must be capable of showing a white light. Unlike the US and all 50 states, I am not aware of any BVI-specific modifications to the COLREGS.

So, assuming your dinghy is not 23 feet or longer, or your shorter dinghy is traveling at 7 knots or less, you are technically legal operating at night if you have a flashlight on board capable of being turned on to show a white light.

(Note: That is not the case in the USVI, where a dinghy underway at night must actually display red and greed sidelights visible for at least 1 mile, and an all-around white light at least 3.3 ft high visible for at least 2 miles.)

However, "legal" is not the same as smart, safe, sane and careful. In 2016 I retired from 42 years as a civil trial attorney, specializing in the litigation of recreational marine accidents. I have reviewed thousands of accident reports, personally investigated hundreds of incidents, and tried dozens of cases to verdict, including both collisions and allisions. At the outset, I always hypothetically asked: "Which side would I choose if I could?" That would tell me which way a jury was likely to lean, and thus how steep I hill I would have to climb for my actual client. I would hope not to have to represent a StormJib, as it would require a vertical climb with a slip leading to a very deep abyss. In other words, I would not be able to find a qualified expert to testify that it was reasonable for my client to be operating an unlit powered vessel in the dark at the time of the collision.

On over a dozen charter trips, from the BVI to Union Island and everything in between, we successfully operated our dinghies at night as follows:

1. No speed faster than idle in a mooring field.

2. Bow passenger tasked with correctly holding a red-green flashlight so as to be visible to other vessels.

Red-Green Battery Flashlight

3. A stern passenger tasked with shining a white flashlight off the stern, so as not to be directed toward the helmsperson yet visible to other vessels.

4. All passengers instructed to be observant for other moving vessels, mooring balls, anchor lines, etc.

We did so not be legal, but because it is reasonable and makes common sense.

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Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: aarpskier] #116190
01/08/2017 10:11 PM
01/08/2017 10:11 PM
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Posts: 1,049
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StormJib Offline
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If you have proper running lights certainly use them. Most of the charter boats are lucky if they have a working flashlight. We do carry small lights in our pockets or shore bag. Staying alert and avoiding other boats is the best way to protect yourself.

Here is what Boats US has to say on the subject.

Finding your boat in the dark can be a challenge. Ask everyone to keep the flashlights off to preserve your night vision until you get near the boat and are ready to tie up and unload. A solar garden light tied to a stanchion provides an inexpensive nighttime marker low on the mothership at the height where people in a dinghy are usually looking. Also, battery-powered LED lights in various colors, such as blue, can be suspended from dodgers or towers and won't drain your onboard energy reserves. Make sure lights such as these don't conflict with lighting required by the Navigation Rules

Establishing and maintaining night vision is the key to protecting your crew. Each night and anchorage will be different.

http://www.boatus.com/magazine/2016/october/dinghy-basics.asp

Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: StormJib] #116191
01/09/2017 12:18 AM
01/09/2017 12:18 AM
Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 304
Rockford, Michigan
aarpskier Offline
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Hypothetical Attorney ("HA") for deceased passenger of dinghy who died from injuries suffered in a collision with a powered vessel that t-boned the dinghy on its port side in the dark, questioning the captain of the ill-fated dinghy.

HA: Mr. Jib, were you the captain of the dinghy in which your friend died?

SJ: Yes.

HA: Did you have any flashlights aboard your dinghy capable of showing a white light prior to and at the time of the collision?

SJ: Yes, as we were required to by COLREG 23.

HA: Was your dinghy actually displaying any type of light prior to or at the time of the collision?

SJ: No.

HA: The injured passengers In your dinghy have testified that you instructed them not to turn on any flashlights because you wanted to preserve your night vision. Did you do that?

SJ: Yes.

HA: With your night vision perfectly intact, did you see the other vessel on an intersecting course with yours?

SJ: Yes.

HA: Did you take any action in an attempt to avoid a collision?

SJ: Not initially, because my dinghy had the right-of-way as the stand-on vessel.

HA: Did you hear the captain of the other vessel testify that he did not give way because although he was keeping a lookout, he observed no lights and was unable see your dinghy until just before impact.

SJ: Yes.

HA: On the night of this collision, were you aware of COLREG 17.b., which provides that when, from any cause, the stand-on vessel finds herself so close that collision cannot be avoided by the action of the give-way vessel alone, the stand-on vessel must take such action as will avoid a collision?

SJ: Yes.

HA: What did you do?

SJ: When I saw that the other vessel was not going to stop or alter course, I tried to do so, but it was too late.

HA: In hindsight, do you think this accident might have been avoided if someone in your dinghy had been displaying a white light for the captain of the give-way vessel to observe and react to?

SJ: Yes, but that would have hindered my night vision.

Verdict For Plaintiff.

Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: aarpskier] #116192
01/09/2017 12:36 PM
01/09/2017 12:36 PM
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StormJib Offline
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HA: Was your dinghy actually displaying any type of light prior to or at the time of the collision?

SJ: No.

Not going to happen. We would and have turned lights on to signal any vessel approaching a collision course.

HA: Did you take any action in an attempt to avoid a collision?

SJ: Not initially, because my dinghy had the right-of-way as the stand-on vessel.

Never going to stand on "rights" in any anchorage at night. Too many do not know the rules, are intoxicated, distracted, not paying attention, blinded by various sources of light on their own vessel. We maintain a lookout and alter course when any vessel is approaching. We will and do you light if the course is anywhere near collision.

I understand a courtroom or protest can go in any direction. If I am found to not display a light some or even all the burdens may fall on me. We along with most of the more experienced practical sailors make the choice to use out night vision as the first line of defense and collision avoidance. Night be able to see because a well meaning passengers or guest aboard your boat with a poor light for the situation is the greatest danger.

If you have the correct lights certainly use them. I would never count on someone seeing me in any anchorage. Always attain adequate night vision and maintain at least one person with that vision. Never let a poorly skilled drunk help you out with a flashlight on your boat at night.

I do carry significant liability insurance to protect me and my family for any mistake someone else or any court thinks I have made. Since 1979 I have kept our launches at night from contact with other vessels. I believe you must be able to see them to avoid them. Most of the overloaded dinghy's moving through the anchorages are flying blind with their own poor use of lights. Once your night vision is established you will be amazed what you can see and have been missing trying to make use of the wrong lights in the past.

If you truly cannot see anything in the water 360 degrees around you? Maybe you should not be moving in anything as exposed as a dinghy. Failure to maintain a proper lookout!

Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: warren460] #116193
01/09/2017 01:04 PM
01/09/2017 01:04 PM
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 128
psod Offline OP
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psod  Offline OP
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High jacked is right,, I only wanted to know if it would be practical to expect to dine ashore at night,, not get into a whole discussion like this,,,,
carry on,,,,,,,

Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: psod] #116194
01/09/2017 01:44 PM
01/09/2017 01:44 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
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StormJib Offline
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Quote
psod said:
High jacked is right,, I only wanted to know if it would be practical to expect to dine ashore at night,, not get into a whole discussion like this,,,,
carry on,,,,,,,


To your question. It is the norm for many if not most. With a hired captain he or she may run the dinghy for you. Others hand the kill switch over to you and let your group take care of themselves once the boat is on a mooring or at anchor for the night. I would carry my own small water resistant flashlight in my pocket or shore bag.

Even in two weeks you cannot possible dine at all the dinner options across the BVI.

Sample Meal Menu - There are many more!

Some may prefer a large late lunch ashore with grill your own or even just a salad on the boat for the evening meal. If we have young kids. Lunch is ashore(large and late) with dinner on the boat most nights.

Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: psod] #116195
01/09/2017 01:45 PM
01/09/2017 01:45 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 1,383
Maryland
Kirk Offline
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Kirk  Offline
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Posts: 1,383
Maryland
Quote
psod said:
High jacked is right,, I only wanted to know if it would be practical to expect to dine ashore at night,, not get into a whole discussion like this,,,,
carry on,,,,,,,


This is small potatoes compared to flag etiquette or fenders hanging over the side while underway! <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Grin.gif" alt="" />


Kirk in Maryland
Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: Kirk] #116196
01/09/2017 02:33 PM
01/09/2017 02:33 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,049
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StormJib Offline
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Quote
Kirk said:
Quote
psod said:
High jacked is right,, I only wanted to know if it would be practical to expect to dine ashore at night,, not get into a whole discussion like this,,,,
carry on,,,,,,,


This is small potatoes compared to flag etiquette or fenders hanging over the side while underway! <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Grin.gif" alt="" />


That one is easy? There are pictures in the daylight to demonstrate the expected decorum.

Proper and acceptable:

[Linked Image]

All wrong and to be avoided:

[Linked Image]

Further the flag, pendant, or signal of a commercial sport team or enterprise should never be flown anywhere from a yacht. Save your football, basketball, and school alumni stuff for the weekends inside the stadium.

Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: StormJib] #116197
01/09/2017 07:22 PM
01/09/2017 07:22 PM
Joined: May 2014
Posts: 109
Bozeman / Minneapolis
snowdog Offline
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Bozeman / Minneapolis
Actually, this link might be more useful for some to read:

http://www.wikihow.com/Not-Be-Annoying


s/v Snow Dog - Leopard 46
Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: psod] #116198
01/10/2017 03:18 AM
01/10/2017 03:18 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,765
Med/ Caribbean
sailbynight Offline
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Med/ Caribbean
Quote
psod said:
I was more or less just asking if it was practical to expect to dine ashore most nights,,,that would affect what food we would need to provision for,,,


Wow the topic is dining ashore.

So, most of the anchorages (mooring fields too) have choices of where to eat. Dinners will typically run $20-40 pp plus booze. Tipping is optional and some places go ahead and add a service charge.

Provisioning can be done nearby at any of the bases and most would probably recommend more drinks and less food. I believe that a high percentage of people have breakfast on the hook, lunch underway and dinner ashore.

Lunch options are also easy along the way.

Some people bring coolers of food with them but this is not necessary as nearly everything you expect will be waiting for you.

Beer is cheap, and so is rum and other liquors. Wine is higher than you'd expect. Ice is plentiful at anchorages and be sure to keep lots on hand

Now, the rest can go on bantering about lights in a mooring field.

FYI. Most yacht crew keep a person on the bow when driving their unlit dinghy at night. This person points a light forward in a scanning motion to look for lines and mooring balls or other obstacles.

Hope this is helpful

Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: sailbynight] #116199
01/10/2017 06:33 AM
01/10/2017 06:33 AM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 2,065
Ontario, Canada
warren460 Offline
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Ontario, Canada
Very good summary. I would add that you should have a back up plan for dinner in case the restaurant is full. I.e. Cooper island


Warren
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Lagoon 450, (part of the TMM fleet until April, Charter Caribe (all inclusive-crewed) in St Thomas thereafter https://chartercaribe.com/charters/ ).
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Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: psod] #116200
01/10/2017 10:06 AM
01/10/2017 10:06 AM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 625
MD, USA
polaris Offline
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polaris  Offline
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Posts: 625
MD, USA
Don't forget when you call on VHF for reservations everyone in the neighborhood hears you and knows when you will be off the boat. We use a fake boat name when calling - the restaurant will recognize you when you show up and the bad guys will be running around the harbor looking for a non-existent boat.


Polaris
Re: dinning on shore while anchored [Re: polaris] #116201
01/10/2017 12:01 PM
01/10/2017 12:01 PM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 6,098
Maryland
Twanger Offline
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Twanger  Offline
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Posts: 6,098
Maryland
Polaris - excellent point. Cell coverage is usually pretty good, so I try to do a phone call for reservations when possible. It's more secure. Also, reservations are often required, and sometimes they want to know what you'll be eating in advance. This completely depends of the restaurant, of course.

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