Wednesday, May 2, 2012


From various Media Reports and the comments to them it seems that many who are commenting do not know what the Nautical Rules are, let alone having read and understood them.  Some are still wallowing in that great nautical misconception of "steam gives way to sail".  Nothing could be further from the truth and if you settle down to read and understand the Nautical Rules 1 to 38 plus the annexes and other data all will be revealed to you.  This is another advantage of having a maritime license one has to study and pass a comprehensive examination in the Nautical Rules.

For those of you involved in yacht racing and those of you who state you do not know about yacht racing - but still comment on it - the instructions of the yacht race committee do NOT supersede the "International Rules of the Road" in any way whatsoever.  The Nautical Rules - International or Inland as applicable to the waters operated in are always in force.  If a situation occurs in which a conflict appears likely between the Nautical Rules and the race instructions the Nautical Rules must be followed.

Should an incident occur the Admiralty Court will base its judgement on whether the Nautical Rules where followed and regard the race instructions as an advisement to the race participants only.  This includes those Local Notices to Mariners which go out on these occasions they are an advisement to mariners to be aware and stress the importance of fully obeying Rule 5 of the Nautical Rules.  Such advisements cannot and do not change the application of the Nautical Rules which can only be addressed and changed at an International Maritime Organization (IMO) Conference after lengthy discussion and ratification by the member Governments. 

NAUTICAL LOG has seen some race committee instructions and Local Notices to Mariners which give the impression that "temporary" changes are in place during these races - this is absolutely false - always follow the Nautical Rules as in COMDTINST M16672.2 latest edition.

Good Watch

Off the coast of Puntland, Somalia there are some 300 of our fellow mariners held hostage by pirates, as such they face mutilation and death daily.  Can you help rescue them?

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