Right of way
There are "no rights of way".
only "stand on" and "stand off" vessels. No vessel has a Right of Way, instead of having Rights of Way,
they have “responsibilities of passage“. Primary to this is to:
“Avoid Coalition with another vessel”.
A risk of collision exists if another boats remains at the same angle with respect to the bow for some time. If this
happens change your heading or speed but not attempt to cross there bow as this will violate the secondary responsibility,
"Not to impede another vessel". These means that you do not take an action that courses other vessel
to be slowed down or change course. Particularly if the vessel is constrained by draft (depth) or have limited manoeuvrability
(stopping distance or turning circle). Larger boats may fall into this category, so in a sailing boat do not expect a ferry
or a tanker to give way as some large vessel only have effective steering and control above a certain speed, so slowing them
down or impeding may course a hazard.
If you have not risked a collision and are not impeding
another vessel then the following hierarchy f stand off exist
Sailing vessel under sail
Vessels constrained by
draft or manoeuvrability
Motor Powered vessels
When navigating controlled channels, river or canals you should position your boat to the right of centre of
the channel. In Canals and river it is prudent to not get too close to the bank where debris (like shopping trolleys and street
cones can have been dumped in the river. For the same reason it is also prudent to slow down when passing under bridges such
that you do not damage your boat in a collision if something has been dumped of the bridge. Also but not so obviously it is
also prudent to not follow to closely to the boat in front as it can have stirred up debris like ropes or tarpaulins from
the bottom that will then get caught round your propeller.
Head to Head on Meeting
When you meet another boat if the canal allows you should move further to the right, this is done with a bold manoeuvre,
to show clear intention.
Turning Starboard (right)
You can sound your horn one for
one second in fog or flash a light one also one for one second. Note that boats navigating with the current have priority
if you are needing to make to a passing place.
Turning Port (Left)
If you wish to
turn to port (left) then two one second blast of your horn or flashes of your light at a good range will show this intention.
Note that when turning you should be a stand on vessel but only if you are not causing a collision or impeding another vessel.
Stern Approaching Vessel
If you another vessel approach from behind
then hold a course perhaps allowing the boat to pass. The other vessel can pass either side of you but it should be note that
it is normal to move starboard (right) to allow space to pass on the port side.
If you wish to reverse and there is another vessel then you should sound your horn for three one
second blasts. Note that a reverse manoeuvre could cause a risk of collision or impede another vessel.
you are unclear of another boats intension then sound your horn or flash your light five times for one second each (five times
so at not to be confused with two port turn indications).
In fog or low visibility
you should set you speed to be able to stop completely in half the visible range. If you are a motor vessel then sound your
horn for once for a five second blast every 60 seconds. If you are a sailing vessel the you should sound you horn one for
5 second and then twice for 1 second ever 6 seconds. If you hear this 5 second blasts or 5 followed by two short 1 second
blasts from another vessel then you should stop and reply once with and single blast to show intention to pass to starboard
one the other vessel has responded then you can proceed.
If crossing a controlled channel river or canal then the vessels
in the channel are stand one. Do not attempt to cross across a bow. Note that when crossing the channel you should make leeway
then mean not aiming up stream put travel perpendicular to the flow so as not to decrease another vessel risk of collision