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19.2(c) clarification

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Post Options Post Options   Quote flaming Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: 19.2(c) clarification
    Posted: 21 May 18 at 5:18pm
I've recently started sailing in a new fleet, a very well established fleet with excellent sailors.  Recently I came across a situation where the behaviour of the whole fleet with respect to rule 19 differed from my interpretation of it, and as a newbie to the class I thought it best to check my understanding before I say anything.

Situation is that boats are running along a continuing obstruction against a strong current.  The advantage is to be hard against the obstruction so the fleet is basically in line astern.  As each boat blankets the one in front there is a lot of catching the boat in front going on.  Most boats are sailing considerably less than 1 boat width from the obstruction.  
What was happening was the boat behind was getting it's bow just overlapped between the stern of the boat in front, at a distance of inches, and the obstruction and then instantly demanding room to sail between the boat in front and the obstruction.  This was being given.

19.2(c) says
"While boats are passing a continuing obstruction, if a boat that was clear astern and required to keep clear becomes overlapped between the other boat and the obstruction and, at the moment the overlap begins, there is not room for her to pass between them, she is not entitled to room under rule 19.2(b). While the boats remain overlapped, she shall keep clear and rules 10 and 11 do not apply"

To me that means that since there was not at least a boat width between the obstruction and the leading boat when the boat behind obtained its overlap that room should not be called for or taken.  So in other words if you are sailing less than 1 boat width from the obstruction at all times you are safe from being passed between you and the obstruction.

Am I right? 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote GML Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 18 at 7:38am
You are correct, unless the boat behind is on starboard tack and the boat in front is on port tack at the moment the overlap is created; in that case the boat clear astern is not required to keep clear and so 19.2(c) does not apply.

See RYA cases 1968/11 and 2014/4 for more discussion of the entitlement to room at a continuing obstruction.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 18 at 8:23am
Agree, this is common on rivers, and where the banks are soft, any boat trying this would end up in the reeds.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote flaming Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 18 at 10:05am
Thanks guys, follow up question....

Would the room involved be just hull width, or does the boat in front need to have left enough room for the boom at 90 degrees to the hull as well, given that this is how everyone is sailing?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sam.Spoons Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 18 at 10:12am
I'd have said there would need to be room for the boat and all equipment in it's normal position which, on a dead run, means the boom at right angles and either a kite or goose winged jib.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote PeterG Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 18 at 11:21am
Definitely with all equipment in "normal position" - boom, goosewinged jib etc
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Post Options Post Options   Quote jeffers Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 18 at 11:50am
The definition of room in the RRS is:

Room The space a boat needs in the existing conditions, including space to comply with her obligations under the rules of Part 2 and rule 31, while manoeuvring promptly in a seamanlike way.

I seem to remember there is also a case about sailing into space that is not suitable/big enough (non-navigable water).

It may be worth looking through the Casebook to find it (I dont have the time right now). I would argue that if the boats are that close to a continuing obstruction and someone goes between a boat and said obstruction rather than to the clear side then they have made their own problem.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Brass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 18 at 12:15pm
Well, there is a case about sailing into space that is big enough:
Definitions, Mark-Room
Rule 18.2(b), Mark-Room: Giving Mark-Room
Rule 18.2(c)(2), Mark-Room: Giving Mark-Room
Rule 21(a), Exoneration
At a mark, when space is made available to a boat that is not entitled to it, she may, at her own risk, take advantage of the space.

And there's a case about what 'room' is

Definitions, Mark-Room
Definitions, Room
When a right-of-way boat is obligated to give mark-room to a boat overlapped inside her, there is no maximum or minimum amount of space that she must give. The amount of space that she must give depends significantly on the existing conditions including wind and sea conditions, the speed of the inside boat, the sails she has set and her design characteristics.


Edited by Brass - 23 May 18 at 10:10pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote GML Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 18 at 1:18pm
I'm not aware of a case that clarifies how much space there needs to be between the outside boat and the continuing obstruction. What I think we can say is that the inside boat can't ask the outside boat to move further away from the obstruction in order for the inside boat to get through the gap - the inside boat is only allowed to go into the gap if it is big enough for her to pass through at the moment the overlap begins - see RYA case 2014/4. (Note however that the outside boat may subsequently be required to move out if the continuing obstruction projects further out - see RYA case 1968/11).

(Note that RYA cases are not definitive except in the UK).
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Post Options Post Options   Quote davidyacht Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 18 at 2:54pm
Also interesting is whether you can go into a shallow (shelving) gap with your rudder and centreboard raised, then put them down once you are occupying inside berth ... 

Whilst the points made may seem perdantic, these are real world problems.
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