US Coast Guard Boating Safety Circular

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by Ike, Nov 5, 2014.

  1. Ike
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    Ike Senior Member

    2 people like this.
  2. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six Previous Member

    Thanks, Ike.

    It amazes me that the reflective tape on the hull is a new idea. Sometimes I'm astounded by what the design community has come up with, sometimes I'm astonished by what they missed.
     
  3. NavalSArtichoke
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    NavalSArtichoke Senior Member

    Maybe also add phosphorescent paint to make locating at bote at nite easier.
     
  4. Ike
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    Ike Senior Member

    Actually it is nothing new. I can remember a similar article being put out by the Office of Boating Safety back in the late 70's. So it's just been recycled.
     
  5. daiquiri
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    daiquiri Engineering and Design

    IMO, the reflective paint can only work on frequently cleaned hulls. The marine growth, in particular algae and lichens, can make a reflective paint become a strip of green non-reflective stuff pretty quickly, especially in warm waters. I believe that this issue should be investigated before eventually making a leap from a recommendation towards a requirement.
     
  6. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Reflective stripe

    Here at Port Canaveral, literally hundreds of trailer boats launch every week and sometimes several hundred. Every one of those boats could benefit from the reflective stripe. It's the trailer powerboats that most frequently capsize around here.
     
  7. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Peter, I remember the studies conducted back in the 70's about the reflective tape thing and also their changing the recommended "safety red" to safety orange", with tests proving it a little better in some conditions. I also think a strobe with an inversion switch that automatically starts with certain sustained angles, would be a good idea.
     
  8. UNCIVILIZED
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    UNCIVILIZED DIY Junkyard MadScientist

    Haven't read the article yet, but decades back I read one which suggested putting strips of SOLAS reflective life jacket tape on your mast. And since then I have, & it definitely makes my boat easy to find at night. Just a few 6" long pieces in strategic spots half way up the mast, & the same up top. Saved my heine BIG TIME on one occasion.

    Although in the article I read, they were recommending doing it so that it was easier for ships to see sailboats at night if/when they picked up an intermittent radar contact at night, & wanted to see what/if anything was there (via spotlight).

    One other thing worth taking note of is that in a fair number of states, the registration numbers & stickers which they have you put onto the hull are reflective, much like the tape.
     
  9. Ike
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    Ike Senior Member

    Interesting idea. Frankly anything that gets someone's attention when a boat is in distress is a good idea. The problem we had with strobes back in the 70's and 80's was people were using them in non-distress situations which is not allowed under the Nav rules. But in distress they are allowed (in fact I have one that flashes SOS. Although today I wonder how many people know the code for SOS.)

    I also find it curious that this article is the one that got everyone's attention. It's a recommendation and as far as I know is not being considered as a requirement. However it is a requirement on life jackets used on commercial passenger vessels.
     
  10. UNCIVILIZED
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    UNCIVILIZED DIY Junkyard MadScientist

    Ike, there are still a good number of cruising vessels which have strobes, half way up, or at the top of their masts. They put them there so that it's a bit easier for large vessels to see them, & in theory assist with the smaller vessels not getting run down/over.

    Albeit, sometimes it works bass ackwards towards their goal of avoiding being run down. As strobes typically indicate distress, & so sometimes the big ships will come closer for a better look at the situation. In addition to trying to hail the smaller vessel via the radio etc.

    Of course using strobes in this manner violates navigation rules, but... I'm guessing that not too many tickets get written in the open ocean.
     
  11. Ike
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    Ike Senior Member

    Yes I know. That's what I was referring to. Fortunately no one (to my knowledge ) has been run down because of it but there were some near misses back in the 80's and I assume there have probably been some since then. Commercial vessels assume it is a distress signal and go to investigate. This has resulted in some near collisions. But, no tickets aren't usually written out there (except for drugs)
     
  12. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

    I always remember standing on a marina dock on a pitch black night - watching what I thought was a UFO approaching the coast.

    It was quite a shock when a 60 foot sailboat came into the jetty light, with this tiny little mast light way up in the sky.

    I would want a lot more indication of where my expensive investment was, to avoid collision at night.
     

  13. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    This is the 2 mile visibility requirement for nav lights. Even at the end of their range, at 2 miles you should be able to see the direction of the vessel and make out its type if properly displayed. A LED sign on the masthead, declaring drunken sailors are aboard would be helpful, but the the first time you slide into what appears to be a nice anchorage, filled with what also appears to be dozens of seemingly parked container ships, just to learn after a sleepless night, come sun up you've parked among lots of oil rigs, offers an idea of why the pros don't have as much trouble with this than us.
     
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