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    The Hull Truth About Avoiding a Collision on the Water

    While there isn't a clear-cut right of way, there are rules all boaters must follow to avoid collisions. But, if one does happen, find out who's responsible!

    The Hull Truth About Avoiding a Collision on the Water

    The Hull Truth About Avoiding a Collision on the Water Who is responsible for avoiding collision between two boats? 

    While the water doesn’t have a clear-cut right-of-way, there are definite rules all boaters must follow. The answer to who is responsible for avoiding a collision between two boats is that both captains share this duty. It doesn’t matter if you’re boating inland or international waters. It also applies to rivers and the Great Lakes. The law is clear.

    Boating Accidents and Fatalities

    The US Coast Guard reported nearly 4,300 boating accidents in 2017. Operator inattention was the primary contributing factor, followed by improper lookout, inexperience, mechanical failure, and alcohol use. Almost 30 percent involved a collision with another vessel. The sobering factor about these statistics is that boater education could help reduce these figures and save lives.

    Over 80 percent of these accidents happened in cases where the captain had no instruction. The reality is that only seven states have mandatory education requirements for all operators, according to the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators. Boaters have the opportunity to learn about regulations on the water, such as the navigation rules and responsibility for collision avoidance.

    Many states require education for younger individuals and those operating personal watercraft. However, 30 percent of these incidences occurred on crafts where the captain was over 55. Other factors also come into play when discussing who is responsible for avoiding a collision between two boats.

    Personal Floatation Device and the Law

    Usage of personal floatation devices or PFDs is mandatory in all 50 states. However, only one, Louisiana, requires them pass 16 years of age. It’s a critical point, given the fact that over half of the boat collisions involved one or more persons ejected or otherwise forced into the water. More than 80 percent of drowning victims were not wearing a PFD.

    Rules of the Water

    Operating a boat safely requires some knowledge of the terminology and so-called rules of the road. The basic regs apply across the board, no matter what body of water you’re boating. Others are site-specific. An excellent place to start is with the parts of the boat.


    Knowing these terms is essential since many rules depend on knowing what they mean. They are as follows:

    Bow: front of the boat

    Stern: back of the boat

    Port: left side of the boat

    Starboard: right side of the boat

    The body of the boat is called the hull and the upper rim, the gunwale. Boating laws cover specific parts. For example, passengers cannot sit on the gunwale while the vessel is underway because of the risk of falling into the water. Others concern navigation.

    Navigation Rules

    The navigation rules spell out how boats should pass to avoid a collision and keep you from having to check out new boat prices. When two vessels meet, one is the give-way and the other, the stand-on. The former yields the right-of-way to the other. The regs cover meeting head-on, crossing, and overtaking. You can think of them as the laws of the water.

    Meeting Head-On

    In this case, neither boat has the right-of-way per se. Each captain should maneuver their craft so that both are passing on the port side. You should also slow down and stay alert for any hazards such as the other vessel towing a tube.


    The boat that has the other in its sight on the starboard is the give-way vessel. The operator is responsible for staying out of the way or changing course to interfere with the other. You can tell if another craft is in front of you at night if you see a red light. It is always on the port side, whereas the starboard has a green one. You’ll see a white one in the stern or back.


    Unless you have an oversized rearview mirror, you may find it hard to see boats trying to pass you. That makes you the stand-on vessel. The one behind you is the give-way and must not get in your way. Instead, you should maintain your present course. The other one should signal his intentions with a short blast of the craft’s horn. Two mean that he’s passing on the port side and one for starboard side.


    Who goes first depends on the type of boat and its maneuverability. The less control that a vessel has, the higher it ranks on the hierarchy. The pecking order goes from top to bottom in the following order:

    Vessel being overtaken by another

    Unmanned boat

    Craft with limited control due to nets or other gear

    Vessels impacted by the wind

    Fishing boats actively engaged

    Sailboats Powered boats

    That brings up another vital aspect of avoiding collisions. A powered boat can take swifter action than one that is hampered in some way. That doesn’t mean that her captain isn’t responsible. It is, after all, the duty of all boaters.

    The exceptions to this list apply to fishing boats that are trolling. In this case, they are powered vessels. Also, many sailboats have used outboard motors to navigate to their mooring sites. They fall into this class too.

    The Logic of the Laws

    As you can see, the rules make sense, especially for boaters who have taken a safety course. Regulations target both prevention as with navigation and precaution as with PFDs if an accent happens. It is the responsibility of the operator to know what regs apply wherever they boat.

    Source : www.nadaguides.com

    Two boats are operating in the same general area. who is responsible for avoiding a collision?

    Two boats are operating in the same general area. who is responsible for avoiding a collision? - 4170661

    06/22/2017 Physics High School

    answered • expert verified

    Two boats are operating in the same general area. who is responsible for avoiding a collision?

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    Expert-verified answer

    in this case, the one that responsible for avoiding a collision would be: the operators of both boats

    When the operators of each boat spot each other in a same area, they should use their siren to notify each other's position and uses communication device to determine how they should pass through to avoid collision

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    The operators of both boats are responsible for collision. Individual skippering a boat must do everything possible to avoid collision.

    Part of the navigation rule states that every person skippering a boat should consider all dangers and collision risks and that could also mean breaking the rules if evasive action is required.

    Further Explanation

    There are certain rules that every boat operator must follow when confronting other vessels.  These rules are very essential so as to avoid collision.

    The navigation rules are below

    If two boats are getting close to each other head on, it is important for both boats to change their course to the right (starboard) in order for both boats to end up passing port-side to port-side

    In a situation that two boats cross each other part and are on course for collision, it must important to give way to the boat on the right (starboard). The boat giving way must take prompt action. Such boat operator can either stop the boat or change the course to the right.

    In the circumstance that the boat giving way has another boat on the port hand side that is not changing course or give way, the helmsman can take action with a stop or change direction

    It is important that any boat, motorized, sail or powered must give plenty of room if overtaking.


    avoid a collision between two boats brainly.com/question/4170661


    boats vessels navigation rules collision maintain course Still stuck?

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    Source : brainly.com

    Rules for Encountering Other Vessels

    Rules for Encountering Other Vessels

    There are rules that every operator must follow when encountering other vessels.

    Two terms help explain these rules.

    Give-way vessel: The vessel that is required to take early and substantial action to keep well away from other vessels by stopping, slowing down, or changing course. Avoid crossing in front of other vessels. Any change of course and/or speed should be large enough to be readily apparent to another vessel. (A series of small changes should be avoided.)Stand-on vessel: The vessel that must maintain its course and speed unless it becomes apparent that the give-way vessel is not taking appropriate action. If you must take action, do not turn toward the give-way vessel or cross in front of it.

    The action a vessel operator should take when encountering another vessel depends on the answers to two questions.

    How are the two vessels propelled?

    Two power-driven vessels

    Two sailing vessels

    A power-driven vessel and a sailing vessel

    How are the two vessels approaching one another?

    Meeting head-on: A vessel operator sees another vessel ahead or nearly ahead

    Paths that cross: Two vessels are on crossing paths so as to involve risk of collision

    Overtaking: A vessel is coming upon another vessel from behind or nearly behind the other vessel

    Source : www.boat-ed.com

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