Forum: Rule 18 and Room at the Mark

New to Sailing

Bob Pierce
Nationality: United States of America
I hope this is not inappropriate.

Just looking for a ruling here. Fun stuff.

See the video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5B7bDf8W2hI

I know next to nothing about the rules.

If we think of the video frame as a clock, the wind was coming from 3:30.

I won't tell you which one is my kid . . . 
Created: 17-Jun-28 21:32

Comments

Loic Durand Raucher
Nationality: France
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • National Umpire
0
Well, around a mark rule 18 always (unless exceptions 18.1) applies. In this case, to my opinion, at zone the first boat is clear ahead, and then, entitled to mark room under 18.2.b.
Mark room includes room to go to the mark, and at the mark (still overlapped to the mark) to sail her proper course (which can include a jibe)
By failing to give her mark room, the second boat breaks rules 18.2.b, and 14
The first boat did not break rule 14, as she could not avoid contact when it was clear the second boat did not give mark room.

As the windward boat, the first boat broke rule 11, but she will be exonerated under 21.a
In no case it can be a rule 10 issue, as the contact occured when both boats were on port.

This is the mean of rule 18: protect the boat entitled to mark room, even if -under a section A rule- she is the keeping clear boat.
Keep your pleasure to sail and to watch your kid (which ever he/she is) sailing. This is the most important to have great sailing experiences.
Loïc
Created: 17-Jun-28 22:06
Bob Pierce
Nationality: United States of America
0
Can both Rule 11 and Rule 18 be violated at the same time?
Created: 17-Jun-28 22:50
Rob Overton
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • International Umpire
0
Actually, it all depends on where the next mark is.  This looks a lot like a team-race venue I'm familiar with, in which the mark shown is Mark 2 of a digital N course, meaning that the next leg is off to the left of the camera, perpendicular to the last leg shown.  In that case, this is, as you say, a rule 11 violation by #16 (the lead boat).  But getting to that answer is a little complicated.

#16 is clear ahead at the zone, so she is entitled to mark-room.  Mark-room is defined to be room to sail to the mark (which she gets), room to turn toward the next mark as required to sail the course (which she apparently gets), and room to pass the mark on its required side.  As soon as the other boat becomes overlapped inside her (you'll have to study the definition of "overlap", which is not entirely intuitive), the other boat also has to allow #16 to sail her proper course, which in this case would be more or less toward the next mark.  When #16 bears off hard, she makes contact with the other boat just before she jibes, so you're right -- she breaks rule 11.  If the contact had come a fraction of a second later, she would have broken rule 15, Acquiring Right of Way (because then she'd be on starboard tack and the other boat is on port).  In any case, she broke a rule.  The great thing about having mark-room is that you get exonerated for breaking those rules (also 11, 12, 13 and 16) if you're sailing within the mark-room to which you're entitled.  In this case, alas, #16 is not sailing within that mark-room -- she's got plenty of room to pass the mark on its required side and head toward the next mark, but instead she turns toward the previous mark.  So she doesn't get exonerated for breaking rule 11.  Time to take her turn (or turns, if this isn't a team race)!

If I was wrong about the next mark, and it's really back where the boats came from, or just out of our field of view back on the far shore with the buildings, the answer is completely different.  Then #16 is sailing within the mark-room to which she's entitled, and is exonerated by rule 21.  At the same time, the other boat isn't giving her room to turn to the next mark, nor to sail her proper course, and therefore the other boat breaks rules 18.2(b) and 18.2(c)(2). 
Created: 17-Jun-29 01:58
Bob Pierce
Nationality: United States of America
0
Wow. Thank you Rob Overton and Loic Raucher.  I actually think I understand everything you said. Very helpful for me to understand the definition of "mark room" and where the obligation to provide it ends.

Except one thing.

The one thing I don't understand is that both of you are saying that the first boat (#16) broke Rule 11.  I was thinking that the SECOND boat broke Rule 11.  I was thinking that the SECOND boat is to windward because that boat is further right on the screen.  It appears that I am wrong.

So, how does one determine which boat is to windward in the video? They are both on port tack, right?  But why is the second boat not the windward boat?

By the way, they were sailing straight back to where they came from.
Created: 17-Jun-29 03:52
Boris Kuzminov
Nationality: Russian Federation
0
But why is the second boat not the windward boat?
See DEFINITIONS:
Leeward and Windward A boat’s leeward side is the side that is or, whenshe is head to wind, was away from the wind. However, when sailing by the lee or directly downwind, her leeward side is the side on which her mainsail lies. The other side is her windward side. When two boats on the same tack overlap, the one on the leeward side of the other is the leeward boat. The other is the windward boat.
Created: 17-Jun-29 05:17
Loic Durand Raucher
Nationality: France
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • National Umpire
0
Bob,
Part 2 of the rules is organized in 4 sections.
Section A
13: one boat is tacking: she is the keeping clear boat
if no boat is tacking, then:
10: they are on opposite tacks, one is Stb, and the other on port
or they are on the same tack, and they are either (11) or not overlapped (12)

At all times, one, and only one, of those 4 rules applies. (This is true from the time you leave the beach or the deck, till when you come ashore.)

Then, between 2 boats, one is the keeping clear boat, and the other right of way (ROW).
The keeping clear boat has an obligation: to keep clear, early enough and strong enough.

But the ROW boat is NOT the king of the sea. She always has a limitation.
And this is Section B. (rules 14 to 17).
Rules are here to avoid contacts and crashes, eventually going to disasters.

And, as those crazy boats have to round marks, there is Section C (18 - 20) to organize the roundings.
Obstructions (shore, rocks, and even ROW boats) which have to be left on one side, are also in that Section.

Section D (21 - 24)
4 last rules. Last but not least. Not used every day, but still rules.

So, sorry I've been so long, yes, rules 11 (section A) and 18 (section C) can be broken at the same time in one incident, by the same boat, or by different boats.
Only 15 rules. And we can spend hours and years to discuss about them!!
Created: 17-Jun-29 07:02
Bill Handley
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • National Judge
0
I agree with the analysis that the call on this depends entirely on the position of the next mark. The first boat was clear ahead when she entered the zone and therefore is entitled to mark room which is always room to pass the mark on the required side and room to round the mark to sail the course. Mark room only includes room to sail close to the mark if that is the proper course for the boat entitled to Mark Room and her proper course will be determined by the position of the next mark.

If the next mark was off somewhere to the left of picture then 2nd has given mark room to first and first breaks rule 11 as she bears away. If the next mark was back where the boats had come from then 2nd had not given mark room to first and broke rule 18.2(b). 

The answer to the question  "can a boat break rule 18 and rule 11" is a technical one and I think the technical answer is yes. For example at a leeward mark if clear astern at the zone gets a late inside overlap on clear ahead and tries to force a passage between clear ahead the mark she breaks rule 18.2(b) which says she must give clear ahead mark room. She also break rule 11 as she is windward boat and will not be exonerated under rule 21 because she is not sailing within mark room to which she is entitled.

The answer to the question "why is the second boat not windward boat" is that according to the definition she is leeward boat.
Created: 17-Jun-29 07:37
Lloyd Causey
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
From watching the video several times this appears to be a leeward mark (even if the wind has shifted) and I 100% agree with Bill Handley.  If you watch the sails the wind, as they approach the mark, is behind their sails.  The lead boat is entitled to mark room and second boat must give it and being the windward boat the second boat must also keep clear of the leeward boat.

Created: 17-Jul-01 16:33
Bob Pierce
Nationality: United States of America
0
I was there.  :) If you think of the video frame as a clock, the wind was coming from about 3:30.

This is why I'm sorta having trouble understanding which is the windward boat just before the moment of impact. The first boat gybes after the impact, so, I THINK the best explanation (which I believe is Rob Overton's explanation)  is that the first boat was on a run or sailing by the lee just before impact.  Which would make the second boat the leeward boat (because it is on the same side of the first boat as the first boat's mainsail). Which would mean that, in sum, the second boat violated Rule 18.2(b).  The first boat violated Rule 11 (being the windward boat), but is exonerated because it was entitled to mark room.

That's how I see it at this point in time.

But don't forget, basically everything I know about this topic I learned on this thread.

Created: 17-Jul-01 22:44
Bill Handley
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • National Judge
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Remember that according to the definition if a boat is on the run or by the lee her leeward side id determined by the position of her boom and not by the direction of the wind. If you stop the video at 41 seconds (just before the impact) you see very clearly that both boats are on the same tack with the second boat overlapped to ;leeward
Created: 17-Jul-02 05:58
Lloyd Causey
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0

Bob Pierce,  Even if the wind is from the right in the picture, the sails show the wind driving the rear / port side of the sails, not the front so they are reaching down on a run, not overlapped. The definition of the position of the boom windward/leeward is for determining which tack the boat is on going downwind in rule 11.  If the second boat could put the main boom across to the port side and sail by the lee, she would have been on starboard and have right away. 

However these boats are not overlapped and on port tack so rule 12 is the determining as the approach the mark.  Rule 11 cannot control unless they are overlapped.

Remember that rule 11 only applies when both boats are on the same tack and overlapped.  On the run approaching both boats are on port tack but the leading boat is clear ahead so they are not overlapped.

In this time frame rule 12 is the determining factor and the boat clear astern must keep clear of a clear ahead.  

When they enter the zone they are still in the same positions and rule 18.2 b  in the last sentence rules.  

They become overlapped for a short time before collision.  The second boat is closer to the wind and is windward and the first boat is furthest from the wind and therefore leeward.  Rule 11 says the windward boat shall keep clear of the leeward boat. So the second boat is also required to keep clear.

At the time of contact the second boat broke rules 18.2 b, 11, and 14 and is DSQ.

The lead boat does not break rule 14 because it was not possible to avoid contact.



Created: 17-Jul-02 13:18
Bob Pierce
Nationality: United States of America
0
Bill Handley:  Yes.  I agree with your comment about the second boat being to leeward at 41 seconds.  Thus, the first boat broke Rule 11 (but is exonerated).

Lloyd Causey: You disagree with what appears to be the consensus that the second boat is to leeward just before impact and, thus, the first boat (not the second boat) broke Rule 11. Do you want to reconsider?

Thanks!



Created: 17-Jul-02 14:16
Lloyd Causey
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
I will say again, when one boat is clear ahead rule 12 is the deciding rule if they are on the same heading and they are both on port tack.  In the last few seconds 39-41 the second bot appears to get inside and having an overlap.  However boat 16 is the leeward boat and the second boat is the windward boat that must keep clear.

I made a TSS drawing of the rounding but this will not let me insert it here.  When the boats are overlapped that boat which the wind strikes first is the windward boat.  The boat furthest from the wind is the leeward boat.

Created: 17-Jul-02 21:29
Bill Handley
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • National Judge
0
 The RRS definitions state - Leeward and Windward   A boat’s leeward side is the side that is or, when she is head to wind, was away from the wind. However, when sailing by the lee or directly downwind, her leeward side is the side on which her mainsail lies. The other side is her windward side. When two boats on the same tack overlap, the one on the leeward side of the other is the leeward boat. The other is the windward boat.

So what determines whether a boat is windward or leeward in this situation has nothing to do with which one the wind strikes first but is governed by how her boom lies. The first boats boom at 41 seconds lies on her starboard side so that is her leeward side. The second boat lies on the first boat's starboard side so she is the leeward boat. The definition could not be clearer.
Created: 17-Jul-02 22:02
Lloyd Causey
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Regional Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Bill I am forwarding the explanation given by Dave Perry in his 400+ page book on the RRS 2017-2020. Please read entirely including the last paragraph. There are also numerous examples in his book "100 question quiz on the RRS."

LEEWARD AND WINDWARD

A boat's leeward side is the side that is or, when she is head to wind, was away from the wind. However, when sailing by the lee or directly downwind, her leeward side is the side on which her mainsail lies. The other side is her windward side. When two boats on the same tack overlap, the one on the leeward side of the other is the leeward boat. The other is the windward boat.

The definition Tack, Starboard or Port tells us that whether we are on port or starboard tack is determined by our windward side; i.e., if our windward side is our port side, we are on port tack.

This definition tells us that our windward side is the side closest to the wind, and that our leeward side is the opposite side. If the boat is heading directly into the wind, then whichever side was the windward side before the boat was head to wind is still considered the windward side.

The only exception is when the boat is heading directly downwind or "by the lee" (which means the boat has continued to turn past directly downwind without the boom changing sides). In that case, the windward side is the side opposite the side the boom is on.

"If I'm sailing close-hauled on port-tack in light air and heel the boat sharply to windward such that the boom falls to the port side of the boat, am I now on starboard tack; or if I'm sailing by the lee and forcibly holding the mainsail over the port side with my arm, am I still on starboard tack?"

No. Remember that when you are not sailing directly downwind or' by the lee, your tack is determined by the side of the boat the wind is blowing over. In your first case, when you are sailing close-hauled, the wind is blowing over your port side regardless of where your boom is located; therefore you are on port tack. The same would be true if you are sailing along on port tack, and then go head to wind and push your boom out on the port side to back down.You are still on port tack as long as your bow doesn't pass head to wind. The moment it passes head to wind, you are now on starboard tack.

When you are sailing directly downwind or by the lee, your leeward side is the side on which your mainsail "lies," "Lies" is used intentionally to indicate that it is the side where your mainsail would naturally lie; i.e., be pushed by the wind. as opposed to by the control of some other force such as your arm, the mainsheet or gravity. Therefore, in your second case, you are now on port tack because if you released the mainsail, it would lie on your star­board side. The same would be true if, while sailing directly downwind, you trimmed the mainsail in amidships. Your tack will be determined by where the mainsail would lie naturally; in this case, most likely it will want to go back out to the side it was on before you trimmed it in.

Finally, there is the definition of windward and leeward boat. If the boats are on the same tack and they are overlapped, the one on the leeward side of the other is the leeward boat. The other is the windward boat. Notice that if they are not overlapped, they are not "windward" and "leeward» boats; they are "clear ahead" and" clear astern."

Created: 17-Jul-03 01:19
Bill Handley
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • National Judge
0
Thank you for this - as the final two paragraphs confirm exactly what I said in my original post I assume we are now in agreement.

At 41 seconds the first boats boom lies naturally on her starboard side and as the is no external force being exerted on it that is her leeward side as stated in the penultimate paragraph. The second boat is on the same tack and overlapped on the starboard (leeward ) side of the first boat so she is leeward boat according to the final paragraph. I am glad we now agree.
Created: 17-Jul-03 06:24
Loic Durand Raucher
Nationality: France
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • National Umpire
0
In french, we say: "Couper les cheveux en 4". meaning something like cut the hair in 4 bits. I'm sure there must be an english sentence to say the same.
That looks to be the most enjoyable purpose of international judges!!

In this very case, with a very still camera (which does not happen that often) there is no evidence that, at the time of the incident and contact, the boom of 16 stays on her right side just because the centrifuge force due to the rounding. Last certaincy is then she still is on port, and obviously to windward of the second boat.

But, first, we all agreed that the first boat, as clear ahead at zone, was entitled to mark room. Which mark room she was not given, as her proper course was back to where she was coming.
And the main rules broken are 18.2.b and 14.
But definitely, I would consider boat 16 broke rule 11 and is exonerated under 21.a

Created: 17-Jul-03 08:38
Bill Handley
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • National Judge
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Loic - my french isn't that good - I originally read this as " cut the horse into 4 bits" which is clearly wrong. Would perhaps the english expression be "the devil is in the detail"  ?

By the way we are in total agreement on the incident and the rules that apply.
Created: 17-Jul-03 09:38
Loic Durand Raucher
Nationality: France
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • National Umpire
0
Yes, Bill.
The point is that our rules are too complicated.
Even if we (judges) are used to handle with them, for the public, including most sailors -even of high level- and a large amount of judges, it is too complicated.
Even if, over the years, the rules have got so much easier.
When I was a young sailor (far back away!), the rule was different before the starting signal, after the starting signal but before crossing the line, and after starting.
And it was so difficult, that rule 10 was 36.

If we had lines on the water, roundabouts, and traffic lights, we could forget boats and use cars!
Enjoy you summer. Have a lot of great events.
Loïc
Created: 17-Jul-03 10:48
Rob Overton
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • International Umpire
1
I agree that the rules are complicated.  There are a number of reasons why we don't make them simpler, but the primary one is that the rules have to cover such a wide variety of incidents in such a wide variety of circumstances.  The rules for pole vaulting, for example, can be pretty simple because every vault is basically the same -- there's a bar, an area to run toward it, a pole to vault with, and a pit to land in.  In sailing, there are all kinds of conditions, from flat calm to screaming survival conditions, with all kinds of courses (apparently, the video in this thread was of boats sailing a reach, jibing, and then returning on the reciprocal course -- almost unheard of in sailboat racing, but the rules still have to cover it).

Having said that, I should point out that the rules governing how boats should deal with other boats require only 8 pages of a 4X7 rulebook, including the definitions.  For contrast, the corresponding rules of pole vaulting are more than a page long, and baseball requires 123 pages to describe the rights and obligations of players! 

In many cases, we readers make the right of way rules more complicated than they are.  I think a good example is the confusion in this thread about which boat is windward and which is leeward in the video.  The definition of "windward" and "leeward" is not very complicated -- if the wind is coming from one side of the boat, that's the windward side (and that's the tack she's on), and the other side is leeward.  When boats are sailing downwind, it's no longer clear which side of the boat the wind is coming from, so we need an arbitrary way to determine which side is "windward".  Given that when a boat is on a beat or a reach, her boom is always on her leeward side, it makes sense to use that cue to identify which side of a boat is her leeward side when running.  It also means that a boat that bears off onto a run doesn't change tacks unless she jibes, which provides continuity in what rules apply to her.

We could simplify that definition by simply saying a boat's leeward side is the side on which her boom lies, but that would remove the rationale for the distinction between windward and leeward.  In many cases in the RRS, rules are slightly longer than they have to be because we want to "set the scene", i.e., give some idea about what's going on in that rule so the reader has a context to work within.  In the case of "windward" and "leeward", the concept of which side the wind is blowing from gives the reader a clearer view of where the distinction comes from than which side the boom lies on.  It also agrees with the historical and ordinary meanings of the words. 

When I'm teaching the rules, I try to emphasize the importance of three big concepts:  1.  Which side of a boat is her windward side (and thus the tack she's on) and which is leeward? 2.  Are boats overlapped or clear ahead/clear astern? 3. If the boats are in the zone of a mark and are approaching or rounding it, does rule 18 apply and if so, which one is entitled to mark-room?  It's critical that every competitor be able to answer those three questions instantly and intuitively.  I encourage competitors to look around before the start of a race, when boats are simply sailing around waiting for their starts, and train themselves by saying, for each such boat, what tack she's on and whether she's overlapped with another boat. When sailing upwind or downwind, every time you see a boat approaching, say, "She's on starboard tack and we're on port.  She has right of way over us," or "We're both on port tack; we're overlapped to leeward so we have right of way." Do this even if the other boat will not come anywhere near you, just for practice.  At mark roundings, learn to decide quickly whether rule 18 applies (see rule 18.1).

The other thing I try to emphasize in my rules seminars is the value of sticking to what the rules say.  Basically, there are two obligations: keep clear and give room.  If a boat not entitled to room cuts inside at a mark, don't think "she took room she wasn't entitled to" or some such thing; there's no rule about taking room you're not entitled to.  Think "did she just break a right of way rule, or fail to give the other boat room?"  If the answer is yes, you should be able to identify the rule she broke.  If not, don't think "she took room freely given" or some other such idea; there's no rule saying anything about that.  Think, "she kept clear and gave the other boat room, so she broke no rule."  There are really only 11 rules to pick from -- 10 through 13 and 15 through 21 (the rest are common sense), and they can be memorized in an evening.

And of course, if you see a way the rules or definitions can be simplified without drastically changing the game, sit down and write your idea to rules@ussailing.org.  You'll get an answer, I promise!  And maybe you'll get to change the rules.
Created: 17-Jul-03 18:04
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