RULE 9: NARROW CHANNELS
(a) (i) [Inld] A vessel proceeding along the course of a narrow channel or fairway shall keep as near to the outer limit of the channel or fairway which lies on her starboard side as is safe and practicable.
Also, folks driving cars shouldn't change lanes without looking either but it happens. If their rear quarter panel hits your front fender, you are not at fault. If your front end hits their back end, cops would say you should have slowed/stopped.
Doesn't matter to me what the guy in front does, I'm expecting it and will react if I am close. What if you were in front and saw a mostly submerged log about 20' long large enough to tear both drives off the boat that if you swerved you might miss cause you don't have time to stop? Do you maintain course because someone is comming up on you or do you swerve?
I will try the horn in the future, just in case. Hopefully, it won't come across as me being a d!ckhead as it would on land.
Regarding the jetski analogy, consider this: If you come up directly behind a jetski, and he makes a (typical) sudden turn, the result is he moves away from your path no matter what. On the other hand, once you get close enough that you may begin to endager him if he stops or falls, you have to make some kind of choice and begin bearing away in order to make your pass. No simple solutions.
I appreciate Blue Thunders' remarks. I do get some grief from time to time for being "Sammy Safety" (Heck, I even have a MMSI VHF and a rear view mirror on my boat...), so incidents like this get me wondering about whether or not I am really always at my best when I'm behind the wheel.
Like I said earlier, I dont begrudge the other driver. It was the end of a nice weekend, and all of us go-fast types rarely expect to be overtaken. Lord know that I've made some bad decisions over the years.
All we can do is keep our heads screwed on straight and look out for each other. I appreciate the comments on how I might have made the situation safer, and will keep those in mind in the future. Good conversation.
Retired! Boating full-time now.
I underlined what I did because I'm always over cautious on this one. I don't ever let myself get "Closer and Closer", especially if it makes me start thinking about my next move If I need to. I think it's just inviting trouble that doesn't need to be there. In situations like the one you described, I'd generally slow to his speed or less.
For the jetski? I would never come up directly behind one, nor would I get anywhere close to them on the side to pass. Most jetskis are very unpredictable from a boater's standpoint, since they can turn on a rail at a moment's notice. I don't think your problem was leaving more room side-to-side, although that might have helped him to see you in peripheral vision. I think the problem develops when you keep closing on a boat more or less directly in front of you. IMO, it greatly increases the risks.
Problem solved. I just bought a new horn.
Retired! Boating full-time now.
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