Originally Posted by Polwart
Yes I can't understand why a ship would want to turn off this unless there was so much "clutter" that it was obscuring other relevant info (like the other big ship ahead). That situation can really only be a problem in places like the solent (where its likely that a large vessel is constrained to the channel and "class b" boats would have to give way anyway). I'm not sure what the RYA is getting its knickers in a knot about: even without the ability to hide class B boats there is no guarantee that the bridge crew will identify and respond to any impending collision anyway. AIS transponder may be useful tool but its not human proof at either end, so best to assume you may not have been seen until you see evidence to the contrary. The same applies to Echomax/Seame - it will only help if everything works as intended and then the human beings in the system react correctly - 99% of the time they will but to rely on it is a bit of a gamble.
Could'nt have said it better myself...
There are time when i look at our 22" monitor in our office and all i can see is red triangles clogging up the solent. (i will take a screenshot tomorow and post the picture)
There are times when class B AIS is invaluable for leisure boaters but do you really need to have it switch on when your daylight sailing in the Solent or other busy coastal cruising area?...i dont believe so.
Offshore, when near or crossing shipping lanes, night time navigation, fog...yes, switch that baby on... (imagine if the Ouzo could have had AIS fited?) .
but a certain degree of restraint should be excersised before that 'on' button is pressed.
I wish yachties would treat their AIR transponders as " a big very bright all-round nav light", fantastic in the right conditions (again, night time, fog etc....) but not in daylight when they are surrounded by hundreds of other yachties all showing the same dazzling all-round light....it just creates confusion for those trying to distinguish one 'light' from another.