Originally Posted by spence
Vessels under 7m LOA:
**Maximum speed not exceeding 7 knots**
Required to carry a single all round white light but should also carry side lights if practicable to do so.
It's the "if practicable" bit that is important here.
One of the rescue teams that I've worked with operates 5 SIBS and 2 RIBS under 7m. One RIB is over 7m and has a console with A-frame and all the necessary lights. The other seven boats are all tiller control (we tend work mostly inside or on the surfline). There is next to nothing to attach a light to in the boat (apart from perhaps on top of the engine cowling). So when we are out on night-ops (very rare) we have diving strobe lights attached to our PFD shoulders that are switched onto permanent beam.
It's not ideal, but we feel having two or three little white lights close together guarantees that we are visible from 360degrees, whereas one light on the helms shoulder, his head blocks about 160degrees.
We did experiment with placing one of these lights on the bow of the boat, but found that it just dazzled the helm all the time.
P.S. This was/is on the Atlantic coast of France... I dunno how strict they are at clamping down on things like this, but we never had any complaints.
EDIT: Just re-read the IRPCS... and it does look like we aren't complying. Interesting. So.. how do the RNLI Lifeguard Arancias, or the D-class compy? I'm gonna go Google some photos.
I mean? Maybe the Arancias don't operate at night, but I'd imagine the D-class might... particularly in the winters ooop nooorth!