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Old 06 January 2004, 07:18   #1
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Rules & Regulations?

Would someone please clarify the following points for me please: A group of us have a 6m RIB and were discussing the need for a radar reflector, red/green & all round white light and upgrading to DSC. Our most experienced member insists that the reflector and lights are only necessary if the boat is to be used commercially, is this so? I understand that the coastguard will continue to monitor ch16 until the end of 2004, so can we put off the expense of a radio upgrade for a while? Dave
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Old 06 January 2004, 07:39   #2
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A radar reflector should be carried, the all round white should also be a minimum of 1 meter above the red/green. Dsc is not compulsory but there is little point in buying one without. Al useful stuff.
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Old 06 January 2004, 08:13   #3
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Radar reflector should be carried (see SOLAS requirements).

http://www.mcga.gov.uk/c4mca/solas.pdf

Under 7m & not exceeding 7 knots - should have an all-round white light. As you're likely to exceed 7 knots, red/green needed too.

I believe the coastguard has already stopped monitoring Ch 16. Originally, the cut-off date was later but then it changed! DSC therefore very useful!

IMHO, I would recommend attending RYA training - Power Boat Level 2 to begin with. I found it really helpful and the instructor will know all the regs in detail. Also, if you have a radio one of you must have a licence to operate - VHF Short Range Operator's Licence.

Sorry if I'm teaching granny to suck eggs!
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Old 06 January 2004, 09:05   #4
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I am unconvinced that a radar reflector is worthwhile on a smallish RIB. The engine is only a foot below it. Most boats don't monitor their radars anyway (esp smaller boat) so it would make little difference showing up on it.
The regs have always been somewhat unclear on RIBs as boats that size and speed don't clearly fall into a catergory for either all round white or white and both colours.
The general scheme usually used on RIBs is either a pole mounted Tricolour or if an A frame is fitted a red, green and white set or a tricolour in the middle of the frame.
DSC is coming but they still monitor 16 up here for the moment.
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Old 06 January 2004, 09:09   #5
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Ginger Coastie by give a deffinate anser on the coast guard situation, but my understanding is that they don't use dedicated headset operators but a load speaker in the ops room to monitor channel 16, so it wil still be monitored, thank fully.

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Old 06 January 2004, 09:16   #6
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Quote:
I believe the coastguard has already stopped monitoring Ch 16
My understanding is they still very much listen to Channel 16 but have ceased the requirement to have one operator sitting doing nothing but listen to Channel 16 on a headset. Strikes me as logical really and more flexible way to allocate resources as at some times there is no traffic to speak of whatsoever.

Quote:
....need for a radar reflector, ...... upgrading to DSC
The little pamphlet Lester linked to pretty much covers it - it very much applies to leisure craft . The view initially seemed to be "if you can fit a radar reflector you should do" this has been clarified to - even if you can't fit one you should carry one that can be deployed if necessary. DSC becomes mandatory on small commercial vessels from Jan 05.

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Old 06 January 2004, 09:25   #7
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Thanks Pete & Paul for clarifying the listening watch stuff.

BTW, I'm Louise - not Lester!!

Paul - please could you clarify the lights situation - I thought only sailing vessels should show tricolors (at the masthead)?
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Old 06 January 2004, 09:47   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rupert Bear
I am unconvinced that a radar reflector is worthwhile on a smallish RIB.
I'm utterly convinced that a radar reflector is absolutely bugger all use on a small RIB! (Through common sense and uncontrolled trials involving a number of <5m RIBS and a decent Raymarine radar.) The only purpose for carrying a radar reflector IMHO is as a sop to your insurance company and the MCGA in the event that you are involved in an accident. (Although whether you were using it or not may be a moot point.) I suspect the way things are going in the Nanny State the list of stuff we'll have to carry will only increase. Bigger RIBS allround then!
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Old 06 January 2004, 10:14   #9
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So, the Coastguard are still monitoring 16 then if there's soembody in the room with a loadspeaker? I would hope so as I doubt the majority of boaters have DSC yet.

Robert
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Old 06 January 2004, 10:14   #10
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I got into some really thick fog this summer in the Baltic - approaches to Copenhagen and got out the emergency reflector. It is blown up and flies like a kite behind the boat at slow speed, which is all we could do but we were at least complying and on the edge of a busy shipping lane with other vessels doing likewise. We were at least equipped and compling - wether we showed up on a radar screen who nows, but we were boarded later the next day and I was able to welcome our boarding party in the confidence of having all the right stuff.

Happy ribbing
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