When Approaching Other Boats

^ Normally, motorboats should keep clear of sailboats.

^ Motorboats and sailboats must stay out of the way of vessels not under command and vessels engaged in fishing.

^ Sailboats using auxiliary (backup) engines operate under the same rules as motorboats.

^ Sailboats should keep out of the way of other sailboats to prevent the risk of collision.

^ Sailboats and boats propelled by oars and paddles usually have the right-of-way over motorboats, because they are harder to maneuver.

^ Sailboats and paddle craft should not interfere with large vessels, other power boats or "working" boats such as fishing vessels and dredges.

^ Large, deep-draft vessels in narrow channels have the right-of-way because they cannot maneuver easily and may have limited visibility. Avoid large ships by staying out of the way, remaining visible, maintaining a lookout, knowing the signals, anchoring in safe places, and using the radio.

^ Be especially alert if you are sailing in a deep-water channel or port, because a large ship can "steal your wind."

^ Pulling a water skier in a heavy-use area means you need to be extra cautious.

Use common sense, extra caution and boating skill when

• Visibility is poor because of fog, rain, bright sun or other reasons.

• The operator of the oncoming boat is not following the standard rules of navigation or is operating the vessel recklessly.

• Operating your vessel in heavy-traffic areas.

Approaching a Blind Bend

^ When your boat is approaching a

^ Motorboats shall keep to the

blind bend, you should signal with

starboard (right) side of the

one prolonged (4 to 6 seconds)

bend or channel whenever it's


safe or practical.

^ An oncoming boat should return

the signal.

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