Waypoint Amsterdam Sailing School

The Collisions Regulations for yachties

International Regulations for Avoiding Collisions at Sea or IRPCS. The rules are specified in great detail in the regulations and the serious student is encouraged to seek the definitive document. Certain individuals are legally required to carry or possess a copy of the rules, such as the owners and/or operators of certain vessels. These legal requirements vary by jurisdiction. Consult the appropriate maritime authorities for each jurisdiction. Any individual subject to such requirements should obtain a complete, official copy from a government or official source. However, the rules are summarized below.

Part A - General

Part B - Steering and Sailing Rules

Section I - Conduct of Vessels in any Condition of Visibility

Section II - Conduct of Vessels in Sight of One Another

Section III - Conduct of Vessels in Restricted Visibility

Part C - Lights and Shapes

(a) A power driven vessel underway shall exhibit:

(i) a masthead light forward;

(ii) a second masthead light abaft of and higher than the forward one; except that a vessel of less than 50 meters in length shall not be obliged to exhibit such a light but may do so;

(iii) sidelights: and

(iv) a sternlight.

(b) An air-cushion vessel when operating in non-displacement mode shall, in addition to the lights prescribed in paragraph (a) of this Rule, exhibit an all-round flashing yellow light.

(c)

(i) A power driven vessel of less than 12 meters in length may in lieu of the lights prescribed in paragraph (a) of this Rule exhibit an all-round white light and sidelights.

(ii) a power driven vessel of less than 7 meters in length whose maximum speed does not exceed 7 knots may in lieu of the lights prescribed in paragraph (a) of this Rule exhibit an all-round white light and shall, if practicable, also exhibit sidelights.

(iii) the masthead light or all-round white light on a power driven vessel of less than 12 meters in length may be displaced from the fore and aft centerline of the vessel if centerline fitting is not practicable, provided the sidelights are combined in one lantern which shall be carried on the fore and aft centerline of the vessel or located as nearly as practicable in the same fore and aft line as the masthead light or all-round white light.

 

Part D - Sound and Light Signals

Part E - Exemptions