Friday, 3 April 2009

Fact Finding Friday | 006 - Manila Morning v Nicosia Night

From “the Room” by Brass.


The aim of this series is to practice judges' skills in writing Facts Found, Conclusions and Rules Applicable, and Decisions as required by rule 65.1. These are not intended to be 'difficult' rules problems: concentrate on the writing skills. You are not expected to 'discuss' the rules or the scenarios, or enter into 'what-if' considerations. I suggest you write against the clock, and include a note of your time taken when you post your answers on LTW, to compare with others.

Hearing and Evidence

You are the scribe for the protest committee of the LTW Yacht Club, which races in Port Liberty Roads. You have received a written protest, decided it is valid, and have heard both parties and witnesses.

You have listed Facts Found and the protest committee members have agreed to endorse the attached diagram:



Purple Manila Morning

Orange Nicosia Night

Facts Found

  1. Manila Morning and Nicosia Night (4m dinghies) on starboard tack at about 4kts approaching a windward mark to be left to starboard.
  2. Boats were overlapped, with Manila Morning, the inside boat slightly ahead.
  3. Manila Morning hailed for mark-room and Nicosia Night replied ‘Will be given when needed’.
  4. When Manila Morning was 6m from the mark contact occurred, without damage or injury.
  5. Manila Morning protested Nicosia Night for not giving mark-room when Manila Morning had asked for it.


Write Conclusions and Rules Applicable, and the Decision for this protest. Here is another opportunity to try your speed on just Conclusions and Decision.

Dick, it will save you time if you don’t regale us with your tales of the European nobility or the Wild West (much as we enjoy them).

Please post your effort on LTW, for us all to share and learn. Don't be shy.



Dick, in case you are feeling melancholy, because you’ve been curtailed in your endeavors, visit the following site; the Dutch Queen of the “smartlappen” will help you to overcome it:

If you look hard enough you’ll find the Mandolins from Nicosia

JmS (lol)



    The contact occurred while MM and NN were sailing to the mark.

    MM was entitled to Mark Room, rule 18.2(b).

    NN was ROW boat, rule 11.

    MM was not the right of way boat and was taking more room than she was entitled to under 18.2(b)

    MM to windward did not keep clear of NN to leeward. MM broke rule 11.

    It was reasonably possible for MM to avoid contact with NN. MM broke rule 14.

    When NN, did not act to avoid contact with MM, NN was the right of way boat and the contact did not cause damage or injury. NN may not be penalized under rule 14.

    DSQ MM rules 11 and 14.

    Time to deliberate and write the conclusions and decision, 31 minutes. And I did not have a scribe. I wrote everything myself.

  2. Conclusions

    1. MM had room to sail directly to the mark: MM therefore had markroom.
    2. MM as the windward boat, failed to keep clear of NN to leeward.

    Rules applicable

    11, 18.2, definition of markroom


    MM's protest against NN is dismissed.
    MM, as a party to that protest, is dsq

    Time taken: 3 minutes

  3. MM V NN

    MM and NN were on starboard tack overlapped approaching a windward mark to be left to starboard.
    The boats had been 1.5 lengths to leeward of the mark, separated by less than a boat width approaching the Zone.
    When in the zone NN maintained a close-hauled course and MM fell down on her till a collision occurred.

    11 MM failed to keep clear of NN
    18.2.b MM took more room than the mark room she was entitled to.
    18.5 Having taken more room than the mark room she was entitled to MM cannot be exonerated.
    64.1.c MM was not compelled to break a rule and cannot be exonerated under this rule.
    14. As there was no damage or injury MM and NN cannot be penalised under this rule.

    Disqualify MM RRS11

  4. Brass

    Is it possible to get some feedback for last week's exercise?

  5. Feedback

    We still have a couple of 'rules discussions' in Conclusions. If you are going to state a conclusion that MM broke rule 11, then this implies that 'NN was ROW boat under rule 11', so it is unnecessary to write that.

    If there is contact we should decide whether or not either or both boats broke rule 14, and whether or not either or both gains protection under rule 14(b) or exoneration under rule 64.1(c), and explicitly state conclusions about this.

    Don't forget that rule 14(b) protects a boat that is entitled to room or mark-room as well as a right of way boat, so where a right of way boat must give room or mark-room, both boats can have rule 14(b) protection.

    I'm not sure what John G meant when he concluded that 'MM had mark-room'. Did that mean 'NN gave MM mark-room to which she was entitled'? But given that John G knocked the problem off in just 3 minutes, a slip-up is understandable.

    Thanks to all participants.


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