Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Fact Finding Friday Animation 11.3

Right. Lets combine a couple of things. I've made a animation from a incident on the water here in Muscat.
It was a little bit tricky because one boat hardly moves at all, but I did the best that I could.
The rules are under addendum Q direct judging and the Blue boat protested right after position 10. There was serious damage to the hull of Blue. The left top corner of the stern of the port hull was breached an a hole circa 5 centimetres was opened. They could finish the race, and it had no effect on their speed, but the boat had to be repaired before it could race again the next morning.

I'll give you one fact already. There was 5 to 6 seconds between completion of the tack by Blue and the collision.

Please write the facts found, a conclusion and a decision as if you were not on the water, but sitting in the protest committee, hearing about this incident after the races, in the room.
And don't forget about rule 14


  1. Jos

    On the subject of addendum Q, I have been unable to find any manuals or other information on the best practices for carrying out fleet umpiring.

    Is it possible to write some posts, in the near future, giving advice on how to use addendum Q?

  2. There should be some information on the ISAF Website. But now the first ESS (Act1) has been sailed I will post about the addendum we use here.

  3. I’m sorry – my English is very short (little) & is very bad. Therefore I don’t write full (all) the facts found and all conclusions.
    1. At the moment then B (Blue) completes the tack on starboard Y (Yellow) was not move.
    2. Y (on port tack) begins movement ahead then she appeared abeam B and being on distance near 0,5BL.
    3. Y tries bear away but there is a contact and damage to B.


    B has no opportunity avoid a contact after Y start move ahead. Therefore B not broke the rule 14 (see r.14 (a)).
    Y starting move onto collision course no keeps clear of B it is broke the rule 10 and the rule 14.

    The Rules that are apply: 10, 13, 14

    Y is disqualified from race.

  4. Facts Found

    1. Initially, B, on port, and Y on starboard were sailing close hauled towards Mark W, with Y two hull lengths from the mark, one length below the starboard tack layline and B about six hull lengths directly downwind of the mark.

    2. Y began to tack and passed head to wind with her bow about half a hull length from the mark. Y lost speed and began to fall astern during her tack.

    3. B began to tack above the starboard tack layline and passed head to wind as she reached the zone and before Y reached a close hauled course.

    4. Y, making almost no way through the water, reached a close hauled course on port tack a little before B, having slowed in the tack, but still maintaining normal boatspeed reached close hauled, with the bows of the boats about a hull length apart.

    5. After she reached a close hauled course Y continued to bear away slowly, and initially to gather way.

    6. B luffed a little above her course, increasing the separation between boats slightly.

    7. B was passing ahead of Y, when Y rapidly accelerated and hit B on the aftermost part of her leeward hull, causing serious damage.

    8. The collision took place not more than 6 seconds after B reached her close hauled course.

    9. Y could have avoided contact by not accelerating so fast, or by bearing away further to pass astern of B.

    10. B finished the race, and the damage had no effect on B’s speed.


    A. If Y, on port, had maintained the slow speed she had at the time B reached a close hauled course on starboard and became the right of way boat, she would have kept clear of B by a clear margin and there would have been no need for B to take any action to give Y room to keep clear as required by rule 15. The collision was caused by Y’s sudden acceleration, not by B’s failure to give Y room to keep clear.

    B. Y on port tack did not keep clear of B on starboard tack. Y broke rule 10.

    C. .Y did not avoid contact with B when it was reasonably possible to do so. Y broke rule 14.

    D. It was not reasonably possible for B to avoid contact with Y. B did not break rule 14.

    E. There was serious damage to B, caused by C breaking rules 10 and 14, but this did not make B’s score significantly worse. B is not entitled to redress under rule 62.1(b).


    Y is disqualified.

  5. Facts found:

    1. The Zone was established as 3BL.

    2. Yellow and Blue were on a beat to round the windward mark to port.

    3. Yellow on starboard tack was leading by 6 BL and was 2 BL to windward of Blue on port tack.

    4. Yellow, inside the Zone and tracking 1/2 BL below the mark, luffed head-to-wind 2 BL before the mark and lost way in irons at the mark.

    5. Blue continued her approach on port tack, closing the distance between the two boats.

    6. Yellow passed beyond head-to-wind, tacking onto port tack, and lost all headway.

    7. Moments later Blue began to tack when at the starboard tack layline and 3 BL from the mark.

    8. After passing head-to-wind Blue momentarily checked his turn, delaying completion of his tack.

    9. While drifting aft, Yellow fell off to a port tack closehauled angle without headway.

    10. Two seconds later Blue achieved closehauled course on starboard tack with good residual speed, 2BL from the mark and 1 BL from and bow-to-bow with Yellow.

    11. As Blue continued her course crossing Yellow, Yellow on port tack gained headway on a collision course.

    12. Yellow bore off toward Blue's stern, but gained speed

    13. Contact was made between Yellow's port bow and Blue's port stern resulting in minor damage.


    Yellow on starboard and Blue on port approach the windward mark on a beat. [10]
    RRS 18 does not apply.

    Yellow luffs up and passes beyond head-to-wind. Yellow must keep clear of all other boats. [13]

    Blue still on port tack closes the distance between the two boats, then luffs up and passes head-to-wind toward Yellow and the mark. Blue must keep clear of all other boats. [13]

    Both boats are tacking simultaneously side by side with Yellow on Blue's port side. Both boats are subject to RRS 13 at the same time, therefore Yellow shall keep clear of Blue. [13]

    Yellow achieved a closehauled angle without headway on port tack and gains right of way over Blue [13], but subject to RRS 15.

    Due to the nature of the catamarans and their proximity, Blue can neither luff up nor tack to keep clear of Yellow. Yellow must allow Blue her only option which is to maintain her starboard tack course and speed to clear Yellow's intended path.

    Two seconds after Yellow's completion, Blue achieves her closehauled course with good residual speed. Blue, while proceeding to keep clear of Yellow, gains right of way over Yellow [10], subject to [15].

    Yellow gained headway, fell off to a close reach to take Blue's stern. However five seconds after completing her tack, Yellow's port bow struck Blue's port stern resulting in damage.

    Neither boat took a Two Turns Penalty or a Scoring Penalty at the time of the incidents.


    Yellow, coming out of her tack, gained right of way over Blue.
    However, in violation of RRS 15, Yellow accelerated and failed to give Blue room to keep clear.
    As Blue's position and actions were fully visible to Yellow, Yellow was required to avoid contact with Blue.
    In violation of RRS 14, Yellow failed to avoid contact when it was possible for her to do so and damage resulted.
    Yellow is disqualified for violation of RRS 14 and 15.

    When Blue gained right-of-way as starboard tack boat, subject to RRS 15, Yellow was already obligated to give Blue room to keep clear, so no additional action was required of Blue to comply with RRS 15.
    Given the position of Blue vis-a-vis a motionless Yellow and Blue's sole means of getting clear, it was not reasonably possible for Blue to keep clear of Yellow if Yellow accelerated toward her. Blue is not in violation of RRS 14.

  6. Facts Found

    Yellow, a catamaran, close hauled on stbd enters the zone of a mark to be rounded to port. Yellow is not fetching the mark as she is about 1 boat length below the lay line. At two boat lengths from the mark (pos 3) Yellow luffs up and at one boat length from the mark, makes a very slow tack onto port losing almost all headway. She completes her tack to port at position 7 with almost no headway and bares off and begins to accelerate.

    Blue, also a catamaran, is approaching the mark on port about three boat lengths below the port layline and some distance astern of Yellow. As Blue reaches the zone (pos 6) she begins to tack and completes a fast tack (pos 8) just inside the zone and one boat length above the stbd lay line.

    About 5 to 6 seconds after Blue completes her tack, and now on stbd sails across the bow of Yellow on port, contact occurs between the port hull bow of Yellow and the port hull aft of Blue. There is significant damage to Blue but both boats completed the race and finished and Blue’s performance was not affected by the damage.


    Applicable rules 10, 13, 14, 15.

    Yellow ahead and on the port side of blue, started to tack and before the tack was complete, blue started to tack. While they were tacking at the same time, neither boat interfered with the other. Neither broke R 13.

    Yellow completed her tack to port and moments later, Blue completed her tack to stbd, making Blue ROW R10, About five to six seconds later. as Blue was crossing ahead of Yellow, Yellow accelerated and hit Blue. Blue was not required to anticipate that Yellow would accelerate and had no opportunity to keep clear when Yellow accelerated. Yellow on port could have delayed accelerating to allow Blue on stbd to clear. Yellow is in breach of R 10.

    Blue presented no evidence that her finish was materially affected by the collision and there was no request for redress,


    Yellow is DSQ under R 10.

  7. Jos, what my comment?

  8. Facts found
    1. Y, approaching the windward mark to be rounded to port, at one boatlength from the mark began to tack from starboard to port tack, but lost her speed and remained between head-to-wind and port tack close-hauled course for 15-25 seconds just below the starboard layline.
    2. During that time B on port tack close-hauled course crossed behind Y and then tacked to starboard at three boatlength from the mark and one boatlength above the starboard layline.
    3. At the moment when B reached close-hauled course on starboard tack, her bow was half a boatlength from Y who was still almost motionless on B's port side.
    4. 5 to 6 seconds later Y, who accelerated on port tack, with the bow of her port hull hit the top of the stern of B's port hull.
    5. The collision opened a 5 cm hole in B's hull.
    6. When it became clear to B that Y was not going to keep clear, there was one second left until the collision.
    7. Both boats finished the race.

    1. The contact caused serious damage.
    2. Y on port tack did not keep clear of B on starboard tack. Y broke rule 10.
    3. Y could have avoided the contact by accelerating later. Y broke rule 14.
    4. It was not reasonably possible for B to avoid contact. B did not break rule 14.

    Y to be scored DSQ for breaking rules 10 and 14.

  9. The rest of the comments will be posted next Friday.

  10. Facts found

    1. Yellow and Blue were on a beat to windward. Yellow on starboard tack. Blue, on port, passing astern of Yellow.
    2. Yellow and Blue tacked.
    3. Yellow reached a close hauled course on port before Blue reached a converging close hauled course on starboard.
    4. Blue had lost momentum in the tack and was almost stationary.
    5. Both boats accelerated. Yellow bore off approximately 5 degrees and Blue held her course.
    6. 5 to 6 seconds after the completion of Blue’s tack, there was contact between the bow of Yellow’s port hull and the left top corner of the stern of Blue’s port hull.
    7. The contact created a hole 5 cm in diameter in Blue’s hull, which had no effect on her performance.
    8. Both boats finished the race and neither took a penalty.


    1. Yellow on port did not keep clear of Blue on starboard and broke rule 10.
    2. When Blue acquired right of way, on starboard tack, she initially gave Yellow room to keep clear, and complied with rule 15.
    3. It was reasonably possible for Yellow to have avoided contact. She broke rule 14.
    4. When it was apparent that Yellow would not keep clear, it was not reasonably possible for Blue to avoid contact. Blue did not break rule 14.
    5. Yellow caused serious damage and was required to retire. By failing to do so she broke rule 44.1(b).

    Rules applicable

    10, 14, 15, 44.1(b)


    Yellow is DSQ


    One of the questions raised in this problem is when, and to what extent, should we refer to rules that aren’t broken.
    My conclusions 2 and 4 stated that Blue did not break rules 14 and 15. Many of the facts found were mentioned for the purpose of supporting those conclusions. Was it necessary to go into that?
    On the other hand, I made no mention of the mark (other than facts relevant to rule 18.1(a)). As rule 18 didn’t apply, the mark seemed irrelevant. Should I have mentioned the mark and rule 18?
    Is there a rule of thumb to give guidance on what rules to refer to? Should rules, that don’t apply, be referred to in the protest committee’s decision, if parties to the protest erroneously rely upon them?

  11. I have a question that is not clear from the diagram. At positions 7, 8 is the sail of Yellow luffing or trimmed?


  12. In most of the comments the Yellow boat was DSQ-ed under rule 10. I can certainly understand that.
    A few decided that is was Blue not giving room to Yellow under rule 15. That is also a decision that can be defended. (And it was the way we judged it on the water when Blue called on this incident)
    Interesting is however how we finally decided on rule 14. There was damage, so both could be penalized for it. Consider this: When Yellow hit blue it was on the very end of her port hull. One second more and nothing would have happened.
    As row boat Blue could never have foreseen that the collision would occur > for Blue is never became clear that Yellow would not keep clear and therefore she never had an obligation to act to avoid contact.
    No rule 14 infringement
    Yellow was moving very very slowly forward before Blue completed her tack. She had no steerage, her rudders were flat out to bear away, in other words she did everything reasonable possible in those circumstances to avoid the contact. And that is what rule 14 demands. So again, no infringement of rule 14

    Please remember that although Yellow accelerated - a little - at the end, that was for her the only way to get some grip on the rudders to steer. She was already moving forward....

    I realise with this exercise I should not expect the impossible - you are not able to question witnesses, you have only the diagram. And although I did my very best the boats still 'wobble' a little :-)

    @Boris: Never mind the language, you got enough facts to support your conclusion and decision.

    @Brass: We got a different outcome, but your FF, C and D are consistent and thorough. I can understand why you came to this.

    @Philip: My suggestion to you is that you should try to avoid facts in your Conclusion and should try to make the Conclusion and the Decision much much shorter.
    Cut to the heart of the matter, so to speak.

    @ball_hilary (John). Same goes for you. A decision should be worded like in Agnes' or John G's protests. One sentence / rule with wording from that rule.

    @Agnes: Very good. Only decision 1 should be in Facts Found.

    @John G: I would leave conclusions and rules that are not broken out if possible. That's as a rule of thumb, of course there are exceptions.


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