Friday, 22 April 2011

ISAF Q&A 2011-008; The answer

You remember we send in a Q&A about a situation that happened in ESS Act 1 in Oman?
If not read this post:

The Q&A Panel came back with an answer:

The boats are fast moving multihulls. Addendum Q applies and decisions are made on the water by the umpires. In position 1 Yellow asks for room to tack. In position 3, Red responds ‘You tack’. Shortly after position 5 there is contact between Red and Blue and they both protest.

What are the rights and obligations of the three boats? And what should the decision be?

When Yellow hails for room to tack, Red only has two options for responding. By choosing to respond ‘You tack’ she is responsible for giving Yellow room to complete her tack and then avoid Blue. Therefore, if Yellow breaks rule 13 during the tack or rule 15 immediately after the tack is completed, she will be exonerated under rule 20.2. If Yellow does not respond by tacking as soon as possible, she will break rule 20.1(c).

When Blue gets to the breakwater, Yellow is tacking boat and not an obstruction. The breakwater is an obstruction and Red, who is overlapped to windward of Blue, must keep clear of Blue and give Blue room for the obstruction.

When Red bears away in position 4 to avoid contact with Yellow, Yellow is a keep-clear, tacking boat and not an obstruction. When Blue then bears away to avoid contact with Red, Red fails to keep clear as windward boat and breaks rule 11. Red’s only option to comply with the rules once she has chosen to respond ‘You tack’ to the hail from Yellow is to tack as soon as possible herself.

Once Yellow’s tack is completed she becomes right-of-way boat. Because both Red and Blue must keep clear of Yellow when her tack onto starboard is completed, Yellow becomes an obstruction for both boats. Yellow must initially give Blue room to keep clear of her under rule 15. Blue gets that room. However, if Yellow breaks rule 15 with regard to Red, Yellow will be exonerated under rule 20.2.

Although Red and Blue have been overlapped for some time, it is not possible for Blue to give Red room at this new obstruction. Blue is compelled to break rule 19.2(b) because of Red’s breach of rule 11 before Yellow became an obstruction, and Blue is therefore exonerated under rule 64.1(c). Red however, was not compelled to break rule 19.2 and the umpires should penalize Red for breaking rule 19.2. Red also breaks rule 14.

I'm happy we made the right decision on the water, but a little disappointed not the receive an answer regarding the "from the moment the overlap occurred" issue. Nevertheless the logic in the rules is flawless.

1 comment:

  1. They do decide the question about "from the time the overlap began" because they say Blue broke 19.2b. This implies that Blue did not receive the "unable" exception.

    They do not specify what earlier opportunity Blue had to comply with 19.2b, though.

    Red's breach of 11 forced Blue into a course where Blue would become the outside boat when the obstruction appeared. Did this compel Blue to break 19.2b merely by creating a situation where the rule applies?


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