Maritime Rules Part 22 – Collision Prevention

Rule 22.15

Maritime Rules Part 22 – Collision Prevention
Judge Davis questions Bolton – “Isn’t this precisely what Rule 22.15 is all about, it says “get out of the way?”
Bolton explains – “But with M Pigneguy thinking Seaway was a stand-on vessel from as far back as he liked to take it – if he was standing –on, this wouldn’t have happened. In this event he wasn’t standing –on but coming towards me incrementally such that it couldn’t be detected & that’s against Rule 22.8.2 … Rule 22.15 only applies when risk of collision begins to exist”
Judge Davis – “Well can I just discuss that with you briefly because being the most ill-informed about the rules, doesn’t Rule 22.15 contemplate a situation immediately before there’s a risk of collision, in other words, doesn’t Rule 22.15 say you have to avoid a situation where a risk of collision occurs, not a situation where wait until a risk of collision arises & then take evasive action, isn’t the rule saying you’ve got to act well before that risk of collision situation arises?”

Analysis of that question certainly reveals Judge Davis’ confusion
1: Rule 22.15 doesn’t contemplate a situation before there’s a risk of collision – it says “When 2 vessels are crossing so as to involve risk of collision, the vessel having the other on its starboard side must keep out of the way.”
2: It doesn’t say a vessel has to act before risk of collision exists.
3: For vessels which will not create risk of collision if they keep on their  respective courses & speed, Rule 22.15 doesn’t apply.

Bolton – “To simplify, I’ll say at no stage on my passage did risk of collision exist & certainly not at photo 1.”
Judge Davis – “Well I’ll have to decide Mr Bolton, whether there was a risk of collision at Photo1 or whether there was a risk of collision at Photo  2 or may have developed somewhere between Photo 2 & 3. But isn’t the Rule 22.15 saying if I decide that – hypothetically speaking – if a risk of collision had arisen by photo 2, doesn’t the rule say you had to have taken evasive action before the situation in Photo 2 even arose?”
Bolton – “No because at that point there was still the expectation that the ferry was going to go to Auckland.”
Judge Davis – “But we’ve just established it wasn’t on its Regular Run, it was doing something unexpected, irregular, out of the ordinary & what I’m saying is, isn’t the real nub of Rule 22.15 saying you should have taken, the onus was on you to have taken evasive action before the point where risk of collision arose?”
Bolton explains – “There was no risk of collision before the point at which the ferry should’ve gone to Auckland. At that point it was still assessed  by me as no risk of collision because he could still carry on the course he was on & safely pass me astern.”
Judge Davis becomes irrational – he’s just been told that even if Seaway didn’t turn to Auckland, it could keep a straight course & pass astern of Classique but apparently the significance of that is not understood – “How do you know that the ferry was actually going to Wynyard Wharf, how do you know that it wasn’t going up to my neck of the woods in the Bay of Islands?”

Bolton perseveres –“It doesn’t really matter where he was going because at that point & the point before that he was still not entitled to turn towards me at all. He was meant to be on 286* & the fact that he was coming up was not his entitlement.”
Judge Davis asks – “Can you just clarify what do you mean by ‘coming up?”
Bolton – “Coming towards me, turning towards me in small increments when he says he’s a stand-on vessel & is maintaining his course & speed but he’s already come from 286* to 292* at the point of taking of the 1st Photo.”

                                        Judge Davis didn’t get the picture
Maritime Rules Part 22 - Collision Prevention,2014-09-21_2103


Maritime Rules Part 22 – Collision Prevention







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