notices to Navigation equipment
 

 

 

 

Navigation equipment


 

Magnetic Compass

06.10#00


A magnetic compass will assist the operator of a pleasure craft to determine a direction and hold a course.

A magnetic compass can be influenced by the close proximity of metal and electrical devices and wires, and could provide false information.

When onboard a craft, avoid placing metal objects close to the compass.   Be cautious with clothing which may contain metal parts. It is best to keep all objects clear of the compass.

You should be aware that a magnetic compass points to the "magnetic" north pole, which is different from the "true" north pole. Maps and charts are based on "true" north. The difference in degrees from the true north pole varies as you move to different locations in the world. (This is know as magnetic variation.)

If you undertake further study, you will learn how to compute a "true" direction from a "magnetic" direction and vice-versa. Many modern GPS navigation receivers will do this computation for you automatically.


 

Watertight Flashlight

06.11#00


wpe20.jpg (17226 bytes) Almost every boat is the required to carry a watertight flashlight. In the event of an electrical failure the watertight flashlight may be your only means of signalling for help.

A watertight flashlight qualifies as navigation lights on non-powered vessels less than 7 metres.

Check that the batteries are at a proper charge level and have a spare set of batteries at hand.


 

Sound-signalling Devices and Appliances

06.12#00


wpe2A.jpg wpe2B.jpg To comply with the Collision Regulations, sound-signalling devices are required for all vessels under
12 m, if they are not fitted with a sound signalling appliance. Sound signalling devices can be a pealess whistle, compressed gas horn or electric horn.

wpe2C.jpg wpe2D.jpg A vessel 12 m and over requires a whistle under the Collision Regulations while a vessel 20 m and over requires a bell in addition to a whistle. The bell and whistle must meet the technical criteria described in the Collision Regulations for frequency and audible range.

Sound signalling equipment is used to communicate maneuvering, to alert others of your presence in areas of restricted visibility and to draw attention in emergencies.

See the sound signalling chart for details on signals.


 

Radar Reflectors

06.13#00


wpe2F.jpg (9518 bytes)Radar reflectors are required under the Collision Regulations. Radar reflectors are a valuable piece of safety equipment because, properly positioned, they help larger, less manoeuvrable vessels detect your presence on their radar screens. A radar reflector is required for vessels less than 20 metres in length and for all non-metal vessels.  Locate reflectors as high as possible above all superstructures and at least 4 m above the water (if practical).

You are not required to carry a radar reflector in limited traffic conditions, daylight, and favourable environmental conditions and where compliance is not essential for the safety of the vessel, or the small size of the vessel or its operation away from radar navigation makes compliance impracticable.


 

Nautical Charts and Topographic Maps

06.14#00


Charts and various publications such as Notices to Mariners, Sailing Directions, and the List of Lights, Buoys and Fog Signals, are required under the Charts and Nautical Publications Regulations . Small craft charts are not regularly updated.  Please consult Notices to Mariners, published by the Canadian Coast Guard, Department of Fisheries and Oceans, for chart updates and corrections or the Current Edition Listing on the Canadian Hydrographic Web site. 

Charts (Paper and Electronic)

Charts are graphic representations depicting water areas, including depths, underwater hazards, traffic routes, aids to navigation and adjacent coastal areas.

Charts are intended primarily for the use of mariners to assist with navigation.

In Canada, charts are published by the Canadian Hydrographic Service, Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

For U.S. waters, charts are published by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Topographical Maps

Topographical maps are maps of land areas depicting natural and artificial features of the land, including elevation contours, shoreline, rocks, land features above water, and cultural features.

They are intended primarily for the use of the general public on land.

In Canada, topographical maps are published by Natural Resources of Canada and some provincial authorities.

Topographical maps are sometimes used where there are no "Charts" available, but they do not depict:

  • underwater hazards
  • marine aids to navigation
  • channels
  • anchorage areas

 

Navigation Lights

06.15#00


wpe2E.jpgNavigation lights are required under the Collision Regulations if a vessel operates at night (sunset to sunrise) or in restricted visibility such as fog.   If the vessel has navigation lights, they must work and be fitted in accordance with the Collision Regulations.   Navigation lights must be visible at appropriate distances based on the length of the vessel.   Refer to Rule 22 in the Collsion Regulations for details.

Recognition of the various light types and their various configurations allows an operator to determine the vessel type at night and take the appropriate right-of-way action.

For example, if you are a power boat and you see a green sidelight and a single white light on your port side it means that you have right-of-way,   while the other vessel will see your red port sidelight and white all-round light (or masthead light) on it's starboard side and must give-way.

 

Lights and Shapes

Be aware of the following items in Collision Regulations.

A "masthead light" means a white light placed over the fore and aft centerline of a pleasure craft showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of 225 degrees and so fixed as to show the light from right ahead to 22.5 degrees abaft the beam on either side of a pleasure craft.

 

"Sidelights" means a green light on the starboard side and a red light of the port side each showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of 112.5 degrees and so fixed as to show the light from right ahead to 22.5 degrees abaft the beam on its respective side.       Memory aid:     port wine is red.

 

"Sternlight" means a white light placed as nearly practical at the stern showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of 135 degrees and so fixed as to show the light 67.5 degrees from the right aft on each side of a pleasure craft.

 

"All-round light", white, means a white light showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of 360 degrees.


 

"All-round light", green, means a green light showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of 360 degrees.


 

"All-round light", red, means a red light showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of 360 degrees.


 

 

"Towing light" means a yellow light having the same characteristics as the "Sternlight" defined above and identifies a vessel engaged a towing operation.

 

"Flashing light" means a light flashing at regular intervals at a frequency of 120 flashes or more per minute.

 

"Special flashing light" means a yellow light flashing at regular intervals at a frequency of 50 to 70 flashes per minute, placed as far forward and as nearly as practicable on the fore and aft centreline of a vessel and showing an unbroken light over an arc of the horizon of not less than 180 degrees nor more than 225 degrees and so fixed as to show the light from right ahead to abeam and not more than 22.5 degrees abaft the beam on either side of the vessel.

 

"Blue flashing light" means a blue all-round light flashing at regular intervals at a frequency of 50 to 70 flashes per minute.

 

  Review of Lights above.

 

Light Rules

An understanding of the various light configurations below allows an operator to determine the vessel type at night and take the appropriate right-of-way action.


From sunset to sunrise, the operator of a power pleasure craft underway shall exhibit a masthead light forward, sidelights, and a sternlight.

In lieu of the requirement above, from sunset to sunrise, the operator of a power pleasure craft less than 12 metres in length may exhibit an all-round white light and sidelights.

From sunset to sunrise, the operator of a pleasure sailing craft underway shall exhibit sidelights and a sternlight.

In lieu of the requirement above, from sunset to sunrise, the operator of a pleasure sailing craft less than 20 metres may exhibit a combined sidelights and sternlight in one lantern carried at or near the top of the mast.

For pleasure sailing craft underway less than 7 metres in length, sidelights and a sternlight should be exibited from sunset to sunrise if practicable.
If not, the operator should have ready at hand an electric torch, flashlight, or lighted lantern showing a white light which shall be exhibited in sufficient time to prevent collision.

The operator of a pleasure craft under oars (rowboat) may exhibit sidelights and a sternlight from sunset to sunrise.   Alternately, the operator should have ready at hand an electric torch, flashlight, or lighted lantern showing a white light which shall be exhibited in sufficient time to prevent a collision.

When at anchor from sunset to sunrise, the operator of a pleasure craft less than 50 metres in length shall exhibit in the fore part an all-round white light.

Blue Flashing Light

Any authorized vessel that is engaged in law enforcement duties or providing assistance to a vessel in distress may exhibit as an identification signal a blue flashing light. This includes various police and Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary vessels.

Towing, Towing Light

In the case of a power-driven vessel towing another vessel from her stern, the towing vessel must exhibit:

  1. Sidelights and sternlight.
  2. Towing light (yellow light with the same characteristics as the sternlight).
  3. Two masthead lights in a vertical line (three of these lights if the tow exceeds 200 metres).
  4. A diamond shape where it can best be seen, if the tow exceeds 200 metres.

In the case of a vessel being towed, it must exhibit:

  1. Sidelights and sternlights.
  2. A diamond shape where it can best be seen, if the tow exceeds 200 metres.
  3. If it is impractical for the vessel being towed to comply with the lights stated above, it shall carry one all-around white light at each end (fore and aft).

Tugs may be towing barges or other ships on a long tow-line astern.  Often, the length of the tow is so great that the tow-line hangs below the surface of the water and is virtually invisible.  If a small vessel strikes the submerged tow-line it could capsize and then be run down by the barge. Never pass between a tug and its tow and make sure you are aware of the special lights displayed by tugs towing barges or other vessels or objects.

When a vessel not normally engaged in towing operations is towing another vessel in distress or need of assistance, the towing lights described above are not required to be displayed.   All possible measures should be taken to indicate the nature of the relationship between the towing vessel and the vessel being towed, in particular by illuminating the towline.

Pushing, Special Flashing Light

A vessel being pushed in the waters of the Great Lakes Basin shall exhibit a special flashing (yellow) light at the forward end of the vessel in addition to sidelights.

Trawling

A vessel when engaged in trawling, (which means the dragging through the water of a dredge net or other apparatus used as a fishing appliance), will exhibit:

  1. two all-round lights in a vertical line, the upper being green and the lower white, or a shape consisting of two cones with their apexes together in a vertical line one above the other,
  2. a masthead light abaft of and higher than the all-round green light;
    a vessel of less than 50 metres in length shall not be obliged to exhibit a masthead light but may do so,
  3. when making way through the water, sidelights and a sternlight.

Fishing

A vessel engaged in fishing, other than trawling, will exhibit:

  1. two all-round lights in a vertical line, the upper being red and the lower white, or a shape consisting of two cones with their apexes together in a vertical line one above the other,
  2. when there is outlying gear extending more than 150 metres horizontally from the vessel, an all-round white light or a cone apex upwards in the direction of the gear,
  3. when making way through the water, sidelights and a sternlight.

 

North Cardinal Buoy, Flashing Light

A North Cardinal buoy can be identified by a quick flashing (Q) white light (60 flashes per second) or a very quick (VQ) flashing white light (120 flashes per second).

Review.