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Page Title: Steering and Sailing Rules
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made to revise and simplify them. Following the signing of the 72 COLREGS, a new effort was made to unify and update the various Inland Rules. This effort was also aimed at making the Inland Rules as similar as possible to   the   72   COLREGS.   The  Navigation  Rules, International-Inland,  COMDTINST  M16672.2B  now in effect, is the result. Inland   Rules   vary   from   International   Rules primarily because of the addition of certain extra precautions. In our discussion of basic rules, each rule stated  is  the  same  for  both  international  and  inland waters unless a distinction was pointed out. When the term power-driven vessel was mentioned, for example, it meant in both International and Inland, any vessel propelled  by  machinery  as  distinguished  from  a  sailing vessel. The  basic  rules  concerning  displays  of  navigational lights were given in chapter 2. STEERING AND SAILING RULES You must understand the steering and sailing rules and be able to apply them to various traffic situations. Although all Rules of the Road are important, the steering and sailing rules are the most essential to know to  avoid  collision.  The  risk  of  collision  can  be considered to exist if the bearing of an approaching vessel  does  not  appreciably  change. NOTE When  you  are  approaching  a  very  large vessel, or when you are in close quarters, a bearing change alone does not necessarily mean that  a  collision  cannot  happen. We will illustrate the three situations in which the danger of collision might exist: head-on, crossing, and overtaking. The illustrations and the following summary will help you learn the rules and appropriate actions to be taken in each situation. Meeting (Head-On) Situation When two ships meet head on, or nearly so (fig. 5-14), each ship must change course to starboard and pass port to port. In international waters, a whistle signal is sounded only when a course change is actually made. If the meeting ships are already far enough off each other to pass clear on their present courses, no signal is sounded. Figure  5-14.–Meeting  (head-on)  situation. Crossing  Situation When two power-driven vessels are crossing so as to involve risk of collision (fig. 5-15), the vessel having the other to starboard is the give way vessel and must avoid the stand on vessel. A   sailing   vessel   has   the   right-of-way   over power-driven vessels except when the sailing vessel is overtaking and the power-driven vessel is engaged in fishing, is not under command, or is restricted in its ability  to  maneuver. Figure  5-15.–Crossing  situation. 5-19

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