As a part of group presentation, alongwith classmates, prepared and presented our coursework on selected collision regulations.
- 1. Rules 13-17 of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea Group 1: Maeve, Rajeev, Rahul, Rowena Maritime Law
2. Introduction Convention on the International Regulations for preventing Collisions at Sea, 1972 First International Maritime conference on regulations 1889 at Washington Adopted by US and UK, in 1897 1910 Brussels Conference Remained in force until 1954 1954, 1972 Amendments Last major amendments Oct.1972/ Came in force 1977 Ratified by159 Countries Objective: Prevent Collisions and to minimise their effects Obligation: To give effect to the rules and other annexes 3. Introduction United Kingdom : Statutory instrument Merchant Shipping (Distress Signals and Prevention of Collisions) Regulations 1996 Under the authority of Sec. 81/ MSA 95 Singapore: Merchant Shipping Act (Ch. 179/ Sec. 208) Extract from Relevant Court judgment To show how the rules are interpreted. 4. Collision Regulations Collision Regulations are broken into five parts. Particularly relevant to liability for collision are: Part B Steering and sailing Rules (Rules 5 to 19/ Divided in 3 sections) and Part D Sound and Light Signals (Rules 34 to 36) Starboard (Right/ Green) and Port (left/ Red) 5. Rule 13 Overtaking Rule 13 Overtaking (a) Notwithstanding anything contained in the rules of Part B, Sections I and II, any vessel overtaking any other shall keep out of the way of the vessel being overtaken. (b) A vessel shall be deemed to be overtaking when coming up with another vessel from a direction more than 22.5 degrees abaft her beam, that is, in such a position with reference to the vessel she is overtaking, that at night she would be able to see only the sternlight of that vessel but neither of her sidelights. Takes precedence over Rules 12 to 18 Prime responsibility for keeping out of way is allocated to the overtaking vessel Head On Port Starboard Crossing Crossing 22.5 22.5 Overtaking 6. Rule 13 Overtaking (c) When a vessel is in doubt as to whether she is overtaking another, she shall assume that this is the case and act accordingly. (d) Any subsequent alteration of bearing between the two vessels shall not make the overtaking vessel a crossing vessel within the meaning of these rules or relieve her of the duly of keeping clear of the overtaken vessel until she is finally past and clear. Situation 1 Situation 2 Baines Hawkins Moilere (1893) Overtaking rule applied Aurigua Manuel Campos (1977) Distance too great to apply overtaking ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------x---- 5 nmile ----------------------------------- ---------------------------------------------------------------x----- 1 nmile ----------------------------------- 7. Rule 13 Overtaking In Olympian Nowy Sacz, 1977, Court of Appeal: Once an overtaking vessel, always an overtaking vessel (Marsden/ 13th Ed./ Pg. 260) Overtaking in narrow channels and traffic lanes The Admiralty Court in The Ore Chief (1974) concluded: It was not seamanlike for Ore Chief to overtake Olympic Torch because the two ships were large vessels entering a narrow and shallow stretch of river after having made a turnshe should have reduced speed for good seamanship required that overtaking should have been postponed. 8. Rule 14 Head-on situation Rule 14 Head-on Situation (a) When two power-driven vessels are meeting on reciprocal or nearly reciprocal courses so as to involve risk of collision each shall alter her course to starboard so that each shall pass on the port side of the other. Applicable to Power-driven vessels only Equal responsibility for keeping out of the way on each of two vessels involved Alter course to starboard Course is direction of ships head and not the course made good Court decisions on Nearly reciprocal course: 6 of being opposite ALTER COURSE TO STARBOARD 6 9. Rule 14 Head-on situation (b) Such a situation shall be deemed to exist when a vessel sees the other ahead or nearly ahead and by night she could see the masthead lights of the other in a line and/or both sidelights and by day she observes the corresponding aspect of the other vessel. (c) When a vessel is in doubt as to whether such a situation exists she shall assume that it does exist and act accordingly. When a vessel is in doubt whether a meeting or crossing situation or is in doubt whether the approaching vessel is an ordinary power-driven vessel or a hampered vessel, she shall assume that Rule 14 applies and alter course to starboard. Avoid altering course to port when in doubt whether crossing or head-on 10. Rule 14 Head-on situation The British Engineer Karanan (1945): British Engineer was blamed for altering course to port in an head-on situation. Lord Merriman held that , As to the British Engineer that she was to blame for porting (she was on a duty to pass port to port in the channel, and she should have appreciated why the green of Karanan was exposed); as to the Kananan, that she was negligent in regard to her look-out, but she was to blame for hard-a-starboarding at full speed when she saw that the British Engineer was committed to a port swing Apportionment : Kananan 2/5th, British Engineer 3/5th Karanan British Engineer 11. Rule 16: Action by the Give-way vessel Rule 16 Action by Give-way vessel Every vessel which is directed to keep out of the way of another vessel shall, so far as possible, take early and substantial action to keep well clear. It overlaps with rule 8(c), which provides for any action to be made in ample time and with due regard to the observance of good seamanship In The Billings Victory (1948), Wilmer J. held: The duty of give-way vessel is to take timely action to keep clear. Moreover it is her duty to acthandsomely, so as to leave stand-on vessel in no possible doubt as to what the give-way vessel is doing. In The Maloja II (1993), Sheen J. said: The structure of the collision regulations is designed to ensure that, whenever possible, ships will not reach a close quarter situation in which there is risk of collision and in which decisions have to be taken without time for proper thoughtManoeuvres should be such as to be readily apparent to the other ship 12. Rule 15 Crossing Situation Rule 15 Crossing Situation When two power-driven vessels are crossing so as to involve the risk of collision, the vessel which has the other on her own starboard side shall keep out of the way and shall, if the circumstances of the case admit, avoid crossing ahead of the other vessel. Apply to power driven vessels (PDV) Not applicable when either both or one of the PDVs : Hampered such as RAM, NUC etc. In narrow channels and TSS PDVs must comply with this reg. in crossing situations The requirement to avoid crossing ahead applies only when risk of collision exists. Not applicable at long ranges (King Stephen Ashton/ 1905) Stand-on vessel Give-way Vessel 13. Rule 15 Crossing Situation Alter to starboard/ Pass astern of another vessel Stop engines/ Allow the stand-on vessel to pass ahead For vessels approaching near stbd. beam from close distance, alter to port/ Take a complete round and pass from astern 14. Rule 17 Action by Stand-on vessel Rule 17 Action by stand-on vessel (a) (i) Where one of two vessels is to keep out of the way the other shall keep her course and speed. (ii) The latter vessel may however take action to avoid collision by her manoeuvre alone, as soon as it becomes apparent to her that the vessel required to keep her out of the way is not taking appropriate action in compliance with these rules. Keep Course and speed According to Sheen Justice in The Angelic Spirit (Angelic Spirit Y Mariner/1994), When a stand-on ship takes action as permitted by rule 17 (a) ii, it must to bold action and it does not make the matter worse. (b) When, from any cause, the vessel required to keep her course and speed finds herself so close that collision cannot be avoided by the action of give-way vessel alone, she shall take such action as will best aid to avoid collision. Rule 12, 13, 15 and 18 require one of two vessels to keep out of the way 15. Rule 15 & 17 (c) The power-driven vessel which takes action in a crossing situation in accordance with sub paragraph (a)(ii) to avoid collision with another power-driven vessel shall, if the circumstances of the case admit, not alter course to port for a vessel on her port side. (d) This rule does not relieve the give-way vessel of her obligation to keep out of the way. Avoid turning to port to avoid collision with another power driven vessel The Topaz and Irapua  EWHC 320: Irapua (Give-way) (From Necochea to Fortaleza) Topaz (Stand-on) (From Mohammedia to Ponta Ubu) 16. The Topaz and Irapua (2003) Topaz Irapua Irapua Topaz Failed to comply with Rule 5 (lookout), Rule 7 (Risk of collision), Rule 8 (Action to avoid collision), Rule 15 (Crossing situation), Rule 16 (Action by give-way vessel) - Serious fault Failed to comply with rule 17 a (ii) or 17 b. Basis blameworthiness and causation, apportionment was 80/20 in favour of Topaz. Principle issue : Whether Irapua was alone to blame for the collision or whether Topaz was at fault and if so to what extent? 17. Conclusion In maritime cases, Each case is to be taken in the round and the faults of each ship weighed in balance before an apportionment is made. In another case of Haugland v Karamea (1922), The House of lords emphasised that in apportioning liability under the act (Maritime Conventions Act 1911) only faults that contributed to the damage or loss should be taken into account. In apportioning liability the degree of culpability and causative potency of all relevant faults must be taken into account (per Lord Brandon, Tulane Law Review 1977) 18. Bibliography Howard Bennett, Maritime Law, Course Notes 2013. Simon Gault, Steven J. Hazelwood, 2003. Marsden on Collisions at Sea. 13th ed. London: Sweet and Maxwell A N