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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 4. Conservation And Natural Resources
Agency 15. Department of Wildlife Resources
Chapter 390. Watercraft: Safe and Reasonable Operation of Vessels

4VAC15-390-11. Definitions.

For the purpose of this chapter, except where the context otherwise requires, the following words and terms mean:

"Inland waters" means the navigable waters of the United States shoreward of the navigational demarcation lines dividing the high seas from harbors, rivers, and other inland waters of the United States on the United States side of the International Boundary.

"Left" means port, or the left side of the vessel when facing the bow (the forward part of the vessel) from within the vessel.

"Length" and "breadth" of a vessel mean her length overall and greatest breadth.

"Power-driven vessel" means any vessel propelled by machinery.

"Restricted visibility" means any condition in which visibility is restricted by fog, mist, falling snow, heavy rainstorms, sandstorms, or any other similar causes.

"Right" means starboard, or the right side of the vessel when facing the bow (the forward part of the vessel) from within the vessel.

"Sailing vessel" means any vessel under sail provided that propelling machinery, if fitted, is not being used.

"Seaplane" includes any aircraft designed to maneuver on the water.

"Secretary" means the secretary of the department in which the U.S. Coast Guard is operating.

"Underway" means that a vessel is not at anchor, or made fast to the shore, or aground.

"Vessel" means every description of watercraft, other than a seaplane on the water, used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on water, but does not include surfboards, tubes, swimming rafts, inflatable toys and similar devices routinely used as water toys or swimming aids.

"Vessel engaged in fishing" means any vessel fishing with nets, lines, trawls, or other fishing apparatus that restricts maneuverability, but does not include a vessel fishing with trolling lines or other fishing apparatus that does not restrict maneuverability.

"Vessel not under command" means a vessel that through some exceptional circumstance is unable to maneuver as required and is therefore unable to keep out of the way of another vessel.

"Vessel restricted in its ability to maneuver" means a vessel that from the nature of its work is restricted in its ability to maneuver as required and is therefore unable to keep out of the way of another vessel; vessels restricted in their ability to maneuver include, but are not limited to:

1. A vessel engaged in laying, servicing, or picking up a navigation mark, submarine cable, or pipeline;

2. A vessel engaged in dredging, surveying, or underwater operations;

3. A vessel engaged in replenishment or transferring persons, provisions, or cargo while underway;

4. A vessel engaged in the launching or recovery of aircraft;

5. A vessel engaged in mineclearance operations; and

6. A vessel engaged in a towing operation such as severely restricts the towing vessel and her tow in their ability to deviate from their course.

"Vessels in sight of one another" shall be deemed so only when one can be observed visually from the other.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501, 29.1-502, 29.1-701, and 29.1-735 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 19, Issue 5, eff. January 1, 2003.

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