Administrative Code

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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

4VAC15-390-90. Duty where operator's vision obscured.

A. Where an operator's vision is obscured by bridges or other obstructions ahead, or by sharp bends in a narrow waterway, or by fog or other weather conditions, the vessel shall be operated at reduced speed such that the vessel can be stopped, if necessary, within the distance the operator or a lookout is able to see ahead.

B. When the operator detects by radar alone the presence of another vessel, he shall determine if a close-quarters situation is developing or risk of collision exists. If so, he shall take avoiding action in ample time, provided that when such action consists of an alteration of course, so far as possible the following shall be avoided:

1. An alteration of course to the left for a vessel forward of the other vessel, other than for a vessel being overtaken; and

2. An alteration of course directly or nearly so toward the other vessel.

C. Except where it has been determined that a risk of collision does not exist, the operator of every vessel who hears apparently forward of his position the fog signal of another vessel, or who cannot avoid a close-quarters situation with another vessel forward of its position, shall reduce his speed to the minimum at which the vessel can be kept on course. He shall if necessary stop and, in any event, navigate with extreme caution until danger of collision is over.

Statutory Authority

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

Historical Notes

Derived from VR325-04-3 § 9, eff. July 1, 1973; amended, Virginia Register Volume 19, Issue 5, eff. January 1, 2003.

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