When a sailboat is approaching a powerboat, which boat is the give-way vessel?

My answer to When a sailboat is approaching a powerboat, which boat is the give-way vessel?

Answer by Desmond Last:

Powerboat owners tend not to have the experience of Yacht owners. Even though in most instances power gives way to sail it is not a good idea to place yourself in the position where it is too late to take avoiding action.

The bigger the Power boat the longer it wil take them to avoid you and their wash could swamp you.

A 40′ power boat hurtling towards is not going to hear you yelling at them above their engine noise.

Engine noise from a pair of twin diesels at 25 knots is above conversation level. it is also likely that when they are on the plane their vision is restricted.

My advice is to steer clear of power boat lanes and to be ready to take avoiding action.

In Sydney Harbor the Ferry’s have right of way and will carve slowly and carefully through a flotilla of yachts as they unable to steer quickly to port of starboard becasue of their size.

The bigger the powerboat the longer the time it will take for them to avoid hitting you.

Most will give way but always be prepared for the ones that do not. In a busy shipping lane keep your engine idling or motor-sail so you can power out of trouble.

Safety Tip: Be prepared for the wash from powerboats. Make sure in-experienced crew and children are secure.

When a sailboat is approaching a powerboat, which boat is the give-way vessel?

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