Race Signals

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Race Signals

Race Signals


Railway Pier Williamstown

Presented By David Wallace


Where does the Code of Signals come from?

The first public commercial code (there were earlier private semi-commercial codes, as

used for instance by the East India Company) was the "Code of Signals for the Merchant

Service". This was produced in 1817 by Captain Fredrick Marryat, R.N. as the result of

problems experienced by ships of the Royal Navy trying to communicate with merchant

ships in convoy. It was a numeric code for British ships only, based upon the "Signal Book

for Ships of War", which had been introduced for all ships in the Royal Navy in 1799. It

was modified with words more appropriate for commercial use.

Ships of other countries began using it, and in 1854, when the 12th edition was

published, it was re-titled, "The Universal Code of Signals".

In 1855 the British "Board of Trade" decided that maritime signals needed to be

regulated, and authorised the publication in 1857, of the "Commercial Code of Signals".

This was an alphabetical code and a considerable improvement on Marryat's code.

It was re-named the "International Code" in about 1870, and revised in 1901 and 1934.

There was another revision to the Code in 1969 but mainly to sections dealing with

electronic communication.


Race signals

Sail races are governed with flags and sound signals

to indicate flag changes. The flags used are taken

from the International Maritime Code of Signals flag

set. During a race and for any signal concerning the

race, these flags are defined in the ISAF Racing

Rules of Sailing, but the signal can be modified by

the Sailing Instructions.

The raising (hoisting) or removing of a visual signal

is accompanied by the emission of a sound signal to

“draw attention” to the new signal. The type of the

sound signal (one short sound, two short sounds,

one long sound, etc.) is described by the rule

according to the type of signal.


Signal flags that have been added to Race SI,s for various reasons

The “follow me” flag used by RYCT to signal we are leaving the

dock and going to the start area. The course was quite big due to

variations in wind and tide and the boats did not have motors.

Coach and Jury Flags to clarify which power boats were

permitted on the course area


Postponement signal

The Answering Pennant (AP) with or without a numerical pennant is used to indicate a

postponed race. A numerical pennant below the AP denotes the time, in hours, of the race

postponement.

Flag signal

Number

of sound

signals

when

raised

Number

of sound

signals

when

lowered

Description

AP Races not yet started are postponed.

AP

1

AP

2

AP

3

AP

A

AP

H

Races not yet started are postponed 1 hour.

Races not yet started are postponed 2 hours.

Races not yet started are postponed 3 hours.

Races not yet started are postponed. No more racing today.

Races not yet started are postponed. More information ashore.


Preparatory signal

These signal flags are used before a race start and most commonly as part of a start

sequence/procedure.

Flag signal

P

I

Z

I

Z

black

Number of

sound

signals

when

raised

Number of

sound

signals

when

lowered

Description

Normal preparatory signal - no starting penalties are in effect. A boat over

the line at the start can return through the line or round an ends but must

keep clear of boats not returning. If they fail to return through the line

however they will be scored OCS

The Round-an-End Rule 30.1 will be in effect. A boat over the line during

the minute before the start must sail to the pre-start side of the line around

either end before starting. If they fail to do this they will be scored OCS

The 20% Penalty Rule 30.2 will be in effect. A boat within the triangle

formed by the ends of the line and the first mark during the minute before

the start will receive a 20% scoring penalty

Both the I flag rule and the Z flag Rule will be in effect during the minute

before the start. If they fail to round and end then they will be scored OCS

The Black Flag Rule 30.3 will be in effect. A boat within the triangle formed

by the ends of the line and the first mark during the minute before the start

will be disqualified without a hearing


Start signal

These signal flags are used in the pre-start procedure. Class flags can be numeral

pennants 1

Flag signal

,


P ↑

P ↓

Number

of sound

signals

when

raised

Number

of sound

signals

when

lowered

Long sound

Description

Warning Signal. 5 minutes to race start when class flag

raised. (R flag is combined divisions in RYCV SIs.)

Preparatory signal. 4 minutes to start when P flag raised.

Flag P used or if a starting penalty applies I, Z, Black flag or

I over Z is used in place of P.

Preparatory signal. P flag removed 1 minute before start.

Flag P used or if a starting penalty applies I, Z, Black flag or

I over Z is used in place of P. Usually a horn or whistle.

↓ Start Signal. Race start when class flag removed.


Flag signal

X

1st

Sub

Number

of sound

signals

when

raised

Number

of sound

signals

when

lowered

Recall signal

Description

Individual recall.

One or more boats did not start correctly and must return

back and do a proper start. The X flag is displayed until the

earliest of the following: all boats over the line early have

returned correctly, 4 minutes from the start or until one

minute before the next start. (The sound signal is in addition

to the start sound signal)

General recall.

All boats are to return and then a new start sequence will

begin. Signalled when there are unidentified boats over the

line or subject to one of the starting penalties, or there has

been an error in the starting procedure. The new warning

signal for the recalled class will be made 1 minute after the

1st substitute is removed. (The two sound signals when the

first substitute is displayed are in addition to the start sound

signal)


Flag signal

S

C

Number of

sound

signals

when raised

...

Number of

sound

signals

when

lowered

Description

Shortened Course.

When displayed at a rounding mark the finish is between the

nearby mark and the mast displaying the S flag. When displayed

at a line that boats are required to cross at the end of each lap the

finish is that line. When displayed at a gate the finish is between

the gate marks.

Course Change.

When displayed at a rounding mark, the position of the next mark

has been changed. If the direction to the mark has changed it shall

be indicated by displaying the new compass bearing or a green

triangular flag (or board) for a change to starboard or a red

rectangular flag (or board) for a change to port. If the length of

the leg has changed then this shall be signalled by displaying a "-"

if the leg will shorter or a "+" if the leg will be longer. Repeated

sound signals should be made to draw attention to the signal.


On Station Flag

I am on station and ready to take any sign-on requests as

per S.I.s.

A start sequence will be made soon. ( not less that 5 mins )

All sighting of the start line are taken between this flag and

the Pin end buoy.


Flag signal

N

N

A

N

H

Number of

sound

signals when

raised

Abandonment signal

Number of

sound

signals when

lowered

Description

All races that have started are abandoned. Return to starting area for a

new start. The first warning signal will be made 1 minute after N is

removed.

All races are abandoned. No more racing today.

All races are abandoned. More information ashore.


Flag signal

L

M

Y

Number

of sound

signals

when

raised

...

Number of

sound signals

when lowered

Other signals

Description

When displayed afloat means: Come within hail or follow this boat.

When displayed ashore means: A notice to competitors has been posted.

Indicates a boat or an object displaying this signal replaces a missing

mark.

Repeated sound signals should be made to draw attention to the signal.

All people on board should wear a personal life jacket or personal

buoyancy.

BLUE When displayed the race committee boat is in position at the finishing line.


Alfa Diver Down; Keep Clear

Bravo Dangerous Cargo

Charlie Yes

Delta Keep Clear

Echo Altering Course to Starboard

Foxtrot Disabled

Golf Want a Pilot

Hotel Pilot on Board

India Altering Course to Port

Juliet On Fire; Keep Clear


Kilo Desire to Communicate

Lima Stop Instantly

Mike I Am Stopped

November No

Oscar Man Overboard

Papa About to Sail

Quebec Request Pratique

Romeo

Sierra Engines Going Astern


Tango Keep Clear of Me

Uniform Standing into Danger

Victor Require Assistance

Whiskey Require Medical Assistance

X-ray Stop Your Intention

Yankee Am Dragging Anchor

Zulu Require a Tug


What flag am I ?


Akuna 4 off Pt Lonsdale

“I am the pilot boat”


1st Substitute Repeat First Flag

2nd Substitute

3rd Substitute

Repeat Second Flag

Repeat Third Flag


.

Phew ! What flag am I


The Church Pennant

History

The origin of the broad pennant combination of the English Flag

at the hoist and the Dutch National Flag in the fly originating from

the Anglo- Dutch wars of the late 17th century on Sundays to

indicate that a church service was in progress and a ceasefire

existed between the warring nations

This may not be the true story of the origin of this pennant.

But is still considered one of the oldest unchanged flags in the

Naval flag signal locker.


Code End of Message / Decimal

Zero

One

Two

Three

Four

Five


Six

Seven

Eight

Niner


Answer: I am in distress

What do these flags all have

in common?


So we can figure out what

signals are these or what we

need to use.

Or can we ?

A flag (blue and white flag) means a diver below. See next slide

to figure out the other 2 signs.


Proceed at slow speed when

passing. LOW WASH Please

Multiple letter hoists

I am undertaking underwater survey

work. Keep Clear and low wash


Gin Flag

As per most of the navies of the Commonwealth

The End

Thankyou for your interest

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