Fog and Sound Signals

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          Work on these until they are memorized.


  1. Never set out in fog.
  2. When underway and fog settles in, immediately reduce speed.
  3. Chart progress on the chart frequently as appropriate - always know where you are.
  4. Turn on the radar, and start maintaining radar watch on range of 3 miles of less
  5. If necessary to maintain or control progress, turn on the engine.
  6. Put on PFDs, with tethers if rough weather.
  7. Listen on the VHF to Channel 16 and 13 in Scan mode.
  8. Post a lookout on the bow to Look AND Listen for vessel and buoy sounds, breakers, and shore noises.
  9. Person in cockpit also Looks AND Listens for overtaking vessels. Wear (family radio) headphones to communicate with lookout on the bow.
  10. Idle the engine periodically to make it easier to listen.
  11. Make the appropriate sound signals as indicated below.

(II) SOUND SIGNALS IN FOG ( Put these symbols on the Air Horn or can of air. Carry a spare can.)

  1. Long. Under power, making way (sound every 2 minutes)
  2. Long, long. Under power, not making way (sound every 2 minutes)
  3. Long, short, short. Towing, fishing, restricted ability to maneuver, sailing, and NUC (sound every 2 minutes)
  4. Long, short, short, short. Manned vessel being towed (sound every 2 minutes)
  5. Bell for 5 seconds At anchor (sound every minute)
  6. Short, short, long. You are running into danger (also 5 shorts)


  1. Short. I am altering course to starboard
  2. Short, short. I am altering course to port
  3. Short, short, short. I am going in reverse
  4. Long, long, short. I am going to overtake you on your starboard
  5. Long, long, short, short. I am going to overtake you on your port side
  6. Long, short, long, short. I agree to your overtaking on the side indicated
  7. 5 shorts. Danger


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This page was last modified on:
August 9, 2009