COLREG in easy language (Rule 14)

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Rule 14 Head-on situation 

(a) When two power-driven vessels are meeting on reciprocal or nearly reciprocal courses so as to involve risk of collision each shall alter her course to starboard so that each shall pass on the port side of the other.


Always alter course to starboard when you see a ship approaching you from ahead.

The ship does not need to be exactly ahead – Rule 14 applies to any vessel coming towards you on a roughly opposite course and roughly within half a point (6 or 7 degrees) on either side of your bow.

At night, if you can see ahead of you the other ship’s masthead lights in line, or nearly in line, and/or both its sidelights, then Rule 14 applies. If you are not sure, then Rule 14 still applies.

Do not wait for the other vessel to act. The closer you get, the bigger the alteration you will have to make.

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