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News & Events

Queens Harbour Master Portsmouth No 59 of 2018

Date: to Sunday, 12 August 2018

1. NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN jointly by the Queen’s Harbour Master Portsmouth and the Harbour Master, ABP Southampton, to advise mariners that the annual Cowes Week Regatta will be held between 4 and 11 August 2018.  During this period heavy concentrations of sailing vessels of all types will be racing in The Solent, in the approaches to Cowes Harbour and Southampton Water and within The Precautionary Area in Southampton Water.  Mariners should be particularly vigilant and should maintain an efficient lookout for large vessels and sailing vessels and, at all times, should navigate with extreme caution in the area.

2.  Start and Finish Lines. Race starts on the ‘Royal Yacht Squadron Line One (RYS Line 1)’, which extends from the RYS flagstaff northwards to ‘Lendy Alpha’ (8A) buoy are planned to commence, in general, at 1000 BST each day and will continue until the last group start at 1215 BST each day. If conditions demand, RYS Line 2 may be used. This will be between the RYS flagstaff and Lendy Beta (8B).
A second start line, named ‘the Bramble Line’, will be established south of the Bramble Bank, marked by two Committee Boats, one anchored in the vicinity of the Williams Shipping buoy and the second in a position approximately 400 – 500 metres to the south. 
A third start line, “RYS Outer Line” will be between Lendy Alpha buoy and Williams Shipping buoy (see chartlet).

3. Additionally, a Committee Boat start line will be established daily; the location to be decided daily prior to racing. The Lendy Cowes Week website (address below) should be checked for exact positions and timings daily.  

4. Race finishes on the above lines may take place from approximately 1400 BST onwards and most racing is expected to have finished by 1600 BST daily. In addition to the lines above, the Breakwater finish line may be utilised, this is between Lendy Gamma (8G) and a Committee boat moored south of this mark (see chartlet).

5. Sailing mark buoys to be established. Two large, yellow, cylindrical, inflatable marks, ‘Lendy Alpha’ and ‘Lendy Gamma’, and one large orange, cylindrical, inflatable mark, ‘Lendy Beta’ will be laid in the approaches to Cowes Harbour,  as follows:

i) Lendy Alpha – 4.0 cables West Southwest (254o True) of Prince Consort buoy, position 50 46.29’N, 001 18.13’W. The buoy will have a yellow light, flashing every 3 seconds. This marks the northern end of the Royal Yacht Squadron start line for day boats and the RYS finish line for both Black and White Groups.
ii) Lendy Beta – 9.1 cables West Southwest (255o True) of Price Consort Buoy, position 40 46.29’N, 001 18.29’W. The buoy will have a yellow light, flashing 2 every 4 seconds. This marks the northern end of the Royal Yacht Squadron second start line for day boats.

iii) Lendy Gamma – 4.3 cables East Southeast (104o True) of Prince Consort Buoy, position 50 46.25’N 01 17.62’W. The buoy will have a yellow light, flashing 3 every 6 secs. This marks the northern end of the Shrape start and finish line for both Black and White Groups.

6. The above buoys will be laid shortly before 04th August and will be removed on 12th August, or soon thereafter. Additionally, should one of the two Committee Boats on the Bramble Line not be on station, a large, orange, inflatable cylindrical mark will be laid in its place as required.

7.  The Precautionary Area. Mariners are advised that ABP Southampton Notice to Mariners No 3 of 2016 (Port of Southampton – Precautionary Area (Thorn Channel)) is in force and provides advice on the tracks followed by large vessels through The Precautionary Area in various tidal conditions (www.southamptonvts.co.uk).  As detailed in NTM No 3 of 2016, the Southampton Harbour Master’s Patrol Launch (VHF Call Sign ‘’SP’’ – watching VHF Channel 12) will precede all vessels over 150 metres in length overall within The Precautionary Area showing, in addition to the normal steaming lights, an all round blue light.  Additionally, the patrol launch will, whenever possible, be accompanied by 2 RIBs to assist with the escort of large vessels through the Precautionary Area.  The RIBs will be flying blue flags with ‘Harbour Master’ in white lettering and whilst in this role are representing the Harbour Master ABP Southampton.

8. As permitted by the International Sailing Federation Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS 42.3 (h) – (i)) a boat may use her engine, or other means of propulsion, without retiring, to avoid the risk of collision with commercial shipping that is underway.  Thus, boats are advised to have an alternative means of propulsion ready for immediate use if there is any possibility of a close quarters situation developing between them and a commercial vessel.     

9. Within the Precautionary Area, all instructions given by ‘SP’ or the accompanying RIBs should be acknowledged and promptly carried out.

10. Cowes Week Firework Display – Speed Restriction

To ensure an orderly departure from the Cowes area following the Firework Display, at 2130 on Friday 10th August, a maximum speed limit of 15 kts will be imposed on all commercial and leisure vessels throughout Southampton Water. The speed restriction will take effect between 2130 and 2300 BST. The only craft exempted from this restriction will be the Red Funnel, Red Jet high-speed vessels, which will indicate their presence by illuminating their quick flashing yellow identification lights during the above period. A 15 kt speed limit will also be imposed within the Dockyard Port of Portsmouth waters for all vessels transiting east from Cowes towards Portsmouth. The eastern limit of this 15 kt area will be a line between Nettlestone Point at Seaview and Southsea Castle. The only vessels exempt from this restriction are the Hovercraft and Wightlink Catamarans. 

11. Cancel this Local Notice to Mariners 12 August 2018.