Distance from a buoy at night.

At night, it can be very difficult to estimate the distance you are away from a buoy. The danger in this is that it is very easy for the helmsman to close in on the buoy, it being the only thing to focus the attention on, then be swept on to it by the tide.

This is especially likely if the tide is behind the vessel.

The two clues that you are getting close to the buoy are:

  • At about 1/2 mile, the light of the buoy rises up off the sea.

  • At about 200m, the light begins to reflect on the surface.

Once you can see the light reflecting in the water, ensure that the buoy is moving relative to the background.

If the buoy is unlit, treat it like a rock, if you hit one, it could sink the boat. Don't go anywhere near it!




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