Boats provide an excellent opportunity for people to enjoy the water and the stunning scenery that is often found along coasts and rivers. However, boating at night is not the same as boating during the day; in addition to the challenges of reduced visibility, boaters must be aware of obstacles in the water and other boats. One essential feature of a boat that is easier to recognize at night is the presence of navigational lights.? Yes, boats must have specific navigational lights that are easily recognizable, especially at night. These lights come in a different color, intensity, and size, which enable other boaters to perceive the vessel’s position and movement. They are not merely decoration but offer a critical layer of safety that is very vital in ensuring safe and enjoyable boating experiences at night.
The navigation lights on a vessel come in three colors: red, green, and white. The red light should be mounted on the port side of the boat and shows other boaters that it is approaching from the left. Similarly, the green light is fitted on the starboard side of the boat to indicate that it is approaching from the right. The white light is installed on either the stern or masthead and signifies the vessel’s presence in the water.
It is crucial to note that not all boats must have the same navigation lighting requirements. The size and type of the boat, as well as where it operates, determine each vessel’s lighting needs. For example, a canoe does not need to have a navigation light, but a powerboat that is over 23 feet, as well as a sailboat that is over 7 meters, does need a navigation light system. These lights must be illuminated from sunset to sunrise and during times of restricted visibility (such as during fog or heavy rain).
Navigational lights are compulsory for all watercraft, including boats to enhance safety when navigating the waters at night. Not only do they indicate a boat’s presence and movement, but they also help avoid any potential collisions with other watercraft. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that your boat has the required lights and that they are functioning correctly at all times. Always remember, prevention is better than cure.