The Pecking Order

There is a "pecking order" that can be used as a simplified memory aid to determine right of way for vessels of different types. Get very familiar with this list, as it is important to understand it thoroughly. The lower most vessel on the list is the give way vessel, and must stay out of the way of vessels that are higher on the list.

  • Overtaken vessel (top priority)
  • Vessels not under command
  • Vessels restricted in their ability to maneuver
  • Vessels constrained by draft
  • Fishing vessels engaged in fishing, with gear deployed
  • Sailing vessels
  • Power driven vessels