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Waterway Sound Signals for Boats

Passing and Meeting 
Crossing Situations 
Overtaking Situations 


Passing and Meeting   (Head-on) Situations 


Boats Passing --
Port to Port

* not sounded in International waters
Marine sound signals for boats passing head-to-head port to port

Boats Passing --
Starboard to

* not sounded in International waters
Waterway sound signal for boats passing starboard to starboard

Boats Path Meeting --
Head to Head

Waterway sound signals for boats meeting head to head

 Boats Crossing Situation - Sound Signals

(in blue)
Boat safety for right-of-way in crossing situation. Red vessel
1 short blast
(1 sec.) *

* (not sounded
on International
vessel (in red)
holds course
and speed

Boats Overtaking Situation 

Inland Rules:
"I want to pass you on your
port side."  2 short blasts
(1 sec.) from blue vessel.

"Proceed" from red
vessel, 2 short blasts (1 sec.)

International Rules:
"I am altering my
course to port"
2 short blasts (1sec.)


Stand-on "Privileged" Vessel (in red) Being Overtaken
Boating safety for overtaking situation on waterway
Give-way "Burdened" Vessel
(in blue) Overtaking

Inland Rules:
"I want to pass you on your starboard side." 1 short blast (1 sec.) from blue vessel.

"Proceed" from red
vessel, 1 short blast
(1 sec.)

International Rules:
"I am altering my
course to starboard"
1 short blast (1 sec.)


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