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Who's responsible?


Davids

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So here's my dilemma. I have a permanent offside mooring with the boat at 90° to the canal. Opposite is a no mooring area. In order for me to get out of the mooring I need to use the full width of the canal. Since November 2020 there has been 3 boats moored in the No Mooring area, the boat directly behind mine is a fibreglass Norman.

 

Requests for them to move have been ignored and answered with threats and abuse. This has resulted in us giving up and resigning ourselves to not going anywhere. I'm now at a point where I need to get out to do some maintenance. CRT are no help!

 

So my question is, if I exit my mooring, crush the yogurt pot and it sinks, who is responsible? What legal recriminations could I face, if any?

 

Cheers

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Not premeditated at all, I am not intending to hit the boat, merely trying to find out where I stand should I hit it, but let me rephrase the question then.

 

Who is responsible if my boat sinks due to my not being able to exit my mooring to perform maintenance because there are boats moored in the No Mooring area

Edited by Davids
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But if the Norman is behind you, it is not his fault that you can't get out.

Suggest if the boats opposite refuse to move,slowly move out and put your bow between two of the moored boats,full rudder and reverse.

I am sure the moored boaters will co-operate when they see that you are serious about moving.

I think I have imagined the scenario correctly.

 

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1 minute ago, Neil2 said:

So you are saying that for almost two years there has been three boats permanently moored in a no mooring area yet CRT won't/can't do anything about it?

 

 

Not 2 years, 10 months but yes. Multiple complaints by locals about their behaviour but still CRT have done nothing. 

1 minute ago, Mad Harold said:

But if the Norman is behind you, it is not his fault that you can't get out.

Suggest if the boats opposite refuse to move,slowly move out and put your bow between two of the moored boats,full rudder and reverse.

I am sure the moored boaters will co-operate when they see that you are serious about moving.

I think I have imagined the scenario correctly.

 

I'm moored stern to the canal. I fail to see how it is not his fault, due to the set up I have to reverse in a straight line, touch the opposite bank then swing the bow around.

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4 minutes ago, Davids said:

Not 2 years, 10 months but yes. Multiple complaints by locals about their behaviour but still CRT have done nothing. 

I'm moored stern to the canal. I fail to see how it is not his fault, due to the set up I have to reverse in a straight line, touch the opposite bank then swing the bow around.

Ah right,I was assuming you were moored bow to the canal.

Would it be possible to move out using ropes? It will probably need two of you.

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Just now, Davids said:

Not 2 years, 10 months but yes. Multiple complaints by locals about their behaviour but still CRT have done nothing. 

 

Sorry about the brain fart, blame Covid-19 (everyone else does).

 

If you really do need every inch of the canal to get your boat out here's what I would do.

 

I would write - and I do mean write, not email, to CRT and send it by recorded delivery.  Explain to them that despite several complaints by you and others, these boats remain moored in clear contravention of their licence conditions.  Explain that you cannot access the canal whilst these boats remain moored in this area as you need the entire width of the canal to navigate safely.  Tell them that you need to move your boat for essential maintenance and that you intend to attempt to move it on xxxxx date and make that say 2 weeks away, but the longer the better.  Explain that you cannot guarantee that when you move your boat that there will not be an impact with one or more of these offending boats.  Say that it is the duty of CRT to enforce licence conditions which is why you are giving them enough notice to have these boats moved.

 

By doing this you are doing everything reasonable to avoid the risk of damage.  Should you then attempt to move your boat and collide with one or more of the offending boats no-one can claim that you have acted irresponsibly and IMHO you would not be liable in any way.

 

Of course you could go further and seek legal advice but in the end the law tends to favour the person who acts in a reasonable manner so if you do everything to make it clear that you are being reasonable, you put yourself in a safe position.

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Presumably there is some gap between your boat and those moored either side/the pontoon. If so I would imagine getting it as far out as is reasonable and then polling the stern to one side and moving back again and repeating would get you out. Maybe have a pole waver at the front as well so you can spin it i its own length.

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Some times a more direct approach can be required.

 

Get a couple of 'big' mates to help you carefully untie the offending boat, move it, remove your boat, carefully re tie the offending boat where it was.

 

Video the whole process on a phone to ensure no future claims for damage or poor re tieing come your way later.

 

Pi$$ takers often only understand such an approach.

 

Repeat on your return.

Edited by The Happy Nomad
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If you cannot use your boat, and have reported the matter to CRT, ask CRT to submit what they would consider to be reasonable compensation, as a refund, for every day you are unable to use the canal. When they have the means to help, and don't, they obviously are treating you like a monkey. 

 

 

 

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On 08/09/2021 at 15:24, Neil2 said:

 

Sorry about the brain fart, blame Covid-19 (everyone else does).

 

If you really do need every inch of the canal to get your boat out here's what I would do.

 

I would write - and I do mean write, not email, to CRT and send it by recorded delivery.  Explain to them that despite several complaints by you and others, these boats remain moored in clear contravention of their licence conditions.  Explain that you cannot access the canal whilst these boats remain moored in this area as you need the entire width of the canal to navigate safely.  Tell them that you need to move your boat for essential maintenance and that you intend to attempt to move it on xxxxx date and make that say 2 weeks away, but the longer the better.  Explain that you cannot guarantee that when you move your boat that there will not be an impact with one or more of these offending boats.  Say that it is the duty of CRT to enforce licence conditions which is why you are giving them enough notice to have these boats moved.

 

By doing this you are doing everything reasonable to avoid the risk of damage.  Should you then attempt to move your boat and collide with one or more of the offending boats no-one can claim that you have acted irresponsibly and IMHO you would not be liable in any way.

 

Of course you could go further and seek legal advice but in the end the law tends to favour the person who acts in a reasonable manner so if you do everything to make it clear that you are being reasonable, you put yourself in a safe position.

Thanks Neil, good advice, which I'll follow on this occasion, only thing is I can't see myself doing this everytime I want to get out. The fact it's a No Mooring should mean I shouldn't have to do it in the first place.

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On 08/09/2021 at 16:14, booke23 said:

You've had this trouble before. What happened in the end that time? Are your moorings private or CRT?

 

 

 

CRT moorings. The fire fighters got the fire under control and moving was thankfully unnecessary. As usual CRT did nothing. Not long after that boat moved off another 2 moored up and stayed there for TWO YEARS. How CRT allow this to go on is beyond me.

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On 08/09/2021 at 15:02, Neil2 said:

So you are saying that for almost two years there has been three boats permanently moored in a no mooring area yet CRT won't/can't do anything about it?

 

 

 

CRT seem to have just about given up on enforcement around here. We had a fattie here on the 24hr VM for a year (with a 'broken down, awaiting parts' sign in the porthole) which finally moved about six weeks ago, only to be immediately replaced with another equally large fattie in the exact same place which was still there yesterday.  

 

And the original fattie has taken up permanent residence on another prime towpath spot about a mile away. 

 

CRT appear to be doing nothing about either of these piss takers (although I agree, enforcement is not a public process).

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1 hour ago, Davids said:

CRT moorings. The fire fighters got the fire under control and moving was thankfully unnecessary. As usual CRT did nothing. Not long after that boat moved off another 2 moored up and stayed there for TWO YEARS. How CRT allow this to go on is beyond me.

 

I'd be tempted to say stop paying the CRT on the grounds that you can't get your boat on or off the mooring. However no doubt they'd throw the book at you as you are a bone fide licensed boater. 

 

As @MtB says they seem completely powerless against the unlicensed permanently moored wrecks on the system that are being lived on. I assume the legalities of removing a boat and making someone 'homeless' make enforcement complex and perhaps nearly impossible, although I really don't know. 

 

Looking at the prices of online CRT moorings in the south, I'm sure your mooring doesn't come cheap.....a marina would probably be cheaper and that's what I'd be thinking if I were you, even if it meant commuting. 

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Rather than just writing to CRT I suggest you make a formal complaint as they will be obliged to respond to this.

 

A long shot, you could reverse out and so block the canal and then phone the CRT emergency number, it would be interesting to see how CRT respond.

 

Are you paying money directly or indirectly to CRT for the mooring? You could suggest that you will withhold payment but I suspect that the mooring agreement states that you must bare the risk of the the mooring becoming unusable.

 

The boats are quite likely within the CRT enforcement process but that moves at the speed of a dead snail.

 

Setting the boats adrift when they are unoccupied is very tempting but does carry risks.

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My experience of trying to get CRT to move a boat that has moored up on the offside has been fruitless. This boat has been there over a year and therefore must have managed to get a new license! 

Give up your mooring and go somewhere else, life is too short to deal with this, it's just a recipe for stress.

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Oh that's just ridiculous. Ask them to move and then just try and get out. You can't just go around blocking people in, If you cause damage then you are responsible but they can't refuse to move, its a b***** canal. Surely the occupants must go to work / shopping or get water sometime. Phone CRT and really kick up a hell of a stink then get the local paper involved, local councillor and tell CRT what you are doing. Stuff that.

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3 hours ago, Cas446 said:

Give up your mooring and go somewhere else, life is too short to deal with this, it's just a recipe for stress.

 

Can't help but agree with this. Boats move, which is one of their major advantages. I'm sure you can get out just the once, to leave, even if you have to move a vacant boat then put it back. 

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9 minutes ago, MtB said:

 

Can't help but agree with this. Boats move, which is one of their major advantages. I'm sure you can get out just the once, to leave, even if you have to move a vacant boat then put it back. 

 

But good convenient moorings are not always easy to get. There are an increasing number of antisocial "boaters" on the cut and we can't let them control our boating.

In the last two days have met three boats moored just about on the lock landings on the Oxford, a bit of a pain when you have a full length boat.

 

It did occur to me that the OP should get the papers involved, CRT do not like bad publicity.

"Boaters pays top price for mooring and is forced out by thugs" or something like that

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