Lights Quiz

Quiz on Lights

We all know we need nav lights for when the sun goes down but it’s important to understand what we are looking at when we see the lights on other boats – they all tell a story. It’s also necessary to know the rules surrounding lights. Here’s a short quiz to test your knowledge. Good luck!

  • Navigation lights are designed to:
    1. Actually indicate the relative heading of a given vesselThat is true!
    2. Indicate the distance from your given locationNav lights are not designed to figure out distances, but if they are really big you’re probably too close!
    3. Provide on deck illumination in addition to nav related informationNo, that’s what a flashlight is for…
    4. Provide forward illumination not unlike headlights on a carIncorrect – boats don’t have headlights…
  • The arc of light that the stern light casts is 135-degrees, the same as:
    1. The “overtaking zone”You got it!
    2. The turning radius of most sailboatsThat’s funny – you must have accidentally hit this button
    3. The “Herreshoff zone”We made that up…
    4. The “leading zone”We invented that term for this quiz…try again.
  • Sailboats under 60-feet:
    1. Must have two stern lights and one multicolored bow light when sailing in limited visibility or at nightNo, one stern light is plenty.
    2. Must, by law, have spare emergency nav lights onboardNo, that’s not right but not a terrible idea.
    3. May carry the sidelights and stern light in a single lantern on a mastheadYes!
    4. May not carry the sidelights and stern light in a single lantern on a mastheadNot right, lighten up!
  • A vessel at anchor is required to:
    1. Display a blue light at as high an altitude as possibleBlue lights are pretty, but you are incorrect.
    2. Display an all around white light where it can best be seenYou are right and we are proud!
    3. Display a red light from the spreadersThat sounds like an exotic place to be but it’s not a correct answer.
    4. At least carry Coast Guard approved neon glow sticks and display them from a place where they can best be seenThe CG approves a lot of things but not green neon glow sticks…
  • “Sidelights” are:
    1. White (port) and blue (starboard)Sorry, that be wrong!
    2. Blue (port) and green (starboard)Nope, maybe you haven’t been night sailing yet?
    3. Red (port) and green (starboard)Of course!
    4. Both redNo – hint, it’s two different colors.
  • In a crossing situation:
    1. The vessel that can see the other vessel’s green light is the give way vessel. Incorrect – be careful out there!
    2. The vessel that can see the other vessel’s blue light is the give way vesselNo – blue light?
    3. The vessel that can see the other vessel’s red light is the give way vesselYes!
    4. Lights have nothing to do with who gives wayActually they do!
  • A vessel under sail:
    1. Should have their steaming light onIt’s easy to confuse but that is not correct.
    2. Should not have their steaming light onYou are right!
    3. Should have the blue “sailing beacon” litUh no, what made you think there something called a blue sailing beacon?
    4. Should have their yellow “sailing beacon” litWe’ve never heard of a yellow sailing beacon…try again!
Click on an answer above to start!
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