Test your knowledge with these Coast Guard license exam prep questions from the National Captain’s Institute

1. INTERNATIONAL RULES: What is the dayshape for a power-driven vessel not under command?

A. 1 black ball

B. 2 black balls

C. 3 black balls

D. none of the above

2. INTERNATIONAL RULES: While under way in a narrow channel, what whistle signal would you sound to overtake another vessel on her port side?

A. 1 short blast

B. 2 prolonged blasts

C. 2 short blasts

D. 2 prolonged followed by 2 short blasts

3. INTERNATIONAL RULES: All of the following indicate a vessel in distress except:

A. flames coming out of the vessel

B. firing a gun at 1-minute intervals

C. 5 or more short, rapid blasts

D. continuous sounding of a horn or bell

4. SD on a chart means:

A. sound

B. storm designation

C. sand

D. doubtful sounding

5. A sea anchor has a tripping line to:

A. direct the vessel’s drift

B. aid in its recovery

C. maintain resistance to broaching

D. aid in casting off


1. B, Rule 27 2. D, Rule 34(c) 3. C, Annex IV 4. D 5. B

July 2013 issue