Navigation in Storms: "Typhoons and Hurricanes" 1971 US Navy Training Film; Tropical Cyclones


Navigation in Storms: “Typhoons and Hurricanes” 1971 US Navy Training Film; Tropical Cyclones


Here lies the foundation of the Mariner’s 1-2-3 Rule


Yes, but the language used in, for example the Mariner’s Guide For Hurricane Awareness In The North Atlantic Basin is more absolute.

For example Navy film says be aware that ship’s speed may be affected by system generated swell in an attempt to “Cross the T” and the Mariner’s Guide flatly says “never cross the T”.

Also in the Guide the areas inside the 1-2-3 is called “MINIMUM DANGER AREA TO AVOID” while the Navy film says if the ship is inside the area then plan the same as if the ship is on the forecast track.

The problem with the tighter restrictions is the risk that they will be ignored all together in practice.

If anyone was to watch the AIS during the approach of a system it can be seen that the Area to be Avoided is not in fact avoided.


Back in the 1970s storm forecast errors were very large making it impractical beyond 24-36 hours. Today with much improved position and intensity forecasts the danger area should be reconsidered and updated.

I will we working with Lee Chesneau on a blog regarding this sometime before the start of the Atlantic Hurricane Season

We took a look at back in 2012

Fred Pickhardt

Ocean Weather Services

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Tampa, Florida 813-210-7528


The other issue is that the 1-2-3 rule is it’s designed for plotting text info from the SAT-C. More and more mariners are using weather software. The problem with the software, at least what I’ve seen is the uncertainty is not shown.