International Code Signaling Flags

International code signaling flags flags are rarely used or seen these days.

However, I was given this tapestry of flags by my good friend Isabel while I was over-wintering in the South of Spain in the marina at Almerimar, and just wanted an excuse to show it off.

One-flag Signaling Flags are normally used for urgent or very common signals.

A; alpha, Diver down keep clear (when stationary) or I am undergoing a speed trial.

B; bravo, dangerous cargo

C; Charlie, Affirmative

D; delta, Keep clear Keep clear of me, I am maneuvering with difficulty.

E; echo, Altering course to starboard

F; foxtrot, I am disabled

G; golf, I require a Pilot

H; hotel, Pilot on board

I; India, Altering course to Port

J; Juliet, On fire keep clear

K; kilo, I wish to communicate

L; lima, Stop instantly

M; mike, I am stopped. Or I have a doctor on board.

N; November, No negative

O; Oscar, Man overboard

P; papa, About to sail The vessel is about to proceed sea. Or If already at sea - Your lights are out or burning badly. Or Fishing boat at sea - My nets have come fast upon an obstruction.

Q; Quebec, My vessel is healthy and I request free practique.

R; romeo, The way is off my ship. You may pass me.

S; sierra, My engines are going full speed astern

Nautical II

T; Tango, Keep clear of me, I am engaged in pair trawling. Or Do not pass ahead of me.

U; Uniform, You are running into danger.

V; Victor, I require assistance. (not distress)

W; Whiskey, I require medical assistance.

X; X-Ray, Stop carrying out your intentions and watch for my signals.

Y; Yankee, I am dragging anchor. Or I am carrying mails.

Z; Zulu, I require a tug.

Two-flag signaling flags are mostly distress and maneuvering signals.

AC; I am abandoning my vessel.

AN; I need a doctor.

BR; I require a helicopter.

CD; I require immediate assistance.

DV; I am drifting.

EF; SOS/MAYDAY has been canceled.

FA; Will you give me my position?

GW; Man overboard. Please take action to pick him up.

JL; You are running the risk of going aground.

LO; I am not in my correct position: used by a light vessel

NC; I am in distress and require immediate assistance.

PD; Your navigation lights are not visible.

PP; Keep well clear of me.

QD; I am going ahead.

QT; I am going astern.

QQ; I require health clearance.

QU; Anchoring is prohibited.

QX; I request permission to anchor.

RU; Keep clear of me. I am maneuvering with difficulty.

SO; You should stop your vessel instantly.

UM; The Harbour is closed to traffic.

UP; Permission to enter Harbour is urgently requested. I have an emergency.

YU; I am going to communicate with your station by means of the International code of signals.

ZD1; Please report me to the Coast Guard, New York

ZD2; Please report me to Lloyds, London

ZL; Your signal has been received but not understood.

Signaling flags.

This is just a quick easy comment box for Your thoughts on this Page.

For more detailed comments, questions, tips, etc. select any of the Your Pages in the top menu.

Widget is loading comments...

I am perfectly aware that the majority of Wooden Boat aficionados are sensible folk.
However, I need to point out that I am an amateur wooden boat enthusiast simply writing in order to try to help other amateur wooden boat enthusiasts.
And while I take every care to ensure that the information in DIY Wood is correct, anyone acting on the information on this website does so at their own risk.