craft design categories

On CE certified caft, these are marked on the builder's plate and in the owner’s manual, explaining the design categories as follows:

Category A: The craft is designed to operate in winds that may exceed wind force 8 (Beaufort scale) and in significant wave heights of 4 m and above (see Note 1 below), and is largely self-sufficient. Abnormal conditions such as hurricanes are excluded. Such conditions may be encountered on extended voyages, for example across oceans, or inshore when unsheltered from the wind and waves for several hundred nautical miles.

Category B: The craft is designed to operate in winds up to Beaufort force 8 and the associated wave heights (significant wave height up to 4 m, see Note 1 below). Such conditions may be encountered on offshore voyages of sufficient length, or on coastal waters when unsheltered from the wind and waves for several dozens of nautical miles. These conditions may also be experienced on inland seas of sufficient size for the wave height to be generated.

Category C: The craft is designed to operate in winds up to Beaufort force 6 and the associated wave heights (significant wave height up to 2 m, see Note 1 below). Such conditions may be encountered in exposed inland waters, in estuaries, and in coastal waters in moderate weather conditions.

Category D: The craft is designed to operate in winds up to Beaufort force 4 and the associated wave heights (occasional maximum waves of 0,5 m height). Such conditions may be encountered in sheltered inland waters, and in coastal waters in fine weather.

NOTE 1 The significant wave height is the mean height of the highest one-third of the waves, which approximately corresponds to the wave height estimated by an experienced observer. Some waves will be double this height.