One or both?

Canal Boat - - Letters - MAR­CUS WINCH,

HAV­ING A DIS­CUS­SION about the prac­tice of open­ing the bot­tom gates on broad locks, the sub­ject of open­ing one or both came up.

We were taught that it was good prac­tice to open both gates, mainly be­cause the edge of the un­opened gate is likely to get worn from boats hit­ting it. Although many would say they’re good boaters and can fit through the gap, that does not re­solve the fact that many gates have dam­age to them.... about rub­bing strip height... big enough to put your hand through when closed and empty. Now, I can ac­cept many people can go through with­out dam­ag­ing the closed gate and it used to be stan­dard prac­tice years ago, but times have changed and no­body is per­fect... that slight change in wind or cur­rent could trip up the best helms­man. But surely, the big­gest case for open­ing both is that, if you don’t, other less con­fi­dent boaters will be more likely to try to ne­go­ti­ate one open gate and cause dam­age.

With the amount of lost water th­ese gates waste and the cost of re­pair, surely the Canal & River Trust should be pro­mot­ing open­ing both gates as the cor­rect and pre­ferred way?

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