The aim with this thesis has been divided into two. The first part examines how the Collision Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (Colregs) has been applied by the courts after the 1972 version of the Colregs was put into force in 1977. It focuses mainly on the two most frequently used Colregs - rule 5 "Look-out" and rule 6 "Safe speed".
The second main objective of the work has been to investigate the actual apportionment of liability. I have looked at the Collision Liability Rules in the Norwegian Maritime Code of 24 June, 1994, no. 39 (MC) in relation to Nordic collision case law from 1973, and tried to see whether there is any general tendency of how the liability has been apportioned and also if the different apportionments can be said to contain any characteristics. In this investigation I have only looked at civil collision cases. I have only concentrated on the liability between ships; not liability between vessels and bridges or docks, neither liability to owners of cargo, passengers or other third parties.