Monday, October 17, 2011

Ask Linda #362-Relief from fence in hazard

Linda, I was playing in a tournament recently when the following situation occurred. My ball came to rest on the side of a hill about a foot from a water hazard.  Just inside the line of the hazard was a split-rail fence that interfered with my swing (I guess the fence was there to prevent people from falling into the water).  Since my ball was not in the hazard, was I entitled to relief from the fence?  What if the fence had been just outside the water hazard?

Thanks.  Even my pro can't answer this one.

Dear Lulu,

An interior fence is an immovable obstruction. If your ball is not in the hazard, then you are entitled to free relief (stance plus one club-length, no closer to the hole).

If your ball is in the hazard, then there is no relief if an immovable obstruction, such as a fence or a bridge, interferes with your stance or swing.

If the fence is a boundary fence, then there is no free relief. If a boundary fence interferes with your stance or swing, you may deem your ball unplayable and proceed under one of the relief options in Rule 28.

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