No.4 Bridge in Water Hazard

Question 1:
Danny's ball comes to rest on a bridge inside the margins of a water hazard. Is he permitted to ground his club when;
a) Walking up to the ball
b) Addressing his ball prior to making his stroke

Answer: Yes, Danny is permitted to ground his club on the bridge at any time.

A bridge is an obstruction. In a hazard, the club may touch an obstruction at address or in the backward movement for the stroke. Touching the bridge prior to address is also permissible, since an obstruction in a water hazard is not ground in the hazard. This applies even if the bridge has been declared an integral part of the course. See Decision 13-4/30.


Question 2:
Danny's ball lies within the margins of a water hazard. He plays right-handed and there is a bridge interfering with his stance and area of intended swing to the green. May he take relief without penalty from this immovable obstruction?
Answer: No, there is no relief for interference by an immovable obstruction when the player's ball lies in a water hazard or a lateral water hazard. Rule 24-2b.
Had Danny's ball been at rest outside the margin of the water hazard or lateral water hazard and the bridge was interfering with his stance or area of intended swing then free relief would have been available. In this situation, to take relief he must lift his ball and drop it, without penalty, within one club-length of and not nearer the hole than the nearest point of relief.
Another 'Rhodes Rules School' Q&A will follow next week,

Good golfing,
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