in response to a question from a member.....
Newcastle MBA Golf Club
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RULE 24 ~ OBSTRUCTIONS.
24-2 - Immovable Obstruction
Interference by an immovable obstruction occurs when a ball lies in or on the obstruction, or when the obstruction interferes with the player’s stance or the area of his intended swing. If the player’s ball lies on the putting green, interference also occurs if an immovable obstruction on the putting green intervenes on his line of putt. Otherwise, intervention on the line of play is not, of itself, interference under this Rule.
(See FAQ #2)
See also Definitions ~ Obstructions....An "obstruction" is anything artificial, including the artificial surfaces and sides of roads and paths and manufactured ice, except:
a. Objects defining out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings;
b. Any part of an immovable artificial object that is out of bounds; and
c. Any construction declared by the Committee to be an integral part of the course. An obstruction is a movable obstruction if it may be moved without unreasonable effort, without unduly delaying play and without causing damage. Otherwise it is an immovable obstruction.
Note: The Committee may make a Local Rule declaring a movable obstruction to be an immovable obstruction.
Except when the ball is in a water hazard or a lateral water hazard, a player may take relief from interference by an immovable obstruction as follows:
(i) Through the Green:
If the ball lies through the green, the player must lift the ball and drop it, without penalty, within one club-length of and not nearer the hole than the nearest point of relief. The nearest point of relief must not be in a hazard or on a putting green. When the ball is dropped within one club-length of the nearest point of relief, the ball must first strike a part of the course at a spot that avoids interference by the immovable obstruction and is not in a hazard and not on a putting green.
(ii) In a Bunker:
If the ball is in a bunker, the player must lift the ball and drop it either:
(a) Without penalty, in accordance with Clause (i) above, except that the nearest point of relief must be in the bunker and the ball must be dropped in the bunker; or
(b) Under penalty of one stroke, outside the bunker keeping the point where the ball lay directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind the bunker the ball may be dropped. (iii) On the Putting Green: If the ball lies on the putting green, the player must lift the ball and place it, without penalty, at the nearest point of relief that is not in a hazard. The nearest point of relief may be off the putting green. (iv) On the Teeing Ground: If the ball lies on the teeing ground, the player must lift the ball and drop it, without penalty, in accordance with Clause (i) above.
The ball may be cleaned when lifted under this Rule.
(Ball rolling to a position where there is interference by the condition from which relief was taken – see Rule 20-2c(v))
A player may not take relief under this Rule if (a) interference by anything other than an immovable obstruction makes the stroke clearly impracticable or (b) interference by an immovable obstruction would occur only through use of a clearly unreasonable stroke or an unnecessarily abnormal stance, swing or direction of play.
Note 1: If a ball is in a water hazard (including a lateral water hazard), the player may not take relief from interference by an immovable obstruction. The player must play the ball as it lies or proceed under Rule 26-1.
Note 2: If a ball to be dropped or placed under this Rule is not immediately recoverable, another ball may be substituted.
Note 3: The Committee may make a Local Rule stating that the player must determine the nearest point of relief without crossing over, through or under the obstruction.
PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
7/6/2012 07:29:05 am
7/6/2012 07:31:11 am
13/8/2015 03:11:20 pm
The ball lies off the green behind a sprinkler before the green..one is allowed a free drop one club length ..is thus correct?
14/8/2015 04:19:21 am
There are certain circumstances before this can happen.
5/8/2016 03:12:26 am
Sorry to bug you. If you have a ball lying by a tree, and the position you would need to take to play the ball is interfered by a sprinkler box, do you NOT get stance relief? Is this the exception to the rule?
7/8/2016 09:04:58 am
Greetings Rob. Please do not think I'm an expert, this is merely an info blog for our members. In response to your question I have done a Iittle digging on the R&A website and have determined that it depends on the situation. A couple of decisions apply (no doubt among others). If it is as simple as you say, refer to Decision 24-2b/6 ..... Relief from Immovable Obstruction Incidentally Results in Relief from Boundary Fence (read here, in your question, TREE)
22/2/2021 06:27:40 pm
This is a great postt thanks
28/3/2022 11:02:06 am
If your ball lands behind one of those sprinkler boxes and is directly in the line of sight to the hole, do you get line of sight relief with a free drop to the left or the right no closer to the hole? Or do you have to play it as it lies?
16/5/2022 04:22:48 pm
Thank you for sharing this very informative article! Keep on posting
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