Pilots and ship´s Captains

by Marine Pilot Luis Vale, Portugal - published -
686

Pilots and ship´s Captains
photo and article by Luis Vale, Portugal

Different opinions on the profession Pilot

Lately there has been a considerable increase in opinions of seagoing ship´s masters complaining about pilotage services, expressed whether as LinkedIn articles and comments or in some reputable industry magazines.

The complaints are diverse and range from pilot boarding procedures to port traffic management and even sarcastic comments about pilot’s character.

It is a known fact that pilotage services vary in quality throughout the world, from the well trained pilots carrying sophisticated electronic equipment and belonging to a certified pilotage organization, thus delivering a real added-value service, to the unfortunate but still existent local gentlemen who can hardly communicate in English with the master.

Everyday problems with which we are confronted

Unfortunately, and this seems to be forgotten by masters serving on nice reliable vessels, working for reputable owners, this is also the sad reality of shipping in general. I could write pages and pages of substandard ships and substandard procedures of ships and masters calling at my port. From the failure to give a reliable ETA at short distance, not knowing the local time, not carrying a suitable chart, anchoring in the wrong position, informing an erroneous draft even when critical UKC is expected, pilot ladders and pilot boarding procedures not conforming to IMO resolution, captains standing alone on the bridge, no adequate information provided to the pilot, no position keeping throughout the passage, no lookout posted and even not being able to effectively communicate with their multi-national crews, the list is extensive, not to mention ship-related deficiencies. Our way, as pilots, to deal with this is to formally communicate to the appropriate authorities through the proper channels. I don’t think that passing a wrong idea about a class of professional mariners on any specialized site or magazine is the best way to do it. This criticism between holders of the same nautical education must be left to the proper forums, where these issues can and must be discussed, specially, considering that there is never a proper identification of the ports and pilots involved in the above mentioned articles and opinions, the whole pilotage class is unfairly and unreasonably targeted.

In most countries, pilots are experienced and highly trained mariners with an extensive seagoing career. In my own country, pilots hold an unlimited masters license, lengthy sea service, all have a 4 years University degree and many have Post Graduation and Masters of Science courses. This, in addition to having passed psychological and physical tests, formal training in Bridge Resource Management, shiphandling in simulators/models and so on.

Safety comes first

Another thing that seems to be forgotten by some shipmasters is that pilots are a part of a vast and often complex safety organization of port services, including VTS, towing and Port State Control that ensures the safety and efficiency of navigation and the protection of infrastructures and the environment within the port area. This means that although we, as pilots, are trying to provide that particular vessel with the best possible service, sometimes our main concern about the overall safety of navigation within the port will be greater than any individual specific ship and this will imply that some vessels will be required to adjust ETA, change pilot boarding position or wait. This will become more frequent as ports are getting congested and ships are getting bigger. Pilots and masters working professionally as a team will undoubtedly find safe answers to problems that may arise.

Pilots can handle constructive criticism. In my port we created a satisfaction survey that is handed to the master on arrival, where several aspects of the pilot service are evaluated from 1 to 10. We kept the survey anonymous and it is filled and handed by the master to another pilot by the time of sailing. We have also included a blank field for remarks and we introduce the master’s pertinent suggestions on our port procedures, or pass their complaints to the appropriate authorities.

It is also worth remembering that pilots often put their lives at risk when boarding or disembarking from vessels, and not all are expecting a carton of cigarettes for it…

I published this letter on Seaways, the journal of The Nautical Institute, a few years ago but looks like the content is still up to date.
Pilots and ship´s Captains
What's your opinion on this?
Be the first to comment...
Login or register to view comments and join the discussion!
Read more...

Article Shiphandling at shipyards, never a dull moment...

by Marine Pilot Luis Vale, Portugal - published

Drydocking or undocking is always a difficult task, particularly with a “dead” vessel (no power/propulsion) and the wind blowing on the ship's side.

0

Article The use of helmets... or “Why Do Pilots Not Wear Helmets?”

by Marine Pilot Luis Vale, Portugal - published

photo and article by Luis Vale, Portugal

0

Article Danish Butter Cookies...

by Marine Pilot Luis Vale, Portugal - published

Why “Danish Butter Cookies” are a part of the standard navigational equipment…

0

Video Eden Pilot Station & it's Harbour Masters-Pilots

Found on YouTube. Created by "EdenKWM".

Created by Eden Killer Whale Museum in association with a display, 'Navigating the way' looking back at the 160 years of history of Eden's Pilot Station and its harbour masters-pilots.

'Navigating the way' was on display from 19 August 2020.

0

Video #Vlog 005 by Mr. Pilot

Found on YouTube. Created by "Mr. Pilot".

• Berthing:

• #VLCC
• LOA : 33m
• Max dr : 20m

• Pilot : @capt_haitham
• Saudi Arabia 🇸🇦

0

Video History: Pilot Cutter (1953)

Found on YouTube. Created by "British Pathé"

Southampton, Hampshire.

Various shots of Trinity House pilot cutter "Penda". M/S pilot's bridge. M/S as Second Officer Harry Goddard leaves the bridge and walks along the deck to his cabin. He takes his cap off, sits down at a table and looks at an album. C/U of his collection of matchbox labels. M/S Goddard sticking in more labels. C/U's Goddard and album. Various shots as he sticks in the labels. M/S of Pilot Knight and Captain Jolliff seated at desk. A waiter enters their cabin and hands them both a cup of tea. C/U officer's hand marking chart. M/S of the two men playing bridge. C/U's of their faces. C/U captain holding cards.


M/S wireless room. The operator hands message to deck hand. M/S as he walks along and delivers the message to Captain Knight. M/S as he opens the letter. He hands message to Jolliff who gets up from the table and puts on his hat and coat. C/U Jolliff speaking to Knight. M/S as Knight leaves the cabin and walks along deck. He goes down rope and onto motor launch waiting for him. Captain Jolliff watches as he leaves. M/S of him on boat heading towards liner "Llangibby Castle". M/S's as he boards the vessel and greets crew. M/S as white and red pilot's flag is run up. M/S as Knight greets captain Whatley and go onto the bridge. Various shots as Knight guides the ship under the command of Whatley. M/S as they consult the map.
FILM ID:1605.19

A VIDEO FROM BRITISH PATHÉ. EXPLORE OUR ONLINE CHANNEL, BRITISH PATHÉ TV. IT'S FULL OF GREAT DOCUMENTARIES, FASCINATING INTERVIEWS, AND CLASSIC MOVIES. http://www.britishpathe.tv/

0

Video Tug Master (1956)

Found on YouTube. Created by "British Pathé".

Southampton, Hampshire.

L/S of the ships and boats in a busy harbour. C/U shot of a nice looking old ship. Camera pans to a couple of little ships - tugs. M/S of one of the tugs "Flying Kestrel" with its Captain Collingwood observing. M/S of "Queen Elizabeth" - the largest passenger liner in the world. "Seven tugs go into action when "Queen Elizabeth" leaves Southampton" - tells a voiceover.

M/S of Captain Collingwood giving instructions on the bridge of "Flying Kestrel". M/S of the tug approaching "Queen Elizabeth". Low angle M/S of the front of "Queen Elizabeth" - one can read the name and a flag is flying from the prow. A rope has been thrown from "Queen Elizabeth" to the tug and men catch it.

Succession of shots demonstrating how difficult and physically hard is to lead as large a ship as "Queen Elizabeth" from the harbour. Several close up shots of the faces of sailors show some extremely young faces, probably between 13 and 15 years of age. Job definitely looks too hard for boys as young as those.

After a job well done, men can relax. C/U shot of a man drying his sweaty face with a handkerchief. Another man drinks from a white mug (probably tea). L/S of "Queen Elizabeth" sailing away.

However, shots of the people finishing the job and relaxing look staged, sailors definitely wear make-up and are most probably typecast for the film.

There are some beautiful shots of "Queen Elizabeth" as it leaves the harbour - magnificent.
FILM ID:55.26

A VIDEO FROM BRITISH PATHÉ. EXPLORE OUR ONLINE CHANNEL, BRITISH PATHÉ TV. IT'S FULL OF GREAT DOCUMENTARIES, FASCINATING INTERVIEWS, AND CLASSIC MOVIES. http://www.britishpathe.tv/

FOR LICENSING ENQUIRIES VISIT http://www.britishpathe.com/

British Pathé also represents the Reuters historical collection, which includes more than 136,000 items from the news agencies Gaumont Graphic (1910-1932), Empire News Bulletin (1926-1930), British Paramount (1931-1957), and Gaumont British (1934-1959), as well as Visnews content from 1957 to the end of 1984. All footage can be viewed on the British Pathé website. https://www.britishpathe.com/

0

Article An overview of the different spellings for a Marine Pilot

by Marine-Pilots.com - published

Please use the menu item "Feedback" if you have another spelling or country-specific name for us.

0

Video Pilot boat goes out, Pilot Boat comes in. The saltie Cape comes in. Busy Sunday in Duluth!

Found on YouTube. Created by Paul Scinocca.

I decided to show the typical happenings when a saltwater freighter arrives Duluth. Most of the time they go to anchor and wait for the Elevator dock. The Pilot Boat brings out the Great Lakes Pilot to sail the ship into the port and to the dock. This vessel arrived early Sunday morning, went to anchor until mid afternoon. They are loading grain at the CHS Elevator in Superor.

0

Video Pilot 17 WP

17 m wavepiercing pilot boat

0