Pilot / Bridge Team Relationship

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On the work front, I am still seeing issues around the pilot / bridge team BRM and general communication.  In all cases there is no clear determination that one or the other was entirely implicit in the causes and contributing factors to an accident.  Pilots need to look at a better proficiency and assessment program, and the ships bridge teams still show a lack of competency in pilotage waters.  In one recent accident a Japanese owned capesize bulker the “Cape Apricot” had an experienced pilot end up in difficulty while the Philippine Master and officers did not initiate any counter direction treating the pilot as all knowledgeable even though it was obvious the ship was almost certainly end up in difficulty.

It is starting to appear the world’s marine community is coming to something of a crossroads with Pilot/Bridge team relationships.  Many pilot organizations, rightly or wrongly, are starting to feel international marine organizations are only concentrating on a bridge competency levels which only gets the ship from pilot station to pilot station, then hopefully leaving the rest to the pilot.  This is a discussion I am hearing more and more in pilotage circles, both at home and abroad, and in many ways when many marine accident report causes and contributing factors are taken into account, I understand their feelings on this matter.  This is an issue I believe we in the marine community will have to face at some time in the very near future.


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