Pilotage Exemption Certificates

ROBERT HENDERSON
11th July 2008, 14:36
I was reading the July edition of the Nautilus Telegraph, there is an article regarding a Belgain RO-RO ship going sternfirst towards her berth and colliding with another ferry, Pride of Bruges,
The Master of the Belgian ferry did not have a pilotage exemption certificate, but another officer who was not apparently signed on the vessel did, hence the reason for going without a pilot, the Master thought the officer with the exemption should do the manoevering, the officer with the exemption did not have ship handling experience.
I held two pilotage exemptions, one for the River Thames as far as Dagenham, for which I filled in a form to prove that I had done sufficient trips up the Thame and that I could speak English, no examination or interview required. The other exemption for the River Humber was granted under similar circumstances, although I did refuse to do my own pilotage when going to Old Harbour or other berths I was not familiar with. When I rejoined Everard's my Thames exemption was tranferred. The one for the Humber I had to go to VTS Humber to see their operations and go before the Harbour Master and senior pilot before it could be transferred as the ships were near the length for sitting the full pilots exam. I was asked various questions about navigation on the river, but nothing about my ship handling abilities or knowledge of various docks or berths. My last company before retiring we were expected to do our own pilotage wherever it was not compulsory including many foreign ports.
I would like to know the feelings of other members of the subject of own pilotage, especially members who are or have been engaged in the short sea trades.

:sweat: :sweat: :sweat:

Steve Woodward
11th July 2008, 16:37
For a full report on this incident see HERE (http://www.maib.dft.gov.uk/publications/investigation_reports/2008/ursine.cfm)

oceangoer
12th July 2008, 01:08
After a couple of years as Master of an FOC tanker (Gulf - Japan) I decided to take a holiday and went as Master of a 10,000 ton general cargo ship trading the South Pacific/Papua New Guinea for a year. During that year I obtained Pilotage Exemption Certificates for a couple of dozen ports. Then back to tankers for a year before returning and alternating tanker/cargo for the rest of my career.
My Exemptions were a nice addition to the CV and also a nice little earner as I used to charge (by agreement) 50% of the going pilotage rate.
The first time you swing a ship going alongside in Madang is a bit hair-raising, but others like Samarai and Kavieng are a doddle.

Tony Crompton
12th July 2008, 09:45
And what would your reaction be if the Pilot (usually a qualified Master) said I will take the ship to the next Port and only cfharge half as much as the Master?

-----------------------

Tony

Bill Davies
12th July 2008, 09:52
One of the problems I see with Pilotage Exemption Certificates is that they are so often abused. The holder does not exempt himself from his right to call for a Licensed Pilot (when it suits) therefore you have a situation where some Master's holding PECs may if they are not feeling up to it (words chosen carefully) call a Pilot.

Tony Crompton
12th July 2008, 10:03
Very true Bill, but if a PEC holder wants a Pilot in a lot of wind or bad visibility the reply is "If its too windy/too bad visibility for you Sir, then it is for me also."

Also when renewing PEC's Port Authorities take into account if a PEC holder has requested a Pilot. Also from the Pilots point of view it leads to all sorts of problems when you have a schedule all worked out and Pilots running round
like blue a**** flies keeping the programme going and out of the blue a PEC holder suddenly wants a Pilot. I know you would not have been too pleased if your ship was delayed while they "Shook the tree" for another Pilot.

Regards, Tony

Bill Davies
12th July 2008, 10:29
Good response Tony.

ROBERT HENDERSON
12th July 2008, 13:19
Tony and Bill
I can see Tony's point from the perspective of a retired pilot. As I said in my starting this thread I held two PECs. Most of the ships I was master on carried only one mate, if you had a mate that you could not trust with some of the pilotage it could mean 12 hours on the bridge after a 6 hour watch. I addmit that very often when approaching a river berth my mind was more on getting some rest rather than the job in hand. In the Humber I alternated between taking a pilot and doing my own, trying to keep both sides happy. I got to know a lot of Humber pilots and they a great bunch who did understand the pressure from the paper clip counters in the company's office.
The last company before I retired I gave an ETA for Liverpool Bar pilot station, I was reminded twice the ship was not compulsory pilotage,as I was going to a dock on the Mersey I had never been before I insisted on a pilot, I was then warned that I could be replaced. I still took a pilot. The point in starting the thread was really trying to say albeit badly that it should always at masters discertion and that no master should be pressurised.
Robert

Bill Davies
12th July 2008, 18:27
Robert,
I do not have a coastal background but I do understand your argument. I have always been amazed how these coastal companies get away with running ships on 6 on and 6 off. I spoke with one Shipmaster recently who works for an Irish coastal outfit (green hull) and he Pilots the vessel right up the Manchester Ship Canal from the Bar. I imagine that ETA at the Bar would have to coincide with him just arriving on watch. In truth that is probably not the case. OK for young men I suppose.

Bill

ROBERT HENDERSON
12th July 2008, 19:25
Bill
Even young men get tired. I believe the reason a lot of this does not come to light is the fact that when there is an accident it is as a rule put down to crew negligence. From personal experience, as well as crew cutting the other problem comes from untrained third world crewing. While master of the small tanker I have posted in the galleries, we sometimes had to manoeuvre into an inside berth on the Thames. Itmeant passing a dolphin from another berth and leaving just enough room before turnig in at a shallow angle, so you were actually having to steer, when realistically you need to be on the bridge wing. I count myself lucky that I never done serious damage,because as well as this I have been absolutly tired from long spells on the bridge as well as quick turnarounds. I have always advocated it should always be up to the master as to whether he take a pilot and not someone sitting in an office who has never had experience as to what it entails.
Regards Robert

Bill Davies
12th July 2008, 20:06
Quote:I have always advocated it should always be up to the master as to whether he take a pilot and not someone sitting in an office who has never had experien[I]ce as to what it entails Unquote
Robert,
With above I wholeheartedly agree.
Brgds
Bill

joebuckham
12th July 2008, 21:12
hi robert

i certainly agree that it is entirely up to the old man, if on a non compulsory ship or holding a pec for that ship, to be the sole judge of whether he takes a pilot or not.
however one person on the bridge of a tanker on an approach manoeuvre in a tight situation really is fraught with danger, i would think most harbour masters would take a very dim view of that if they knew it was happening within their limits.

ROBERT HENDERSON
12th July 2008, 22:22
Hi Joe
I perhaps should made it clearer regarding the small tanke I referred to. We were actually employed in the edible oil trade, not hazardous cargoes, so were not subject to the same PLA rules regarding other tankers.
Regards Robert

oceangoer
12th July 2008, 23:02
And what would your reaction be if the Pilot (usually a qualified Master) said I will take the ship to the next Port and only cfharge half as much as the Master?
Tony

That's his prerogative. If he wants to apply to an agency and offer his services at low rates there's nothing stopping him.

By the same token if I have a PEC and do the job for nothing presumably your response would be to offer your services as Master of my ship for nothing.

NZSCOTTY
13th July 2008, 08:29
Sounds like the old pilot versus master arguement is creeping in to some of this discussion!

Hugh Ferguson
13th July 2008, 10:23
Click HERE (www.rakaia.co.uk/downloads/collision.pdf) if you wish to see what one PEC holder was responsible for. I never ever witnessed such reckless, irresponsible, unseamanlike behaviour. To come crashing into a ship at about 10 knots, with both anchors in the hause and then immediately back out of the bloody great hole you,ve just created, allowing No.2 hold to fill in seconds, should to my mind be a gaoling offence. No need to ask me how I feel about those P.O.C. (Pilots of Convenience).

NZSCOTTY
13th July 2008, 17:14
Now, now sir are you painting every PEC holder with the same picture. I am sure we could find many incidences where a pilot is responsible but gets away with it because he is only advising. As both a pilot and PEC holder I try to see the biger picture.

ROBERT HENDERSON
13th July 2008, 17:51
HUGH
Thanks for directing us to the details of the incident that you were involved in, although I am not surprised, what does surprise me is the fact there are not more incidents near the SW or W Oaze buoys.
Regards Robert

oceangoer
14th July 2008, 05:37
Click HERE (www.rakaia.co.uk/downloads/collision.pdf) if you wish to see what one PEC holder was responsible for. I never ever witnessed such reckless, irresponsible, unseamanlike behaviour .... no need to ask me how I feel about those P.O.C. (Pilots of Convenience).

Without being picky .... I note that the vessel you were piloting was agreed (presumably by the underwriters) to be 33% responsible for the collision.

Now I know that a commercial decision may not truly reflect what happened but more the realities of costs if it goes to Court/Arbitration, but 33% is more than I'd expect from a blameless happenstance.

As for 10.8 kts average in dense fog ....... (Thumb) .... wunderbar .... memories leap up of Capt Carney, "MV Glenogle", January 1963, Rotterdam to London, pea soup fog, 21 kts, Decca 606TM radar, a middy was coasting his time out and was the only one who knew how to work it ....

As a "Pilot of Convenience" of 30 years experience I never damaged a ship (either my own or anyone else's) in any way and never twatted a wharf either.

However, having blown my trumpet, I must say that I'd NEVER navigate/berth in European close waters without a pilot or several years experience under my belt.

My worst PEC's were running the Great Barrier Reef without a pilot. That can be white knuckle stuff when both the 20 year old radar and gyro fall over and the Patagonian Uncertificated 3rd Mate panics .... but it's all part of life's rich tapestry of an FOC ShipMaster.

Bill Davies
14th July 2008, 07:45
Oceangoer,
Quote: but it's all part of life's rich tapestry of an FOC ShipMaster: Unquote

Excellent post! Well said.

Brgds

Bill

captpat
14th July 2008, 12:07
There are many instances where the Masters of vessels running to berths on a regular basis would be far more familiar with conditions at a given berth/location than the local pilots. The Irish coasters with green hulls would be a great example - for a long while they were virtually the only vessels running up to Manchester and as they were not taking pilots, how did the pilots get experience ?

Pat Kennedy
14th July 2008, 12:23
The question must be asked; how can an exemption certificate be issued to a man with limited ship handling experience?
Surely the certificate is not issued without proof that the candidate is familiar with, and competent in that particular pilotage area, and has experience of handling a ship in that area.
Pat

Brian Locking
14th July 2008, 12:36
By definition:
PECs are issued to regular runners to the port in question. It follows that these vessels will be of the smaller variety where the Master's ship handling skills are not in question and may match or better that of a pilot for that port. The arguement here I think, in the principle in PECs and the abuse thereof.

Brian

Pat Kennedy
14th July 2008, 12:40
The reason I asked was because I knew a master on one of the big Ro Ro ferries running between Dublin and Liverpool. he had to have a pilot on board until the pilotage authority was satisfied he could do the job.
Pat

joebuckham
14th July 2008, 13:01
hi pat
this is quite usual, the roro ships and other regular runners to the tees, who were within compulsory pilotage parameters, had to do a number of trips in and out with a pilot, then have an examination on their knowledge of the river from sea to the berth.
the reason for training of pilots and all these other, seemingly, often aggravating regulations is so that the port amd private berth owners have a measure of protection from possible damage to their assets

Pilot mac
14th July 2008, 15:28
Gents,
several worms escaping from this can but I think we are missing the point of Roberts initial post.

1) The A N Other with PEC engaged to do the pilotage should not have been issued with a PEC for a vessel that he was not familiar with.

2) I cannot possibly see how this PEC holder was 'Bona fide' as per 1987 pilotage act.

3) Who issued him with the PEC?

regards
Dave

peterjholcroft
14th July 2008, 16:24
The collision between the Ursine and the Pride of Brugge is interesting in that the Captain of a ferry (I hesitate to use the term Master) had no ship handling experience. The Ursine had ben under the command of highly experienced British Master's until shortly before this incident, but they were replaced in a cost cutting exercise.
This minor fact was conveniently overlooked in the MCA investigation.

peterjholcroft
14th July 2008, 16:40
Regarding the issue of Pilotage Exemption Certificates - most ports, such as the Thames and the Humber require an examination and an assessment before an exemption certificate can be issued. The exemption holder is then re-assessed every five years. These examinations are not 'rubber stamp' jobs and require a good knowledge of the area in order to pass. Ships that are below the length above which a Pilot is compulsary (self takers) are not required to possess an exemption.

John Gurton
14th July 2008, 19:27
There is a Draft Marine Navigation Bill out at the moment. The UKMPA , Harbourmasters, Nautilus and many Pilotage Districts etc all lobbying against it. One of the proposals is that any person , not the bona fide master or mate may hold a PEC. and conduct the vessel in. IE A SECONDARY PILOT SERVICE !!
We have only just managed to control the skill levels required for a PEC and now we have this threatening the SAFETY of navigation in our Estuary. Absolute madness !

ROBERT HENDERSON
14th July 2008, 20:06
Peterjholcroft
In starting this thread, I stated that I held a PEC for both the Thames and the Humber. Initially I was not examined or interviewed for either PEC. When I rejoined Everard the Thames PEC was tranferred to Everard ships and only had to prove I had done so many trips in and out of the Thames, also to sign that I had a working knowledge of English, similarly with the Humber initially. I was only examined regarding the Humber PEC as the ships I was Master on were on the border line length wise. I was not on RO RO ships or ferries using more or less the same berths all the time.
In starting this thread the point I was making was not so much as to whether PECs should issued but even if a Master holds a PEC the decision as to whether he takes a pilot or not should be a matter for him and him alone.
I remember the Minister of Shipping (Lord Brabazon of Tara) making a speech regarding the change to a perfectly good Pilot, saying it would up to the Master, but no protection was put in place if pressure was applied by some spotty faced kid in an office, as I have encounterd.

I agree whole heartedly with John Gurton's point.
Robert

NZSCOTTY
14th July 2008, 20:17
Perhaps it should be the issuing authority which should be looked at rather than having a go at the exempt master. I am no aware of any port in New Zealand where the candidate for an exemption does not have prior training with another master to prove his ship handling skills prior to being examined both in written and oral form by the issuing authority.

Bill Davies
14th July 2008, 20:40
Recently spoke to a Master of one of the Ferries Birkenhead/Dublin at an NI meeting. Assured me that the PEC was a 30 minute orals (chat) with the Asst Harbour Master in Dublin.
The flip side to this coin is that in 2006 there were three loaded tanker grounding on entering the channel in three consecutive months two of which with the same licensed Pilot onboard.

NZSCOTTY
14th July 2008, 22:57
Is this an Irish "Joke"

Bill Davies
15th July 2008, 07:33
Not an Irish Joke. Probably an Irish scandal. See MCIB website : http://www.mcib.ie/investigations/?-fromsearch=y&-skiprecords=22&-maxrecords=1

#23 - 17/09/2005 - Bro Traveller - Dublin Bay - Ongoing.

Understand the Bro Traveller was the third in three consecutive months.

Thamesphil
15th July 2008, 09:19
I'm not a seafarer so I'm not going to discuss the rights or wrongs of pilotage exemption. However, back in the early 80s I worked for a coastal shipowner. Profit margins on short haul cargoes were very tight and there was little money being made. Shipping is a cyclical business anyway and freight rates were at a low point at that time. Compulsory pilotage was an expensive business, so most of the skippers got their pilotage exemption for ports most regularly visited. If costs like that hadn't been cut, there would have been no money, no profits and no jobs. Simple as.

captpat
15th July 2008, 11:36
Bill
Most definitely not a scandal. It takes a hell of a lot more than that to create a scandal over here. Regarding the 3 months in a row tankers, are there investigations pending or reports out for the other 2 groundings? I dont see any reference to this on the mcib site.

Brgds
Pat

Brian Locking
15th July 2008, 11:37
I'm not a seafarer so I'm not going to discuss the rights or wrongs of pilotage exemption. However, back in the early 80s I worked for a coastal shipowner. Profit margins on short haul cargoes were very tight and there was little money being made. Shipping is a cyclical business anyway and freight rates were at a low point at that time. Compulsory pilotage was an expensive business, so most of the skippers got their pilotage exemption for ports most regularly visited. If costs like that hadn't been cut, there would have been no money, no profits and no jobs. Simple as.

Thamesphil,
You are clearly a disciple of Martin Stopford![=P]
I suspect all Ship Masters readily recognise that the commercial pressures you have outlined are the cause of many maritime accidents.

ROBERT HENDERSON
15th July 2008, 13:44
Thamesphill
I am fully aware of the financial pressure shipping companies were under. I also know that companies pay out the first ten to twenty thousand of any insurance claim, this information came from William Everard during a conversation one day.
When I was with the company that owned the Syndic, all the Masters had PECs. On one voyage one of the ships was bound to Procter and Gamble's jetty and to berth port side to.
The Master had never been to that jetty before but agreed to berth as requested, he came up river against the ebb tide, commenced to swing to starboard, as the ship got closer to the jetty she stopped swinging due to ebb tide pushing on the vessels stern, she finished crashing into the jetty causing a considerable amount of damage putting both the ship and jetty out of action. I am sure in instances like this the fully licensed pilot would have been the cheaper option.
Robert.

Thamesphil
15th July 2008, 14:01
Robert, you make a fair point. It was Everards I worked for. Whilst it was common practice for their Thames skippers to have a pilotage exemption, they regularly employed the services of a "mud pilot" who would meet the vessel off the berth (or creek) and actually berth/unberth the vessel. They were very experienced Thames watermen(?) who, I remember being told, could probably do the job blindfold (not literally, of course!) They were much cheaper than the Trinity House pilots, who had comparitively little knowledge of the small creeks and berths on the Thames anyway.

Phil

Brian Locking
15th July 2008, 14:16
Thamesphill
I also know that companies pay out the first ten to twenty thousand of any insurance claim, this information came from William Everard during a conversation one day.
Robert.


Robert,

A prudent shipowner will get a fair proportion, if not all, his deductible back from the repairer.(Thumb) Combined with his LOH cover do not shed a tear(==D)
Brian

ROBERT HENDERSON
15th July 2008, 14:21
Hi Phil
I worked for Everards in the 1950s and again I think in the eighties, The last time as Master on the River Trader, North Sea Trader and Superiority. The difference there and some other companies was the fact that the Deck Super, (Capt Garret) had actually been Master with the company, Capt. Garret always emphasised safety first and did not pressure us if we felt we needed a pilot we took one on the Thames it would be a mud pilot. Other companies I have been pressurised by people in an office who have never done the job, one was an ex Everard man whose surname I have forgotten. Unfortunately the thread has gone of from the points I was makeing, however people argue I will allways maintain my believe that it should be the Master and the Master alone to make a decision as to whether to take a pilot or not.
Robert

Thamesphil
15th July 2008, 14:34
Yes, I remember Ken Garrett and his sidekick Brian Lane. Ken had one of those scary, well-worn faces that you didn't forget in a hurry!

peterjholcroft
15th July 2008, 15:01
Peterjholcroft
In starting this thread, I stated that I held a PEC for both the Thames and the Humber. Initially I was not examined or interviewed for either PEC. When I rejoined Everard the Thames PEC was tranferred to Everard ships and only had to prove I had done so many trips in and out of the Thames, also to sign that I had a working knowledge of English, similarly with the Humber initially. I was only examined regarding the Humber PEC as the ships I was Master on were on the border line length wise. I was not on RO RO ships or ferries using more or less the same berths all the time.
In starting this thread the point I was making was not so much as to whether PECs should issued but even if a Master holds a PEC the decision as to whether he takes a pilot or not should be a matter for him and him alone.
I remember the Minister of Shipping (Lord Brabazon of Tara) making a speech regarding the change to a perfectly good Pilot, saying it would up to the Master, but no protection was put in place if pressure was applied by some spotty faced kid in an office, as I have encounterd.

I agree whole heartedly with John Gurton's point.
Robert

I am in complete agreement with you - if you have any doubt whatsoever as to your ability, for whatever reason, to carry out the Pilotage safely then you should either employ the sevices of a Pilot or wait until you feel that you can proceed safely. There is now a SI (number 2886) which states:

'Master's discretion
3. The owner, charterer or manager of a ship or any other person shall not prevent or restrict the master of the ship from taking or executing any decision which, in the master's professional judgement, is necessary for the safe navigation of the ship.'

The penalty is up to two years in prison or a fine or both.

I consider that this covers a Master's decision to take a Pilot if he deems it prudent for the safety of the vessel.

Tony Crompton
15th July 2008, 16:06
Hi Phil
I worked for Everards in the 1950s and again I think in the eighties, The last time as Master on the River Trader, Robert

According to my records I piloted "River Trader" in the Tees . I have a vague recollection of being told that Everards had removed the Tween Decks from the ship and the resulting loss of weight caused the ship to be so light as to be almost unmanegable in light condition.

Is this correct or just my memory playing tricks ( often does at my age!! )

Tony

ROBERT HENDERSON
15th July 2008, 16:40
Hi Tony
You are quite correct regarding the tween deck removal on the River Trader, if you tried to berth with all ballast out, even with a slight breeze she was almost impossible to handle, you could just about get away with it with the fore peak and no1 ballast tanks in so that the bow thruster was submerged. Once at a coal berth opposite to the same berth at Europort I berthed with a pilot and taking pilot's advive used a small tug aft for safe passage through the canal bridges and that was with full ballast. On berthing I was assured by the agent that I was on the loading berth, we deballasted and done the draft survey when I was told to shift, which meant going quite a distance round the other side of the berth, it was blowing about 5to6, she would swing at all through the wind, so I dropped an anchor to hold her head to wind and went stern first along the canal and then onto the berth with the anchor still down, no damage occured but my wife was not impressed with the colour of my underpants.
Regards Robert

Bill Davies
15th July 2008, 18:05
CaptPat,
Quote: It takes a hell of a lot more than that to create a scandal over here:Unquote.
The scandal is that the MCIB website does not reflect the gravity of the situation and it took the 'Bro Traveller' to force there hand.
Chronologically:
1. 'Vergina' 01.05.05.
2. 'Sten Embla' 03.07.05.
3. 'Bro Traveller' 17.09.05.

Brgds

Bill

Hugh Ferguson
15th July 2008, 18:30
Worth noting (Ref. Post#19 by oceangoer) that the apportionment, made in many cases of collision between vessels of 2/3;1/3, has no relevance to blame. Blame can only be apportioned by a marine court of law.
2/3;1/3 is a commonplace agreement between owners and insurers for the division of the costs of repairing the damage occurring. Had, for instance, a collision occurred between a ship underway and another at anchor, an apportionment of 2/3;1/3 could still apply, especially if the anchored ship was anchored in a buoyed fairway. The thinking being that if the anchored ship had not been where it was a collision would not have occurred.
In the case of the Hudson Light/Chantala collision I was not even summoned to Trinity House to be questioned about the circumstances.

Bill Davies
15th July 2008, 21:27
Hugh,
I thought you were going to give us a para on the nexus with the Running Down Clause.
Brgds
Bill

captpat
16th July 2008, 09:07
Bill
I can understand your concerns regarding the gravity of the situation. These are quite large tankers and could cause quite a lot of pollution if these mishaps were to go unquestioned. Do you think that a lack of competence or experience on behalf of the pilot concerned may have been a contributing factor or could it be the ships master & officers.
What could the MCIB website do to reflect the seriousness of the situation ? What happened with the Bro Traveller that forced their hand. Was there some sort of public outcry or media coverage?

Brgds

Pat

Bill Davies
16th July 2008, 10:15
Capt Pat,
The account I have given is correct. I understand that the Pilot who was onboard two of the vessels was well known. I could not possibly comment on his competence.
The MCIB became involved when a disgruntled employee of the Port contacted the Irish Times.

NZSCOTTY
16th July 2008, 10:47
Bill, where can we get the full report on Bro Traveller and the other two incidents?

Bill Davies
16th July 2008, 10:51
NZSCOTTY,

Contact the MCIB direct. They are not easy to talk to and one gets the distinct feeling they are somewhat embarrassed. The initial Investigator/Examiner has only recently retired and that is used as an excuse.

Brgds
Bill

captpat
16th July 2008, 12:58
NZSCOTTY

The Bro Traveller investigation is listed as ongoing and there is no reference to the other two incidents on the site (that I can find). Not surprising that they will not comment on on-going investigations - particularly ones that have been instigated by newspaper reports and disgruntled employee's.

Brgds

Pat

Bill Davies
16th July 2008, 13:21
That is the scandal! It took the Bro Traveller to get coverage. The other incidents did happen.

captpat
16th July 2008, 13:58
Bill
I'm not suggesting that these incidents didn't happen - maybe the other two incidents were very minor and didn't warrant full scale investigations by the department - maybe they were handled internally by the port authority - it may be the case that there is only an investigation because of some sensational journalism on a quiet news day ? I dont know but if there was any hint of a scandal in Ireland we would opt for a Tribunal to investigate.

Brgds

Pat

NZSCOTTY
16th July 2008, 14:04
Bill and Pat, this all sounds a bit Mickey Mouse. Can one of you tell us what actually happened to the Bro Traveller and the other 2 vessels??

ray bloomfield
16th July 2008, 15:31
I have worked on the coast most of my life on various craft ranging from 120 ton wooden barges (coastal) to 2500 ton and the decision as wether to take a pilot or not in non compulsary areas has always been mine to make with no consideration as to what the owner thinks, but the fact that I could recieve up to 50% of the pilotage fee did have a large influence on my decision. There are compulsory areas where a licensed pilot is realy not needed and others like the old harbour, where you entered then swung and went up backwards thru 4 or 5 bridges is definetly adviseable (the Berry family did it in the eighties)and a fine job they made of it to!!

captpat
16th July 2008, 15:52
NZSCOTTY
You are right and it is wandering off the main point of the thread. I dont know a thing about them - only what I read here.
The choice to take a pilot or not is always the masters. Some masters may allow themselves to be intimidated but each to their own. I often took pilots in area's where either the v/l or myself were exempt for whatever reason (tiredness/not been there for a while/unusual conditions etc.) and never had complaints from owners or charterers. There is no point in wasting money on a pilot when you can do it yourself ( and earn a few extra quid also).

Hugh Ferguson
2nd August 2008, 15:10
Hugh,
I thought you were going to give us a para on the nexus with the Running Down Clause.
Brgds
Bill

Not me, Bill, I'm no academic. Something called seamanship is what it's all about. I can do no better than quote, R.H.B.Ardley, on ship handling in his book, Harbour Pilotage. "-------------The pilot's stand-by in almost every emergency are the ship's anchors. The old sea maxim, 'Never go ashore with an anchor at your bow' may well be altered for narrow waters to 'Never do damage with an anchor at your bow'----If danger of doing damage to other ships or dock construction is imminent, there is one effective remedy at hand. Both anchors are let go, together and on the run, and the cables are allowed to run out until the anchors are able to get an effective grip, when they are checked, and alternately held and grudgingly veered as the ship's way is reduced. It is astonishing how rapidly a ship can be brought up, even if she has good headway, when both anchors are used. If only one is dropped, only half the checking action is exerted, and if an excessive strain is brought on the single cable, it will part or the hausepipe split-----------When the stress is carried by both cables and hausepipes the advantage is clear, and many a ship which has carried away her cable in an emergency and then forged ahead to do damage would today have a clean record if both anchors had been let go".

lakercapt
2nd August 2008, 15:43
During my time with Robertsons of Glasgow it was expected that you do your own pilotage in the Thames and other places as well.
The masters were paid a small fee and most of the time we were on aotu pilot (magnetic compass only). Should an AB be required to steer, say in poor visibility, he would be paid more the the master if on overtime.
I learned a great deal on the small boats that helped me later on in my career.
Big boat men and mentality usullly lasted 11 trips and seasickness was the norm until you got used to it.

Bill Davies
3rd August 2008, 10:09
Big boat men and mentality usullly lasted 11 trips and seasickness was the norm until you got used to it.

Interesting. Please expand. Why specifically 11 and did you get used to being seasick?

joebuckham
3rd August 2008, 10:15
hi bill
1 out, 1 home

lakercapt
3rd August 2008, 13:57
Got seasick the first trip after vacation and then was O.K. for the rest of my time there.
Joe has it right one out and one home.
Some never even lasted more than a coastal trip especially in the winter.
You soon learnt all the inshore routes to avoid the bad weather, through the inner islands on the west coast and where the good anchorages were for shelter.
A short story about that.
On route from Gadansk to west coast Ireland port of Sligo we experianced one gale after another and had been a lot longer on passage, having to anchor a couple of time.
A big storm was coming in from the Atlantic so I decided to seek shelter again near Barra.
Cook came to see me and tell me the bad news.
Comfortable night and breakfast in the morning but we were running out of food so he suggested we brave the elements and suck it up. So I up anchor and proceeded.
More like a submarine till we arrived with very clean decks!

Hugh Ferguson
3rd August 2008, 16:24
I've come to believe that there is an element of complacency which exists with some masters who frequently pilot their own vessels in waters only too familiar to themselves.
I was once piloting a ship, in the process of overtaking a "self-taker", off Canvey Is. in the Thames. As we slowly overhauled her I could clearly see into the wheel-house. The person in charge-whoever he was-had his feet up under the wheel-house window watching T.V.!
Could this kind of conduct explain the undoubted history of the involvement of "self-takers" in so many of the worst disasters on the Thames.
Just to name a few that come to mind; the Princess Alice, 640 lives lost; H.M.S. Truculent, 64 lost; Marchioness/Bowbelle, I think about 15; Joseph Rawlinson, 9; and the Monte Ulia which in taking extreme action to avoid a "self-taker" destroyed the brand new, 9 million, No.4 Coryton deep-water oil jetty! And in my own experience in the B.I. Chantala, which, had it been struck just 15 feet further aft, carnage would have been the order of the day on account of most of the cadets being in their quarters packing their gear prior to leaving the ship at the end of the voyage.
Had the Hudson Light struck there, there would have been no solid barrier of jute bales to arrest her progress. She would have ploughed half way through the ship with god only knows what consequences and it was no thanks to them that this worst case scenario did not occur.

(Incidentally, down here in the South West of England, we are growing accustomed to the watch officer in some ship or other, falling asleep and being awoken as his ship went crashing onto the rocks.
Is this indicative of too long hours of duty, or is it the soporific atmosphere of an over-heated wheel-house. There were no heated wheel-houses in any of the ships I last went deep-sea in.)

Bill Davies
3rd August 2008, 16:40
'Self Takers' Hugh!
I am sure you are going recieve a few mails on that description.

Following an incident on the 'Elwood Mead' 26.12.72 the cause of the grounding being the Second Mate falling asleep drunk in the Pilot Chair. All Pilot chairs were removed from the bridge of Kaiser ships immediately. Jim Hood of TK shipping fame was Marine Super at the time. This General Directive was also issued on NBC and others almost immediately.

captainchris
3rd August 2008, 20:54
I am not sure what you mean about "self takers" but I used to do my own pilotage up as far as Battersea on the Thames and still do, although on passenger vessels. There don't seem to be any Pilots who are qualified these days to work the upper reaches on the Thames, apart from two who seem to do up to the Upper Pool . The upper river is pretty busy nowadays with the normal traffic of party boats, barge tains for rubbish and of course the Thames Clippers, ask Ben on site.

A few years ago, I lost a crankshaft off Margarita Weston and had to anchor off Dover until the Mary Weston picked me up as a tow to Erith, approaching Sea Reach 1 an East German vessel outward boand with a pilot tried to go between me and the Mary!! Although we had already broadcast our position the pilot was still under the impression he could cut between us.

When you work the Thames, day in day out then maybe you can comment more.

Best regards,

Chris.

Hugh Ferguson
4th August 2008, 21:38
"Self-taker" is a broad expression which licenced pilots use to describe that multitude of vessels in which the master, or his delegate, perform their own pilotage within pilotage districts in which there is a law for the implementation of compulsory pilotage in those areas where it is thought to be necessary.
It is no more derogatory (as some appear to think it to be) than the other expression, commonly once used to distinguish "outward" pilots from "inward" pilots: they were always referred to as "downies".

lakercapt
4th August 2008, 22:32
Hugh I am not anti pilots as I was very glad to see them board at St.Lambert after a trip down the "Seaway" but I was a "selftaker" when in the small boats (when in UK) and did all the ship pilotage in the "Great Lakes"(except for a couple of sections in the Seaway when the mate did it) On one occassion in Thunder Bay did ten shift ships in one day.I am certain you can quote about incidents with these "selftakers" and any navigating mate or master and conversely there are many incidents that happen when a pilot is on board. We are human and are inflicted by that fault of sometimes making an error in judgement.
I saw the standards go down when we went FOC and I wondered at times if the mates were really qualified or had purchaced their certificates as the errors in judgement when near water navigation and heavy traffic had me terrified.

Bill Davies
5th August 2008, 04:52
I saw the standards go down when we went FOC and I wondered at times if the mates were really qualified or had purchaced their certificates as the errors in judgement when near water navigation and heavy traffic had me terrified.

Bill R,

This was not unusual in FOC and something I witnessed quite frequently. If you are prepared for it you can handle it. The problem we have in more recent years (since say the early/mid 90s) it is the training and general dumming down in our own home grown variety.

Bill

Hugh Ferguson
5th August 2008, 19:55
Yes, Bill, (not uncle Bill; the other one!) I can agree with you that human error maybe a factor in some accidents, but there are many circumstances in which it would have been humanly impossible to foresee the outcome of an action, or of the action which may have been the best. (Have I never got around to telling you about the Swedish cargo ship I put on the Goodwin!?)
I am only too grateful not to have been responsible for the death of anyone during my 27 years piloting. The only fatalities I can call to mind in those years, in ships piloted by licenced pilots in the Thames Estuary, were of pilots themselves. But I stand to be corrected on that.
I have never really got over the so near catastrophe in the B.I. Chantala. It still sends a shiver down my spine whenever I think of all of those cadets who could have had the steel plates of their own ship wrapped around them, just 20 miles from Tilbury where many of their parents awaited their arrival.
In the case of the Monte Ulia crash into the brand new Coryton No.4 jetty what do you think the pilot may best have done: ploughed into the gassed up vessel hoping it didn't explode, or sink too fast for anyone to survive, or demolish a 9,000,000 jetty. I'd go for the jetty myself, but I'm glad I was never confronted with having to make that decision in a matter of seconds.

ROBERT HENDERSON
5th August 2008, 20:26
Gentlemen,
When I started the thread I was not in anyway trying to see who was better or worse than the other. I was more interested in getting reaction from people who have been in the same situation as myself whereby I have been almost forced to do my own pilotage when I have not felt up to it. Sometimes through tiredness with fast turnaround, lack of sleep or not familiar enough with the port. I will take ships of the size I am used to up any buoyed channel in a river. At an unfamiliar berth that is when problems can start. Also when one is tired, I have been in that situation especially with crew cutting and a deck crew none of whom could steer. In situations of tiredness my main thought has not been how to approach a berth but how soon can I get to bed. I always took the attitude that is the paper clip counters didn't like they could replace, as long as I kept my certificates clean at least I could get another jab. I just feel it is wrong to be forced into doing ones own pilotage and that if necessary there should be legislation whereby it is up to masters discretion and masters discretion alone. Unless things have changed since I retired the PEC for the Thames was granted after so many voyages in and out with no examination whatsoever, surely this cannot be right.

Bill Davies
5th August 2008, 20:35
Gentlemen,
Unless things have changed since I retired the PEC for the Thames was granted after so many voyages in and out with no examination whatsoever, surely this cannot be right.

Robert,

I do not see why this should surprise you. There is at least one major Pilotage authority where the Pilots do not have to be examined. It is based on solely on Channel transits, SPM Berthing of various tonnages and alongside berthing of various tonnages. No exams, no questions re 'Blind Pilotage' etc, etc.
With this in mind P & I Clubs have initiated Competence Assurance on some Authorities. None in the UK I might add.

Uncle Bill

Hugh Ferguson
5th August 2008, 22:19
Quote, "I was not in any way trying to see who was better or worse than the other".
Never thought you were, Robert. Regards, Hugh.

Hugh Ferguson
12th August 2008, 10:48
An aspect of the relationship between licenced pilots, PEC pilots and ship masters, which I believe could be relevant to this thread, is perfectly illustrated by the following. (I wish I had thought of it before interest in this thread had begun to wane). It illustrates exactly how the mind-set of each of the three is conditioned by the duties he is undertaking.
On Nov.23rd.1973 I boarded the British Navigator at anchor to the east of the Tongue L.V.. We were to be underway shortly after 5am bound via the Black Deep for I.O.G.. As soon as the anchor was up I "advised", hard a port and half ahead. Before even the wheel had moved a spoke the captain said, "she turns better to starboard, pilot". And there you have a perfect demonstration of the respective mind-sets. The master's all relative to the ship's (most ships in fact) right handed propellor effect, making it faster to turn to starboard. Mine, the pilot's, being that all that occupied my mind in those particular circumstances was to turn the ship to where the deeper water lay. The master's thinking, in that instance, lay in his world, the ship. Mine lay in factors outside of the ship. You could say we operated on differing wave-lengths.
The same mind-sets, I feel sure, exist for PEC pilots but in a different form. In confined waters as, distinct from the deep sea master, where both of our kinds find ourselves most of the time, it is vitally important to have a keen appreciation of what the fellow in the other ship is having to contend with, and make allowance accordingly. I'm sorry to say that this is not something which is given enough attention to by many a PEC master (or his delegate). I could give examples but maybe this enough for the time being.
(By the way, can anyone explain why a right-handed propellor turns a ship quicker to starboard than the other way. One would think the opposite should be the case).

ROBERT HENDERSON
12th August 2008, 15:39
HUGH
Your last sentence poses a very interesting question. I was always taught that a ship with a righthandes propeller always turned quicker to port, due to the wheeling effect of the propellor on the stern, hence when steering a ship with a righthanded prop. always carried a degree or two of starboard helm.
When turning short round I always turned to starboard, because when using astern movements the starboard swing was maintained due to propellor having the opposite effect and turns the stern to port.
Where is uncle Bill when we need him?

Regards Robert

Bill Davies
12th August 2008, 16:09
Robert/Hugh,
I would suggest the following. The 'wheeling effect' manifests itself in astern engine movements and gets its 'cartwheeling' effect from the propeller blades operating in the lower rotation in water of a greater density. I prefer to think of 'cartwheeling' on its own.
That being said, its effect seems to be invarsely proportional to ship size i.e. noticeable on a panamax and used to good effect on berthing but hardly discernable on ULCCs. Breaks out the port anchor nicely when heaving away and going 'slow astern'.

Bill

captainchris
12th August 2008, 19:24
HUGH
Your last sentence poses a very interesting question. I was always taught that a ship with a righthandes propeller always turned quicker to port, due to the wheeling effect of the propellor on the stern, hence when steering a ship with a righthanded prop. always carried a degree or two of starboard helm.
When turning short round I always turned to starboard, because when using astern movements the starboard swing was maintained due to propellor having the opposite effect and turns the stern to port.
Where is uncle Bill when we need him?

Regards Robert

Hi Robert/Bob,
The theory behind it all is dependant on which hand you use the controls. If you have a right handed engine and you use your right hand on the controls, follow the shoulder, the shoulder goes to the left. Similarly when you go astern the shoulder goes in the way the bow is going to go, to the right. This is more pronounced with twin screw as when you turn short about, one shoulder goes one way and the other the other. Sorry to sound a bit pedantic as I am sure you know the way!!

Apologies Bob.
Best regards,

Chris

Tony Crompton
12th August 2008, 19:56
You do not have to be a Pilot for very long before you realise that ships do not always understand theories!!

The most right handed ship will sometimes go the "other way" and vice versa.The biggest mistake is to rely on a ship going the way it "should" when
going astern on the engines. On a light ship the wind has probably more effect than the propellor when going astern and the ship will invariably put its stern into the wind.

The worst case is trying to turn with the wind one way and the tide the other. Turned many Masters and Pilots into screaming addabs!! You get so far round then the wind takes over, try the other way and the tide gets the ship, put the anchor down and the ship just lies between the two. Ships can on many occasions make the people handling them look daft!!

And the occasions when the engines let you down also (Right Bill?)

Regards,

Tony

ROBERT HENDERSON
12th August 2008, 20:20
Hi Tony
I think we all understand ships are often unpredictable, that why we always refer to them as she.

Hi Chris I understand what you are saying. The passenger ships on Lake Malawi were all twin screw. The older ship was British built with the screws straight out and close together and would only act as twin screw ship with plenty of way on her, turning short round as we had to do at the home port was always a problem with any wind, luckily the wind mostly blew from the lake into the harbour so I found it best to come off the berth and drop anchor and let the wind do the work, as Tony says different situations call for different methods.
The newer ship which I have posted in the lakes gallery was no problem at any time as the screws were angled out wards and further apart. I suppose really it comes down to knowing your own ship.

Regards Bob.

Bill Davies
12th August 2008, 20:24
Right Tony!

Hugh Ferguson
13th August 2008, 12:27
The only time I ever desperately needed a ship to "cut" (term used by pilots) the right way, she did, and that was quite contrary to what I had anticipated (and feared) that she would go off to starboard.
This was the era when the canal was closed and anything that was capable of transporting oil was pressed into service. That situation landed me one day in an old Norwegian tanker steam turbine engined. Just after clearing the North Edinburgh channel, in bound, the steering failed. Apparently there was no emergency steering forthcoming so it was full astern and hope for the best. After what seemed an eternity that tired old astern steam turbine showed some signs of life and, would you believe, off she went to port. That gave us the whole width of the Knob Channel in which to bring her up and get an anchor down. Even that breathing space was barely sufficient and we still had headway as she went outside the line of buoys: the anchors were let go as we crossed it.
Nothing else to do for a while but wait for the engineers to sort it out. Eventually, the chief himself appeared on the bridge holding the evidence in his hands-they were electrical contacts from the steering engine and they were so corroded and burned out that it's a wonder they hadn't packed up long ago. Everybody deserves a bit of luck now and again, but I still do not understand why a big deep-drafted tanker should turn better to starboard than to port when going ahead.

Hugh Ferguson
14th August 2008, 11:39
The only reason I can come up with as to why a ship, with a right-handed propellor, whilst making headway turns quicker to starboard, is because with the rudder hard to starboard the downward motion of the propellor blades on the starboard side are taking water flowing at a higher level which is coming from the hull of the ship as she moves ahead.
In the case of the ship going to port, the up-turning propellor blades are taking water from a lower level and I can believe that this stiller water is tending to cancel out some of the force generated by the wash from the ship's headway. Consequently, it can be demonstrated that a greater force is being applied to a hard over to starboard rudder than for a hard over to port rudder, and as a result the ship turns quicker to starboard than to port.
Almost invariably, when a new ship does her trials and is timed for turning manoeuverability, she is shallow drafted and this may produce different results.

lakercapt
14th August 2008, 14:03
With a (Kort Nozzle) when going astern you can make the head cut any way you want and even keep its heading if wish.
Excellent configuration in close waters but not so wonderful in the ocean swells

Brian Locking
14th August 2008, 14:08
Hugh,
Do not forget you were in a channel and ships are very unpredictable when operating therein. 'Bank effect' etc. It would appear that you were just very lucky.

lakercapt
16th August 2008, 03:50
Used that bank effect on many occassions to my advantage.
When canalling with the wind blowing the stern off keep close to the bank and it holds the stern upwind.
Just need an extra kick with the engines to break it.
Lakeboat captains us that all the time that and interaction when passing in close quaters.

Bill Davies
17th August 2008, 17:48
I experienced the 'Bank Effect' more times than I would like to recall on the 'Bantry Class'.

Hugh Ferguson
1st September 2008, 22:09
The thought has since occurred to me, (as I didn't think we had been close enough to the bank for it to cause any bank effect), that this tanker had a left handed propellor. I vaguely recall such an anomaly in another tanker, Bulk Petrol, some time previously, when I had been informed by the American captain that his ship had been engined with the port turbine of a U.S. Navy war ship. That could have been the explanation of why she sheered off to port. I never thought to ask at the time and now it's too late: not that it matters very much, but it did at the time!

Hugh Ferguson
14th October 2009, 11:54
I've come to believe that there is an element of complacency which exists with some masters who frequently pilot their own vessels in waters only too familiar to themselves.
I was once piloting a ship, in the process of overtaking a "self-taker", off Canvey Is. in the Thames. As we slowly overhauled her I could clearly see into the wheel-house. The person in charge-whoever he was-had his feet up under the wheel-house window watching T.V.!
Could this kind of conduct explain the undoubted history of the involvement of "self-takers" in so many of the worst disasters on the Thames.
Just to name a few that come to mind; the Princess Alice, 640 lives lost; H.M.S. Truculent, 64 lost; Marchioness/Bowbelle, I think about 15; Joseph Rawlinson, 9; and the Monte Ulia which in taking extreme action to avoid a "self-taker" destroyed the brand new, 9 million, No.4 Coryton deep-water oil jetty! And in my own experience in the B.I. Chantala, which, had it been struck just 15 feet further aft, carnage would have been the order of the day on account of most of the cadets being in their quarters packing their gear prior to leaving the ship at the end of the voyage.
Had the Hudson Light struck there, there would have been no solid barrier of jute bales to arrest her progress. She would have ploughed half way through the ship with god only knows what consequences and it was no thanks to them that this worst case scenario did not occur.

(Incidentally, down here in the South West of England, we are growing accustomed to the watch officer in some ship or other, falling asleep and being awoken as his ship went crashing onto the rocks.
Is this indicative of too long hours of duty, or is it the soporific atmosphere of an over-heated wheel-house. There were no heated wheel-houses in any of the ships I last went deep-sea in.)

For anyone who may have caught the T.V. program last evening (13th Oct.) on a commemoration to those lost in the 1989 collision involving the Marchioness and the sand dredger Bowbelle, the loss of those young lives amounted to 51 and not 15 as I had indicated in the above post.

(The Bowbelle changed ownership and was eventually sunk off the island of Madeira. The master of the Bowbelle at the time of the collision, Mr Douglas Henderson, stood trial in 1991 and was acquited. In April 1995 a jury returned verdicts of unlawful killings in inquests held for those who were drowned).

Klaatu83
14th October 2009, 16:51
In the U.S. many of the oil companies used to insist that their tanker captains also have pilot's licenses for the inland waters they used to sail in and out of frequently. That was to enable the companies to save the expense of hiring a pilot. For example Sunoco, which had a terminal at Marcus Hook near Philadelphia, used to insist that their captains have pilotage for the Delaware River. By the same token, Exxon captains who sailed into Valdez, Alaska were expected to have pilotage for Prince William Sound, the 120-mile inland waterway leading to that oil terminal. That was exactly the situation the fateful night the Exxon Valdez ran aground.

I sailed on many different ships in the North Sea and English Channel and, no matter how familiar we felt we were with the waters, we always took a Dutch or British North Sea Pilot. We never had an incident but, if we ever did, I believe that we should probably have been held legally culpable for negligence if we had neglected to hire a pilot.

Long working hours are one reason for crew members falling asleep on the bridge. However, I believe another contributing cause is the modern trend towards one-man bridge watches. Two crew members on watch together tend to keep each other awake, but a lone crew member can easily nod off. Airliners don't allow one-man cockpits, and I feel the same should apply to ships' bridges.

ray bloomfield
14th October 2009, 20:57
Itn seems to me that after reading your thread you are of the sort that are so worried about loosing your job because of changing rules regarding taking pilots that you try kick up so much mud someone might take heed of what you say. How many accidents happen when pilots are on board?
Have you ever been bound up thru the bidges with the tide under you and when upriver of London Bridge and a passi boat in a blaze of lights and loud music blaring pulled away from one of the piers with no warning and charge across the river under your head?
I spent 15mths running to Wandsworth on a much smaller vessel than the Bowbelle and it was not allways fun.

Its obvious that you are trying to protect 'jobs for the boys' but I thought the days of that were long gone, at least had I hoped so.

Bill Davies
17th October 2009, 10:42
The thought has since occurred to me, (as I didn't think we had been close enough to the bank for it to cause any bank effect), that this tanker had a left handed propellor. I vaguely recall such an anomaly in another tanker, Bulk Petrol, some time previously, when I had been informed by the American captain that his ship had been engined with the port turbine of a U.S. Navy war ship. That could have been the explanation of why she sheered off to port. I never thought to ask at the time and now it's too late: not that it matters very much, but it did at the time!

Hugh,

This was fairly common. D.K. Ludwig built many, many ships post war with engines built during the war for the US war effort. He bought a 'job lot' so to speak and 'cling wrapped' them in New Jersey and used them as and when required. Some engines pre-dated the launch date inxs of 10 years.
Members should not confuse this austerity with his operational 'know how'. Quite simply, there was none better as a shipowner.

Brgds

Bill

tabnab44
25th October 2009, 00:13
Having held PECs for 6 UK ports including the Thames ,Medway and Southampton I speak from experience that the fatigue I sometimes suffered when doing "Double Headers" and "Turn Arounds" into long pilotage ports was down right dangerous when I was the only PEC holder onboard. I had no problems staying alongside for a tide to get some rest if required . I am therefore very much against PECs and the only way forward is scrap them and let the Masters take a Full Pilotage Exam and be paid accordingly not with some yearly cheap and nasty payment . On the ships I was on the Max turn around time in port was 4.5 hours and the minimum was 2.5 hrs so not much time for any decent sleep ...followed by a max 6 hr pilotage ... The law certainly needs to be changed so that Port Authorites can insist PEC holders are well rested before entering and leaving their area. Someone said recently that the Worlds Merchant Fleet has become a Third World Industry ...well I'd say its even worse than that . Think I'll write to my MP about my concerns ..Thanks for getting this Topic started theres a lot more who feel the same way..its not about saving the Shipowner Pilotage Fees its about the Safety of the Crew and the ship...in that order.

Billieboy
25th October 2009, 07:24
Rotterdam port solved the PEC problem, by requiring pilots above a certain tonnage, to be taken at Maas 1, or earlier dependent on draught. I believe that some Ferry Masters have full pilot certificates for Rotterdam, as part of their contractual requirements.

sidsal
25th October 2009, 20:55
From no pilots to 4 pilots on board !!!
In the winter of 1947 Broclebank's MATHURA came from India into the awful winter. Took a North Sea pilot on board at the Downs as we were bound for Dundee ( this was common practice for all Brock ships).
On leaving Dundee we could not drop the pilot so he stayed with us to Rotterdam. Leaving there we could not drop the dock pilot because of ice, nor the river pilot. We arrived at Middlesborough with the four on board.
There were ice floes in the North Sea and all the rivers were solid with ice.

Hugh Ferguson
25th October 2009, 21:06
From no pilots to 4 pilots on board !!!
In the winter of 1947 Broclebank's MATHURA came from India into the awful winter. Took a North Sea pilot on board at the Downs as we were bound for Dundee ( this was common practice for all Brock ships).
On leaving Dundee we could not drop the pilot so he stayed with us to Rotterdam. Leaving there we could not drop the dock pilot because of ice, nor the river pilot. We arrived at Middlesborough with the four on board.
There were ice floes in the North Sea and all the rivers were solid with ice.

I remember that winter very well-all the buoys in the Schelde either set adrift by the ice, or taken up!

sidsal
26th October 2009, 20:48
Hugh: Yes - that was one hell of a winter. I coasted too in the MASIRAH and the Elbe and Scheldt were ice from bank to bank. As you say , most of the buoys were gone or taken up.
On clearing out one of the holds I found a hot water bottle and used to got the galley to fill it - sheer luxury. In the saloon the chief engineer led chorus of jeering about the 3rd Mate who was such a nancy boy that he had a hot water bottle in bunk.
Some time later i was ready to go ashore and paint the town red when there was a soft kncking on the door. "Come in" I said - and there was the Chief - very polite and asking if I would lend him the hot water bottle as he wasn't going ashore !! I got my own back - but I let him have it !!
Happy days

ROBERT HENDERSON
26th October 2009, 20:59
Rotterdam port solved the PEC problem, by requiring pilots above a certain tonnage, to be taken at Maas 1, or earlier dependent on draught. I believe that some Ferry Masters have full pilot certificates for Rotterdam, as part of their contractual requirements.

Billyboy
I think you are mistaken regarding the Rotterdam port requiring vessels above a certain tonnage to take a pilot, I was always under the impression it was based on length on the waterline.

Regards Robert

Billieboy
26th October 2009, 21:07
Billyboy
I think you are mistaken regarding the Rotterdam port requiring vessels above a certain tonnage to take a pilot, I was always under the impression it was based on length on the waterline.

Regards Robert

Probably length Robert, I do know that there was a bit of a hoo-haa around the port, when the rule came in; as there weren't enough pilots available at the time, so lots of ovies was being worked.

sidsal
29th October 2009, 23:11
Old hands like Stan Mayes ( and me) will tell the tale of some rogue tankers of anglo American Oil Co - F.J. Wolfe, D,L. HARPER, George W McKnight,and another whose name I forget. They were taken as reparations after WW1 and had twin MAN engines which were a nightmare. In the WOLFE we rowed over piston rings to the Harper in the Arabian Sea where she was wallowing. The Wolfe was in Barrow for 3 months where MAN engineers were working on hydrogen peroxide propulsion for submarines so they could "sort out" her engines. They were as bad as ever. We would arrive at the Nab Tower on 2 cylinders of one engine and have tugs to assist us to Fawley. Their electric steering gear was ahead of its time. A quadrant was moved over electic contacts when the wheel was turned but occasionally the quadrant would snag the wires and short the gear and put the wheel hard over one way or the other. On leaving Cammel Lairds in Birkenhead this happened and we made straight for Woodside ferry landing stage. With both anchors down and full astern we rounded nicely alongside the stage when the waiting passengers fled up the walkway ashore.
Two black balls and the red lights were permanenlty rove for immediate use and one night in Gib Straits when I was on watch and passing the Dutch liner Iohan van Barnelevlt the steering went when I was on watch and we wwnet straight for her and cleared he stern by a short head.
We blocked the Suez canal completely and the pilots knew them well. The deck crowd would assist the engineers to draw cylinders at sea and often we woukld wallow for hours on end. An average of 200 tons of oil would leak on a passage and once in teh SW Monsoon coming from Ras al Had to the G of Aden we had several small tankers following us and taking advantage of the smooth oil slick whci we were leaving behind as as we pitched .

stan mayes
31st October 2009, 00:48
Hi Sid,
A photo of F.J.Wolfe is in the gallery and I commented on how that class were always well maintained. Of course I meant the paintwork and colour scheme.
The other tankers of that class as you will remember were -
Robert F.Hand - James J.Maguire - Edwy R.Brown - Franz Klasen and
Edward F.Johnson.
Regards
Stan

Hugh Ferguson
31st October 2009, 14:41
Old hands like Stan Mayes ( and me) will tell the tale of some rogue tankers of anglo American Oil Co - F.J. Wolfe, D,L. HARPER, George W McKnight,and another whose name I forget. They were taken as reparations after WW1 and had twin MAN engines which were a nightmare. In the WOLFE we rowed over piston rings to the Harper in the Arabian Sea where she was wallowing. The Wolfe was in Barrow for 3 months where MAN engineers were working on hydrogen peroxide propulsion for submarines so they could "sort out" her engines. They were as bad as ever. We would arrive at the Nab Tower on 2 cylinders of one engine and have tugs to assist us to Fawley. Their electric steering gear was ahead of its time. A quadrant was moved over electic contacts when the wheel was turned but occasionally the quadrant would snag the wires and short the gear and put the wheel hard over one way or the other. On leaving Cammel Lairds in Birkenhead this happened and we made straight for Woodside ferry landing stage. With both anchors down and full astern we rounded nicely alongside the stage when the waiting passengers fled up the walkway ashore.
Two black balls and the red lights were permanenlty rove for immediate use and one night in Gib Straits when I was on watch and passing the Dutch liner Iohan van Barnelevlt the steering went when I was on watch and we wwnet straight for her and cleared he stern by a short head.
We blocked the Suez canal completely and the pilots knew them well. The deck crowd would assist the engineers to draw cylinders at sea and often we woukld wallow for hours on end. An average of 200 tons of oil would leak on a passage and once in teh SW Monsoon coming from Ras al Had to the G of Aden we had several small tankers following us and taking advantage of the smooth oil slick whci we were leaving behind as as we pitched .

What a surprise, to see the name of the tanker, George W.McKnight, made mention of in this post. Sometime in Oct./Nov.1944 I was in an American escorted convoy when, about sundown in mid Atlantic, a ship went up in flames in the rear of the convoy. It took me 40 years to discover what had happened but when I did it I learned that it had been caused by a collision with a maiden voyage American Liberty ship, the Howard L. Gibson. She, as I was then to discover, became a write off.

But, the tanker survived to eventually be re-named, after the war, Esso Edinburgh. Sadly, not many of her crew survived as I discovered after a letter in Sea Breezes brought me into contact with one of the 17 survivors, the chief R/O., from whom I got the whole story. About 40 men were lost and the 17, who had been rescued by a U.S.N. destroyer re-boarded the still burning tanker next day and, with help of U.S. Navy personnel, extinguished the fire, got the ship underway and made it to some North African port where she was made seaworthy enough to get to the U.S.A., load another cargo of aviation spirit, and after many months return to the U.K..

bev summerill
7th December 2009, 20:27
I was reading the July edition of the Nautilus Telegraph, there is an article regarding a Belgain RO-RO ship going sternfirst towards her berth and colliding with another ferry, Pride of Bruges,
The Master of the Belgian ferry did not have a pilotage exemption certificate, but another officer who was not apparently signed on the vessel did, hence the reason for going without a pilot, the Master thought the officer with the exemption should do the manoevering, the officer with the exemption did not have ship handling experience.
I held two pilotage exemptions, one for the River Thames as far as Dagenham, for which I filled in a form to prove that I had done sufficient trips up the Thame and that I could speak English, no examination or interview required. The other exemption for the River Humber was granted under similar circumstances, although I did refuse to do my own pilotage when going to Old Harbour or other berths I was not familiar with. When I rejoined Everard's my Thames exemption was tranferred. The one for the Humber I had to go to VTS Humber to see their operations and go before the Harbour Master and senior pilot before it could be transferred as the ships were near the length for sitting the full pilots exam. I was asked various questions about navigation on the river, but nothing about my ship handling abilities or knowledge of various docks or berths. My last company before retiring we were expected to do our own pilotage wherever it was not compulsory including many foreign ports.
I would like to know the feelings of other members of the subject of own pilotage, especially members who are or have been engaged in the short sea trades.

:sweat: :sweat: :sweat:

running to west africa with ed's many of the ports the captain was required to berth his own ships which came as a shock to blue flue captains who came from the far east where there was always someone to hold their hand usually there was a c/o to show them the ropes

Bev

ray bloomfield
7th December 2009, 21:00
Many ports on the African continent I found the pilot only came on board for his bottle and carton of ciggies. For example in Agadir the pilot boarded about 100yds from the berth and expected his bungs to be waiting for him, and he left before we berthed. On the way out we never even saw him, not that he was needed so it never mattered. But we had to pay for a non-existing service and that rankled!!

Cap'n Pete
8th December 2009, 09:46
And what would your reaction be if the Pilot (usually a qualified Master) said I will take the ship to the next Port and only cfharge half as much as the Master?

-----------------------

Tony

I think it highly unlikely that any pilot would offer to take any ship to the next port. In most parts of the world, the majority of pilots do not hold masters certificates and some have not even been deep sea at all. Seafarerers who left the sea to become a pilot normally did so not because they wanted to be a pilot but because they wanted to leave the sea, so why would they volunteer to go back again?

A master can pilot his own ship but pilots are not masters - if a pilot wants to be a master he can go back to sea. A master who wants to pilot his own ship who be given the right to do so in every port in the world, UNLESS THE PILOT AND HIS EMPLOYER ARE WILLING TO ACCEPT FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR ACTIONS.

joebuckham
8th December 2009, 10:44
I think it highly unlikely that any pilot would offer to take any ship to the next port. In most parts of the world, the majority of pilots do not hold masters certificates and some have not even been deep sea at all. Seafarerers who left the sea to become a pilot normally did so not because they wanted to be a pilot but because they wanted to leave the sea, so why would they volunteer to go back again?

A master can pilot his own ship but pilots are not masters - if a pilot wants to be a master he can go back to sea. A master who wants to pilot his own ship who be given the right to do so in every port in the world, UNLESS THE PILOT AND HIS EMPLOYER ARE WILLING TO ACCEPT FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR ACTIONS.

hi capt pete, no short answer to this hardy perennial, but i would say if a master feels he/she is capable of berthing or unberthing his/her own vessel then they should get their companies to apply to the harbour authorities with the view to being examined for the port. the highlighted sentence can be answered quite simply. at best any berthing procedure is a controlled collision and pilots train for years to hone the skill of this control (as you obviously know sometimes this just does'nt work), the port authorities who license the pilots recognise that to protect their property they require people with this skill and a knowledge of the whole port. if pilots were made to accept full responsibility for the accidental damage that sometimes occurs then i don't think there would be many applicants for the job of pilot, and then how would the masters fare who are perhaps not quite as adept and as confident as yourself. (Thumb)

Cap'n Pete
8th December 2009, 17:14
Hello Joebukham,
Very few harbour authorities issue pilot exemption certification to masters of ocean-going ships so getting your company to apply is a complete waste of time.
Port authorities do not license pilots to "protect their property" because if the pilot is at fault in an accident, the port authority will still claim against the ship, the shipowner and the master and not their employee (the pilot).
Pilots are the oldest "closed shop" in the world - it's time they were deregulated. If every master in the world was offered the financial incentive of being awarded 50% of the pilotage fee for piloting his own ship, I think a lot of masters would find the confidence you speak of very quickly.

ray bloomfield
8th December 2009, 18:06
I used to get 50% of the pilotage fee whenever and wherever allowed by the port authority so to receive 570 tax free for the Mersey to Eastham lock and back was quite acceptable

joebuckham
8th December 2009, 20:35
[QUOTE=Cap'n Pete;383909]Hello Joebukham,
Very few harbour authorities issue pilot exemption certification to masters of ocean-going ships so getting your company to apply is a complete waste of time.
Port authorities do not license pilots to "protect their property"[/B because if the pilot is at fault in an accident, the port authority will still claim against the ship, the shipowner and the master and not their employee (the pilot).
[B]correct but they prefer to have berths available and in good order and to that end a pool of trained pilots will help somewhat in damage limitation.
Pilots are the oldest "closed shop" in the world - it's time they were deregulated.
both statements are your personal opinion
pilots are licensed by the harbour authorities

If every master in the world was offered the financial incentive of being awarded 50% of the pilotage fee for piloting his own ship,I think a lot of masters would find the confidence you speak of very quickly
i think there would be a lot than less than you would hope
this argument has been flogged to death in many forums, saloon bars etc. the answer has still not been found. i can't add anymore to it without going round in well trodden circles and or causing upset to those people who for some reason or another resent pilots.
suffice to say while i was still piloting a lot more masters expressed relief and pleasure to see me arrive on board than ever told me that i belonged to a closed shop and therefore should be deregulated so they could do my job for half my fee.

ray bloomfield
8th December 2009, 21:18
and some have not even been deep sea at all.

?????? Why do you have to go deep sea to become a pilot?
Ship handling and local knowledge are what you need to become a pilot, not how to use a sextant and make sure someone keeps your uniform clean.

Hugh Ferguson
22nd February 2010, 17:15
Hello Joebukham,
Very few harbour authorities issue pilot exemption certification to masters of ocean-going ships so getting your company to apply is a complete waste of time.
Port authorities do not license pilots to "protect their property" because if the pilot is at fault in an accident, the port authority will still claim against the ship, the shipowner and the master and not their employee (the pilot).
Pilots are the oldest "closed shop" in the world - it's time they were deregulated. If every master in the world was offered the financial incentive of being awarded 50% of the pilotage fee for piloting his own ship, I think a lot of masters would find the confidence you speak of very quickly.

You may well wonder whatever relevance has this attachment (see thumbnail) to the above, in which Cap'n Pete states that he would like to see the deregulation of pilots and their "closed shop".
The Pilot Gig in the thumbnail is a resurrection of a pilot system-if you could call it that-which existed at the time when pilots were totally unregulated and in truly fierce competition with their own brethren: the first to be able to throw his cap aboard a sailing ship got the job! (It has become a thriving sport and past-time in these parts. This photo, taken recently, is of the ladies having a work-out in their gig).

Unfortunately, as stated, it was completely unregulated and if a ship calling off the Scillies for a pilot failed to get one he just had to make his way up Channel as best he could. Early in the 1800's two East Indiaman, having failed to get pilots, went ashore on the French coast and were total losses.

That disaster resulted in a demand for the regulation of pilot services and a system in which pilots would be attracted to devote their lives, full time, to piloting and nothing else, and it was around 1836 when the Act of Paliament materialised, and Trinity House were given much greater powers in this field.

From then on pilots must have become the most regulated fraternity in the country, for they eventually became subject to not only Act of Parliament laws, but the bye-laws of Trinity House and the bye-laws of the port in which they worked. (I once had my licence suspended for living more than ten miles outside of Dover!)
Compulsory pilotage had arrived and piloting ceased to be a "closed shop" as previously had been the case. Far from being a "closed shop" fraternity they now have virtually no power over their affairs whatsoever: no political clout and certainly no numerical clout-so few in numbers that this day and age there are probably more witch doctors in the land than there are pilots!

John Dryden
22nd February 2010, 22:47
Just been working my way through this thread,found it fascinating.The account by Hugh of the collision of the Chandra and the Hudson Light was really chilling,I imagine the Thames in those days a bit like the M25,slow and congested as I know all the old docks were pretty full.
I remember that the times I went to London with Bank Line the pilot had his own quartermaster? to do the steering so I wondered if that was optional or part of the deal in 1969/70.

Hugh Ferguson
23rd February 2010, 10:04
Just been working my way through this thread,found it fascinating.The account by Hugh of the collision of the Chandra and the Hudson Light was really chilling,I imagine the Thames in those days a bit like the M25,slow and congested as I know all the old docks were pretty full.
I remember that the times I went to London with Bank Line the pilot had his own quartermaster? to do the steering so I wondered if that was optional or part of the deal in 1969/70.

This practice was a legacy that went back centuries. It related to rights awarded to a fraternity later known as the Thames' Watermen (Doggett's Coat and Badge was a part of their culture). It having been written in some obscure document and awarded by a king for services rendered that gave them inalienable rights on the River Thames.
It has a long history as do most things relating to the river.

Billieboy
23rd February 2010, 10:34
I remember long ago 1958-61, the landlord of the Barry Hotel, I've forgotten his name, but he was a, "Doggat's Coat and Badge man", I seem to remember that it had something to do with winning gig races on the Thames, the coat was for participation and the badge for the winners. I do stand to be corrected....

Hugh Ferguson
23rd February 2010, 12:39
That's quite correct, Billyboy. Doggett's Coat and Badge was one of the world's oldest continuing rowing races held annually along the River Thames from London Bridge to Chelsea. The race is a sculling contest between skiffs originally used to ferry people across the river. The boats are manned by watermen who have recently completed their apprenticeship. It was instituted in 1716 by Thomas Doggett, an English comic actor, to commemorate the accession of George 1 in 1714. Doggett provided the cash prize and "an Orange coloured Livery with a Badge representing Liberty" to be awarded to the winner.
The cash is no longer available and the colour of the livery has changed from orange to red.

Many of the watermen were employed as dock pilots as well as helming many of the ships moving in the river. They would board in the locks to move the ship to her berth and vice-versa.

Hugh Ferguson
23rd February 2010, 17:42
You would need to go back a long time in history before you came to anything resembling a "closed shop" in the piloting fraternity. These people ran the Bengal Pilot Service for decades without, apparently, any authority holding any powers to alter the way they managed the service. Provided they didn't lose too many ships in this notoriously difficult river to navigate they were left to their own devices, but I don't suppose that state of affairs exists any longer.
Click HERE (www.shipsnostalgia.com/showthread.php?t=24193&page=12.#287) to view its beginnings

Hugh Ferguson
24th February 2010, 12:40
Joebuckham wrote in one of his posts, "no short answer to this hardy perennial." How true, how true! I have even known this, near pathological resentment of pilots, to spill over outside the work-place. Here's just a couple of examples that almost defy belief.
At a gathering (something to do with the National Trust) somebody introduced me to a Captain Emden (C.G.) who, in the process of shaking hands, remarked, "Captain Ferguson I suppose." My response was to tell him that pilots are specialists and plain Mr. is the correct title.
That disagreeable episode took place long ago, but much more recently, soon after moving to where I live now, a dear old widowed neighbour invited my wife and I in to meet one of the old retired, one-time seafaring, villagers.
He had retired as an Admiral and breezed into the gathering muttering, "I don't usually have anything to do with pilots." Apparently, quite forgetting that I was now a villager and no longer a pilot! Absolutely bizarre! but a good example of how even within the constraints of being polite some still cannot restrain that deeply ingrained animosity.
I suppose, he was just acting the part of the bluff old sea dog, but I did wonder how our dear old widowed neighbour felt about it.

Nick Balls
24th February 2010, 12:54
Yep........ come across a few "Captains" best one for me was a surveyor who introduced himself as such.......... Did'nt seem to to knowledgeable ! It was only after he had left the vessel the Chief remembered ......... 'Oh yes , he was 2nd Cook with me back in 1968 on the ..................
No sorry, Best Masters I ever sailed with are all now just "John' or "Peter' when ashore.

Ian Brown
24th February 2010, 22:34
I believe that ship handling is one of the most satisfying areas of the Master's job. I was thrown in at the deep end when I first went Master with being expected to obtain PECs and the learning curve was steep but fortunately without any bumps. Since then I have enjoyed STS operations and Artic work where there were no proper ports never mind pilots. I have to admit I worry about handing over to a pilot who I do not know but experience has shown that the vast majority are very compenetent. But when the pilot arrives on the bridge and says 'Full Ahead' before even assessing the situation or speaking to me I hear alarm bells ringing.
Just as Master's meet a lot of different pilots so pilots meet a lot of Masters so it is enevitable each is wary of the other until they get a sense of their competency.
On a slightly different point, there are some great ship handling courses available now which I wish I had been on before I started as Master. Consequently I find it astonishing that a young Master today finds it necessary to ask about the most basic manoevre - anchoring. Not much support from his Marine Department to put him in that situation so unprepared.

pilot
25th February 2010, 06:20
Hugh. Captain Emden was most probably aware that a large proportion of ex, seafarers once they come ashore aquire the title "Captain".

pilot
25th February 2010, 06:25
There's also the frequent waste of man power apparent on many regular callers. Masters who are able to obtain a PEC decline to obtain one. Due to lack of financial reward seems to be the main reason given.

Charlie_Wood
25th February 2010, 08:15
I believe that ship handling is one of the most satisfying areas of the Master's job. I was thrown in at the deep end when I first went Master with being expected to obtain PECs and the learning curve was steep but fortunately without any bumps. Since then I have enjoyed STS operations and Artic work where there were no proper ports never mind pilots. I have to admit I worry about handing over to a pilot who I do not know but experience has shown that the vast majority are very compenetent. But when the pilot arrives on the bridge and says 'Full Ahead' before even assessing the situation or speaking to me I hear alarm bells ringing.
Just as Master's meet a lot of different pilots so pilots meet a lot of Masters so it is enevitable each is wary of the other until they get a sense of their competency.
On a slightly different point, there are some great ship handling courses available now which I wish I had been on before I started as Master. Consequently I find it astonishing that a young Master today finds it necessary to ask about the most basic manoevre - anchoring. Not much support from his Marine Department to put him in that situation so unprepared.

It's not often I post these days, but I have to say what an excellent post that was Ian. Both Master and Pilot want the same result and the necessarily instant establishment of a rapport is so very important, the much vaunted Master/Pilot relatonship.

Although I've been piloting for over 20 years now, my years in command are very much in the forefront of my mind when meeting a new Master and appreciating his concerns. I think it would be a great pleasure to pilot your vessel, Ian.

Ian Brown
25th February 2010, 14:06
Hello Charlie, thanks for your kind words.
I never got paid any extra for my PEC efforts and when I raised this sensitive matter with my employers at the time I was told - No chance. We know you like doing it anyway!
Shot myself in the foot there.

ROBERT HENDERSON
25th February 2010, 14:52
I held two PEC's and never got any financial reward for them. I like Ian enjoyed the ship handling aspect of the job, but then again I could still handle my own ship with a pilot on board.
I could never understand some of the animosity between some masters against pilots. On a watch and watch system with a particularly rough passge and feeling absolutely knackered I was often glad to see the pilot on the bridge even though I held an exemption for that port, especially if it was a pilot I knew, while he piloted the ship I could get the documents ready for the customs etc.

Regards Robert

Hugh Ferguson
25th February 2010, 19:24
I can assure bev summerill that none of the Blue Funnel masters I sailed with ever needed anyone to "hold their hand", whether up a West African creek or anywhere else in the world. Most of them had been in command throughout the war and some for a part of it. One of them had the misfortune to lose his ship, his first command, (Pierre Loti) up such a creek-maybe he needed a pilot!
I would be the first to agree that many masters fail to acquire advanced ship handling abilities: it was one such exhibition in a crowded Singapore anchorage, by the best captain I ever sailed with, that probably set me on my going in for piloting. We both left the ship at the end of that voyage, he to retire after a lifetime at sea beginning in sail, and me to go for masters. We had been seven voyages together.
After the anchoring fiasco the chief officer came off the fo'c'stle and told me the Chinese carpenter's comment, "Wha for, makee tly compass?"

Barrie Youde
22nd February 2012, 13:12
A most interesting thread!

All duly noted. All old hat, of course, as we all know, but fascinating to chew over! The points made on ship handling and the effects of transverse thrust were particularly interesting, particularly the over-riding rule that things are not always what they might seem.

I was granted a Third Class Pilot's licence at Liverpool in 1966. One of the first things which I learned (post-graduate, so to speak) was how to complete a damage report, and the inadvisability of ever making an admission of any kind. Accordingly, the question "Cause of damage?" was customarily answered, "Vessel failed to respond as anticipated".

Barrie Youde
22nd February 2012, 13:32
The question is sometimes asked, "Why does marine pilotage still exist as a profession, at all?"

At least one person asking the question has been heard to point out that no equivalent exists in the aeronautical world; and that a fully-fledged aviator is qualified to land at any airport in the world. The response to that point has been made, "And at what altitude would you suggest that a local pilot should be put on board?"

I merely offer the observation here that the provisions relating to compulsory pilotage in the maritime world are not created by serving pilots, never have been and are never likely to be. They are created by the public legislature in the interests of the rest of us.

Hugh Ferguson
22nd February 2012, 17:22
The question is sometimes asked, "Why does marine pilotage still exist as a profession, at all?"

At least one person asking the question has been heard to point out that no equivalent exists in the aeronautical world; and that a fully-fledged aviator is qualified to land at any airport in the world. The response to that point has been made, "And at what altitude would you suggest that a local pilot should be put on board?"

I merely offer the observation here that the provisions relating to compulsory pilotage in the maritime world are not created by serving pilots, never have been and are never likely to be. They are created by the public legislature in the interests of the rest of us.

A professional denigrator no doubt and a clueless one at that: see Post 110.

Barrie Youde
22nd February 2012, 18:44
Hi, Hugh,

#110

The man who observes that Exemption Certificates are rarely issued to masters of ocean-going ships is probably quite right. He fails, however, to mention the fact that ocean-going shipmasters rarely apply; and, in most cases, would have some difficulty (for obvious reasons) in acquiring the necessary local experience which is a fundamental requisite of any pilotage qualification. Most ocean-going shipmasters (and their owners) are equipped with the intelligence to understand that regulated standards apply to pilotage qualification (just as they apply to qualifications for gas fitters and brain surgeons); and if the applicant can see that he cannot meet the stipulated standards then it may quite reasonably be assumed that he also has the intelligence not to waste everybody's time in making an application.

lakercapt
22nd February 2012, 21:57
In my latter years sailing on the Great lakes we frequently used to back haul iron ore from Sept Iles or Point Noir.
We were required to take a pilot and tug for berthing and undocking.
The Lakes shipping companies argued that their masters did all the maneuvering in the "lakes" and should be exempt.
They got their wish and as master you were told to do it without pilots or tugs.
O.K. but when I asked about compensation for doing it as the shipowners saved a substantial amount of money I was informed that it was your job and was expected.
I was amazed at how often the weather was adverse for docking and delays incurred!

Barrie Youde
22nd February 2012, 22:08
#129

Hi, Lakercapt!

I'm told that bears defecate in the woods, too!

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 07:31
It might be worthwhile to point out here that the national and international pilotage legislation is not intended merely to provide a living for pilots, nor to irritate or cause inconvenience to shipmasters, shipowners, harbourmasters nor any others whose own operations might be affected by it; and neither is it intended to create any closed shop.

The legislation exists solely for the protection of the national and international economy against the consequences of faulty navigation. It is because the pilotage legislation designates and creates areas in which pilotage is compulsory with financial charges levied in respect thereof that the law also calls for the highest possible standards in those specific areas. (Environment Agency v Milford Haven Port Authority [the SEA EMPRESS], Cardiff Crown Court, as confirmed and approved by the Lord Chief Justice in the Court of Criminal Appeal, April 2000.) The visiting shipmaster is obliged to take at face value (he has no other alternative) the qualifications and experience of his pilot; thus giving rise to the most serious obligations on the part of the port authorities which grant pilotage authorisations (as pilots' licences are today known) in any compulsory area.

As to being a closed shop, pilotage is no more a closed shop than any other profession or occupation in which qualifications are required as a matter of law; an immediate and obvious example of which is the profession of the foreign-going shipmaster. The "father and son" aspect which has existed and still does exist in pilotage is nothing more than coincidence. There have been a good many pilots' sons who have been dismissed from service because they could not make the grade in training.

In recent years, standards in pilotage (and the value thereof) worldwide have been greatly enhanced by the introduction at Lloyd's Register of the International Standard for Pilotage Organisations.

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 08:34
It might also be right to point out, en passant, that three of the most frequent causes of fault in close-quarters navigation are (i) excess of confidence and (ii) misplaced confidence and (iii) plain ignorance. Know nowt, fear nowt. Crunch.

Spurling Pipe
23rd February 2012, 12:57
As to being a closed shop, pilotage is no more a closed shop than any other profession or occupation in which qualifications are required as a matter of law; an immediate and obvious example of which is the profession of the foreign-going shipmaster. The "father and son" aspect which has existed and still does exist in pilotage is nothing more than coincidence. There have been a good many pilots' sons who have been dismissed from service because they could not make the grade in training.



You must be joking! Liverpool Pilotage was the most incestuous organisation in the UK. AS for qualifications, I don't recall them having any except for maybe Mate (HT) until 1970 when a certain JB was sent up for Second Mates (FG). Things have changed but that is due to chance rather than design.

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 14:00
Hi, Spurling Pipe,

Many thanks for your interest. Please allow me to inform you further.

Qualifications have been required of pilots for longer than they have been required of any other class of mariner. Compulsory examinations at Liverpool were introduced in 1766, some 75 years or so before the Board of Trade introduced certification for other mariners. Qualifications were required for pilots at other ports long before 1766.

At the time you mention (1970) the system throughout UK was governed by the Pilotage Act of 1913. Under the Act, Bye-Laws were made which governed the entire apprenticeship system. The minimum requirements before a Third Class (i.e. the most junior) licence could be granted were that an applicant had to show five years of service and have reached the age of 23. During each year of apprenticeship, preliminary examinations were required before an Examination Committee comprised of a senior pilot, the Superintendent of Pilotage and a Master Mariner appointed by the Board of Trade. Failure to pass any preliminary examination at any stage resulted in automatic dismissal, whatever might have been the apprentice's ancestry. During my own apprenticeship my recollection is that all too many failed to make the grade.

Further examinations were required before the same panel prior to the grant of Second Class and First Class licence, with regulated standards of experience also be met.

As to change by chance rather than design, that is simply not true. With the disappearance of the old apprenticeship system, the serving pilots themselves have ensured that each Liverpool Pilot today holds a Class 1 STCW certificate (Masters Foreign-Going). The recent award of Lloyd's International Standard is a thing which has been achieved following much effort from the pilots themselves and no contribution at all from the harbour authority.

It is a particular delight to let you know that even today there are several pilots' sons in the Service: and I'm only too conscious of the privilege which I once held myself in that regard.

Closed shop it is not and never was. Entry into the Service has only ever been a matter of being in the right place at the right time with the right qualifications.

Hoping this might help you,

BY

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 15:03
Further as to the "closed shop" point, many people have lingered under the same misapprehension as Spurling-Pipe, above. Please let me explain:-

Entry into the Pilot Service at Liverpool was open (in accordance with the Bye-Laws) to any boy making an application between the ages of 16 and 16 and a half. He simply needed to write to the Superintendent of Pilotage. If the Superintendent was satisfied with the letter of Application then the boy would be invited to appear before the Selection Committee which met about every six months, for selection by competitive interview. The Selection Committee was chaired by a Master Mariner representing the Board of Trade. Many applied. Even more (including some pilots' sons) were rejected. The successful ones were then accepted into the apprenticeship system.

My own father was not a pilot's son. In 1925-27 he was a Conway cadet, contemplating a career in the Royal Navy, when the Superintendent of Pilotage paid a visit to the ship by way of a recruiting drive - with the express intention of improving the intake into the Service. (This my very proud Grandmother told me. Dad never mentioned it.) Be that as it may, my Dad joined the Service directly from HMS Conway. Whether or not he ever improved the Service is for others to judge. I know that he never let it down.

Hugh Ferguson
23rd February 2012, 17:15
Ever since this thread took off I have been very surprised at the animosity, expressed by more than a few, against pilots.
Casting my mind back to as long ago as 1955 I cannot call to mind any such feelings expressed to me in any of the thousands of ships I found myself in as a pilot.
Just two that could be described as personal, occurred, one in a German ship and the other on board an Everard.
The latter was an Everard arriving London from a voyage that took her out of Home waters and as a result was compulsory, according to the Bye Laws.
The master, obviously disgruntled, because he was licenced and well able to have done the job himself-he had probably been in and out of the Thames more times than I had! But Bye Laws are Bye Laws and the pilots don't make them so why take it out on somebody who was merely obeying them.
The German master in a good natured manner said to me, 'You look very young to be a pilot' I was 28 years old and probably half his age.

Those are the only personalities that I ever recall being levelled at me during many years and in many ships, so why does it occur now; jealousy, envy?

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 18:05
At the risk of further hand-bagging, the following might be of interest, taken from “A History of the Liverpool Pilot Service” by JS Rees, published by the Southport Guardian in 1949:-

‘EXAMINATION OF MASTERS AND MATES FOR THE MERCHANT SERVICE

In 1844 an enquiry was received from the Admiralty as to whether the Pilot Committee would be willing to undertake the duty of examining the competency of Masters and Mates for the Merchant Service, but having regard to the onerous nature of their existing duties the Committee respectfully declined to shoulder any additional responsibilities. Nevertheless, in 1845, an Order of the Lords Commissioners of Her Majesty’s Privy Council for Trade, constituted the Liverpool Pilotage Commissioners, a board for the voluntary examination of masters and mates employed in the merchant service, and an announcement to that effect appeared in the local press. It therefore became necessary for the Pilotage Commissioners to determine what measures they should take in the circumstances.

At a meeting they held, it was contended that the Act commenced at the wrong end; and that the best course would be to establish a school for navigation, and that it was unlikely that many masters and mates “who must be presumed to be good seamen” would present themselves for examination, however, they decided to nominate a board of examiners. The Order was made under the Authority of an Act of the previous session [of Parliament] to come into force on 1st November 1845 and provided that no person was to be examined as a master under 21 and as a mate under 19 years of age. He had to be sober and well conducted, write a good legible hand, and understand the first five rules of arithmetic. The fee for a master was 2 and for a mate 1.

No evidence has been found that the Pilot Committee became involved in these examinations, if any took place.

Under the Merchant Shipping Act of 1854 it was made compulsory for for masters and mates of foreign-going ships or home trade passenger ships to hold either a “Certificate of Competency” secured by passing an examination or a “ Certificate of Service” granted on proof being furnished that the applicant had previous service as master or mate, in accordance with the requirements set forth in the Act.’

As the Pilotage Commissioners at Liverpool had been deemed competent by the Admiralty as long previously as 1845 to examine masters and mates for the merchant service (who at the time were not obliged to hold any qualification at all), it is a bit rich for anybody to suggest that by 1970 the same body was not competent to examine pilots adequately or appropriately.

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 18:10
Hi, Hugh,

I qualified as a pilot at the age of 23!

The German master of the Eilenau was about six foot eight and 40 years older than me! To my mere six foot one, he was quite terrifying, but perfectly civil after the dust had settled.

Spurling Pipe
23rd February 2012, 18:34
Hi, Hugh,

I qualified as a pilot at the age of 23!

.

And pray tell what seagoing qualifications did you hold at this young age and, what do you hold know?

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 19:53
Dear Spurling Pipe,

It is very kind of you to ask.

My seagoing qualifications at the age of 23 in 1966 are as set out (I hope) in #134 above, i.e a Third Class Pilot's Licence with the addition of a Mate's Home Trade Certificate.

Subsequently in 1968 after further examination I was granted a Second Class Licence.

In 1971 after further examination I was granted a First Class Licence.

In 1976, having held a First Class Licence for five years I was granted a Senior First Class (or unrestricted) Licence which I held until I retired from pilotage in 1988.

Having held a Pilot's licence for 22 years I retired in 1988. Throughout that period my navigation/pilotage was never questioned beyond the damage-report stage; and I was never required to appear before the Pilotage Committee on any navigational matter.

Is there anything else that you might wish to know?

Spurling Pipe
23rd February 2012, 20:28
Thanks Barrie, I already knew. It's all common knowledge in the Black Horse. Shame the way the Moby Dicks gone. Still with RAWs?

Barrie Youde
23rd February 2012, 20:33
Dear Spurling Pipe,

If you wish to contact me at RA Wilkinson & Co, please do.

At your service.

Best wishes,

BY

Barrie Youde
24th February 2012, 07:15
#133 and#141

Dear Spurling Pipe

Please would you explain why you chose to make such defamatory remarks at#133 if as you now say at #141 you knew the true position all along?

Please would you disclose your real name?

Spurling Pipe
24th February 2012, 12:44
Oh, wind your neck in with your defamatory talk! Forever the drama queen.
Used to practice across the river and hold a Masters (FG).

Dave (Mc )

Barrie Youde
24th February 2012, 14:23
Dear Dave,

That's the first time I've ever been called a drama queen; but I suppose that there is a first time for everything.

I'm very sorry that you should choose to insult the Pilot Service en bloc - and also to do it from behind the dramatic protection of a false name.

I was very pleased, however, to hear that you eventually secured a Master's FG Cerificate.

Spurling Pipe
24th February 2012, 19:00
Barrie,

Let me assure you my attention was never to insult the Pilot Service en bloc as I too was a Pilot in the Middle East for several years subsequent to several years in command. Having said that, my description of the LPS pre 1970 was accurate. I think we can now draw a line under this, save boring the other members.


Dave

Barrie Youde
24th February 2012, 21:00
Dave,

Before we draw a line there remain two points which it would be helpful to clarify.

Firstly, for my own part, I have been accused of many things and have been guilty of very many more. Bi-sexuality has never featured in either category and I am delighted to be the father of two daughters.

Secondly, I'm not at all sure that I have your identity quite right yet. The information which you gave me this morning caused me to believe that you are David McIntosh. Later today I looked at your profile, which said that you went to sea in 1953 and served in several companies, but it did not mention any time in the Pilot Service. The David McIntosh I knew was an apprentice pilot about a year my senior and, in 1953 would have been aged about eleven or twelve at most (and therefore most probably have gone to sea in about 1957 or 1958). ("1953"could of course have been a typo-error.)

I see now that you have removed your background altogether from your profile, saying now only that you are located in Wales - which is some distance from the Black Horse and the Moby Dick which you have also mentioned.

Please forgive me for asking, but are you David McIntosh or are you somebody else?

Barrie Youde
26th February 2012, 06:47
Our friend Spurling Pipe seems to have wound his neck in following a request to identify himself.

As to family relations in pilotage services throughout the world and the UK in particular, I know of propriety and family loyalty by the bucketful, all of which has been helpful in upholding standards.

I know of some nepotism, too.

But I never did hear of a single case of incest in pilotage anywhere. Nor even the suggestion of it.

Varley
26th February 2012, 14:33
Why does everyone think nepotism is universally a bad 'thing'?

Would I not know vastly more about a candidate if he had been in my family from infancy until job application rather than divined in a sight unseen interview.

I know exactly what my nephew is good for and wouldn't employ him or recommend him outside of that envelope lest it adversely affect either my purse or my reputation.

Barrie Youde
26th February 2012, 14:53
I'm not at all sure that "everyone" does think that nepotism is universally a bad thing. There is much in what you say; and I make no secret of the fact I once nurtured the hope to be the beneficiary thereof. In the event, I never was, but I remain hugely grateful and hugely conscious of all other things which I have inherited from my forebears. (I'm sure that most members are similarly grateful to their own forebears for gifts handed down, whether tangible or otherwise.)

There is a further discussion (in the Pilotage thread) on the effects of nepotism and the jealousies which it induced; and the fact that it has now been removed with great benefit to pilotage. I cannot imagine that it ever will be or should be re-introduced.

Hugh Ferguson
26th February 2012, 15:39
With regard to nepotism and to the injustices of the"appropriated/choice pilots" system, it would be interesting to speculate as to how the Court of Human Rights would have dealt with it.
Had it existed fifty years ago I can just see myself appealing to it with a plea to revoke the laws which permitted a pilot to shoulder a much greater responsibility than another who was being paid much more for a job of lesser responsibility.
Sometime in the 1960's I calculated that 70% of the "choice" ships were of10,000 grt. or less, and that in an era in which super tankers were off-loading in Lyme Bay into tankers whose loaded draft would allow them to get up to Shell Haven.
Most of the oil companies did not employ selected pilots.

Hugh Ferguson
27th February 2012, 17:00
[QUOTE=Hugh Ferguson;404578]Joebuckham wrote in one of his posts, "no short answer to this hardy perennial." How true, how true! I have even known this, near pathological resentment of pilots, to spill over outside the work-place. Here's just a couple of examples that almost defy belief.
At a gathering (something to do with the National Trust) somebody introduced me to a Captain Emden (C.G.) who, in the process of shaking hands, remarked, "Captain Ferguson I suppose." My response was to tell him that pilots are specialists and plain Mr. is the correct title.
That disagreeable episode took place long ago, but much more recently, soon after moving to where I live now, a dear old widowed neighbour invited my wife and I in to meet one of the old retired, one-time seafaring, villagers.
He had retired as an Admiral and breezed into the gathering muttering, "I don't usually have anything to do with pilots." Apparently, quite forgetting that I was now a villager and no longer a pilot! Absolutely bizarre! but a good example of how even within the constraints of being polite some still cannot restrain that deeply ingrained animosity.
I suppose, he was just acting the part of the bluff old sea dog, but I did wonder how our dear old widowed neighbour felt about it.[/QUOT

I wish I had known, at the time of this meeting, that this Admiral, in coming to the end of his career, held the appointment which gave him charge of Chatham Dockyard-he would have been there at the time of the HMS Truculent disaster-I would loved to have asked him
if he thought the loss of all those lives was worth the Commander not having taken a pilot at the N.E.Spit.

pilot
27th February 2012, 17:52
Many Pilots have never sailed as Master so wouldn't use this title anyway.

Spurling Pipe
27th February 2012, 18:18
Many Pilots have never sailed as Master so wouldn't use this title anyway.

Exactly!

tryengel
27th February 2012, 19:54
Here in the States Masters and senior deck officers might have "pilotage" for specific areas. We have to have a number of trips to the area and take an extensive exam. I had pilotage from San Francisco Bay but I would only use it to take the ship from the sea buoy to the anchorage and back out again. Though I had pilotage to take the ship (VLCC) up the river to the (Chevron Oil) berth after lightering at the anchorage I chose not to use it. I got paid a small amount of money for piloting the vessel so it just wasn't worth the headache and "pucker factor" that comes from having to work with tugs. Ships running to Valdez, Alaska it is common practice not to use a pilot until just prior to docking. Any officer holding pilotage for the area need only be present on the bridge - he wouldn't necessarily be piloting or conning the vessel.

pilot
3rd March 2012, 08:36
There was a theory in at least one Nautical School along the lines of... 5 GCEs passes and Blue Funnel or P&O was the next stage. 3 GCEs and off to Bank Line. No passes and the career step of Pilot Apprentice was assured providing your father was a Pilot and you could pass the lantern test for colour blindeness!
Just a theory mind.

Barrie Youde
3rd March 2012, 09:40
The requirement at Liverpool from mid 1950s was 4 GCE passes including Maths and English. As noted above, there were all too many pilots' sons who failed to make the grade, either before or during apprenticeship.

Barrie Youde
3rd March 2012, 11:27
Dear Pilot,

I'm sorry that you should choose to be quite so rude about the profession which you chose to join so late in life. I can well understand it, though, as I am frequently rude about the legal profession, which I joined late in life. But it helps nobody.

I've known many, many shipmasters who wished to become pilots ; but I have yet to meet a pilot who ever wanted to be a shipmaster.

As to pilotage, I take no credit for having been born into it. I have known it, warts and all, since 1943. My mother did her best to persuade me to pursue some other career, for reasons which are writ large for all who have eyes to see. Pilotage, however, paid for my education as a child. It has put bread on my table all of my life; and it still does, whenever I am privileged to be instructed in pilotage cases. Thus, I owe my whole wellbeing to your present profession.

Please let me know if I can help you.

Best wishes,

BY

Hugh Ferguson
3rd March 2012, 11:47
Quote:- "I've known many, many shipmasters who wished to become pilots".

So have I!

Tony Crompton
3rd March 2012, 13:08
At my Pilot Station we always reckoned that the biggest critics of Pilots
were Masters who had unsuccessfully applied to be Pilots.

Tony

Barrie Youde
3rd March 2012, 15:44
Hi, Tony,

Good shot, sir! Hole in one!

Best,

BY

Pilot mac
3rd March 2012, 16:53
As this thread rumbles on it is interesting to consider recruitment of pilots in this day and age. To recruit a new Pilot without experience, regardless of what ever ticket he or she holds is folly.The ideal candidate should have extensive ship handling experience in the types of vessel he or she would be expected to Pilot. As a starting point, Master FG with current PEC for the district is a distinct advantage.

regards
Dave

Barrie Youde
3rd March 2012, 17:10
#162

Amen to that. Such a candidate would be an obvious first choice.

Hugh Ferguson
3rd March 2012, 17:38
After wasteing an entire year,1954, fruitlessly applying to every vacancy I saw publicised for a piloting job in the U.K., (there were many vacancies at that time), I gave up and went foreign.
(As far as Trinity House, London, was concerned, I didn't even get to the interview stage. Southampton gave me an interview for which they could have saved me the trouble, and the trainfare!)

After a mere 14 months piloting in Aden I responded to a London vacancy and flew back for interview. Less than a month later-July,1955-I was offered a job but was not able to quit Aden before November of that year to take it up.
Despite having been placed top of the list of six applicants I was lucky to still be able to take up another vacancy just four months after losing the first offer.

Such a difference from these days with bigger ships and, consequently, fewer.

Spurling Pipe
4th March 2012, 10:12
The ideal candidate should have extensive ship handling experience in the types of vessel he or she would be expected to Pilot. As a starting point, Master FG with current PEC for the district is a distinct advantage.

regards
Dave

I would agree Dave. Unfortunately, there were many authorities, certainly in the 60s, which would not agree choosing to grandfather in their own with no seagoing qualifications or experience to talk of.

Dave

pilot
4th March 2012, 11:43
I would agree Dave. Unfortunately, there were many authorities, certainly in the 60s, which would not agree choosing to grandfather in their own with no seagoing qualifications or experience to talk of.

Dave

Gents.

I've seen the reverse. Authorised pilots returning to sea on Ferries with a quick route to command and a PCE "in the post on a few occasions.

Rgds.

jmcg
4th March 2012, 12:11
#158

I am indeed somewhat surprised that an honourable calling to become a ships/port pilot has been somewhat denigrated on this thread - whether it be by a few former Masters or indeed some currently serving Pilots.

In my day Pilots were highly regarded, always respected and most welcomed . Certainly as one who very frequently was first to greet and welcome on board the Pilot (from the Jacobs (pilot) ladder and who followed their instructions whilst "on the wheel" these people never ever failed to impress me.

Why some Masters resented the Pilot (as appears to be the message) I just cannot understand at all. I'm sure most Old Men welcomed and treated their Pilots with the utmost respect .

The affinity between the worlds' oldest profession and the second oldest profession (law) cannot be measured in application to the profession of a Pilot. I know where I would be more keen to place my trust.

So carry on Barry - you have seen it from both sides!

BW

J(Gleam)(Gleam)

Barrie Youde
4th March 2012, 14:35
Very many thanks JCMG, for all of your kind words.

Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea.

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;

For tho’ from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crossed the bar.

Tennyson

That will, however, not be for some time yet, I hope.

Best wishes,

BY

Pat Kennedy
4th March 2012, 19:06
I fully agree with Jmcg in post #167.
Pilots were always welcomed on board and treated with the utmost respect on any ship I was on, particularly the Liverpool pilot boarding a homeward bound Bluey at Point Lynas. He always had a few newspapers to hand out, and the latest football results.
Like John, when on the wheel during a piloted passage,I was always in awe of the skill displayed by these men directing the ship into the river in the pitch dark faced with a bewildering array of tiny flashing lights in all directions, it was always very impressive.
Barrie, there is a very interesting thread about pilotage at this link;

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/showthread.php?t=35178
Regards,
Pat

Boatman25
4th March 2012, 21:18
I only was ever treated well by Pilots when on the wheel, I think that the spurling pipe fellow being nasty here Barrie is jealous and has been turned down because he was not good enough to be a Liverpool pilot, he is very jealous of something, sticks out a mile

Michal-S
5th March 2012, 06:49
Hello. I began my Master's career, with a first command in 2003, on a small coaster frequently visiting British and Irish ports. I still value that time very high in my life as time of hard-working and learning the shiphandling. For this I am eternally thankful to all pilots I met then and my experience (mostly from Humber, Firth of Forth and Wicklow) is very positive. Learning shiphandling was just a one thing but all they did have the attitude! I always felt properly respected and there was never any problem with interpersonal communications. I still quote all those pilot proverbs that I learnt thence, as: "slow speed=small dents, high speed=big holes" or "Save a while-loose a smile"etc. With progressing years and experience I could compare that attitude to quite different displayed in other parts of the World and I have been wondering-why all those pilots in.....could not learn from British and Irish ones?! Especially attitude. Best regards to All.

ECW
5th March 2012, 15:46
I only was ever treated well by Pilots when on the wheel, I think that the spurling pipe fellow being nasty here Barrie is jealous and has been turned down because he was not good enough to be a Liverpool pilot, he is very jealous of something, sticks out a mile


.................(Applause)(Applause)(Applause)(Ap plause)

Barrie Youde
5th March 2012, 15:47
#168

The particularly interesting point about Tennyson's words is that he did not say, " I hope to meet my inbred ignoramus with no sea-going experience to speak of" and neither did he say, "I hope to meet the bloke who failed to make the grade". Neither did he even say, "I hope to meet my highly experienced deep-sea Master Mariner", nor even did he say, "I hope to meet my dis-used Admiral".

What he actually said was, "I hope to meet my Pilot, face to face."

I wonder why that was?

Answers on a postcard, please.

Barrie Youde
5th March 2012, 15:53
If it might help, please refer to the thread "Inspiration of Youth." Pilot Ovey Small (mentioned therein) was a pilot's son.

Barrie Youde
5th March 2012, 18:02
I wonder if Tennyson might have been thinking about a BEA pilot perhaps? Or a space pilot? I wonder how many GCE O levels Tennyson's pilot had? Or even if he had a Mate's Home Trade Ticket?

Just a thought.

Barrie Youde
5th March 2012, 18:15
Could a man as intelligent as Tennyson really have put his trust in a common pilot I wonder? It seems pretty unlikely?

And Shakespeare, too, I wonder what on earth he was going on about:

Wise men ne'er sit and wail their loss,
But cheerly seek how to redress their harms.
What though the mast be now blown overboard,
The cable broke, the holding anchor lost,
And half our sailors swallowed in the flood!
Yet lives our pilot still.

Henry VI Part III v 4

Duncan112
5th March 2012, 18:22
Perhaps the Laws of Oleron?

Article XXIII

If a pilot undertakes the conduct of a vessel, to bring her to St. Malo, or any other port, and fail of his duty therein, so as the vessel miscarry by reason of his ignorance in what he undertook, and the merchants sustain damage thereby, he shall be obliged to make full satisfaction for the same, if he hath wherewithal; and if not, lose his head.

Barrie Youde
5th March 2012, 19:01
Vraiment peut-etre!