Marine safety issues and actions

High risk areas of pilotage

Issue number: MO-2013-011-SI-02
Who it affects: All persons charged with navigating a vessel during pilotage
Issue owner: Brisbane Marine Pilots
Operation affected: Marine: Shore-based operations
Background: Investigation Report 304-MO-2013-011
Date: 22 September 2014

Safety issue description

Brisbane Marine Pilots’ ‘Port of Brisbane Passage Plan’ did not detail any guidance or instructions relating to watch handover or changing the helmsman during high risk areas of a pilotage.

Proactive Action

Action organisation: Brisbane Marine Pilots
Date: 22 September 2014
Action status: Closed

Brisbane Marine Pilots has advised that this safety issue was referred to the company’s Risk Management Team, which has recommended the following amendment to the passage plan:

On the front page of the plan add, “Inform pilot before watch / helmsman are changed.” This is to reflect the ideal, that watch officer and helmsman handovers should be confirmed with the pilot prior to them occurring. It was considered risk increases if the pilot is not provided the opportunity to request the handover be delayed during critical operations. Notification will allow consideration to be given to the appropriateness of the timing of the changeover, so as to ensure this does not occur in critical locations or at critical times, taking into consideration all operational matters. We note high risk areas require case by case consideration since these will largely be dictated by draft. Similarly other critical times such as passing or overtaking, course alterations etc. require consideration.

The inclusion of this item in our passage plan has flow on effects in terms of our wider systems. For example given its inclusion in the Passage Plan, a controlled document, the item becomes a part of Pilot Competency Management System, the standard against which pilots are mentored and checked.

The Passage Plan itself is in the process of being amended for re-printing, incorporating this item and some other changes not specifically related to the safety issue.

ATSB response:

The ATSB considers that the actions taken and proposed by Brisbane Marine Pilots should address this safety issue.

Current issue status: Adequately addressed
Status justification:

The actions taken and proposed by Brisbane Marine Pilots should address this safety issue.

Last update 02 December 2019