The third edition of The Nautical Institute’s book Bridge Watchkeeping was launched today at a free webinar entitled ‘Bridge Watchkeeping – Keeping Vessels Safe’.
Human error leads to many navigation-related shipping casualties. Between 2015 and 2020, 71 were recorded, each incurring insurance claims of more than $10 million. These incidents caused significant damage to vessels, cargoes, the environment and the reputations of companies and the shipping industry, and some of them cost lives. All who have responsibility for ships, their cargoes and crews therefore have a vested interest in promoting best practice in watchkeeping.
The new edition of Bridge Watchkeeping is set to become an indispensable companion for newly qualified watchkeepers as they take on their new responsibilities. The text has been completely revised and fully updated for the electronic bridge era.
The clear text makes the book a pleasure to read as author Captain Mark Bull FNI covers the OOW’s tasks in logical order, highlighting potential pitfalls and ways to avoid them, from preparation for sea, pilotage and the transition from coastal to ocean navigation, to anchoring, berthing and closing down the bridge after arrival in port.
Capt Bull stresses the importance of the OOW never relying on a single source of information and working on the principle of ‘combine and compare’ rather than ‘either/or’ when it comes to information sources.
The book maintains NI’s user-friendly style of layout, with a comprehensive index, clear illustrations and helpful tips and cross-references.
As Captain Peter Boyle FNI says in his Foreword to this third edition:
A careful reading and study of this book will give the junior navigating officer a very firm professional foundation.