Ship Manoeuvring Principles and Pilotage
This publication explains the theory and practice of ship manoeuvring and pilotage. It covers a wide range of manoeuvres and provides practical guidance on the dynamic forces acting on the ship and appropriate use of the ship’s controls. The book is based on the author’s extensive experience as a pilot and is both informative and easy to read.
This book explains how to undertake a wide range of ship manoeuvres. It provides guidance on the stages and potential risks of each manoeuvre and highlights some of the less obvious features that are commonly overlooked. The guidance will allow ship handlers to develop an understanding of ship manoeuvring characteristics and to anticipate how a ship will react in the prevailing conditions.
I decided to write this book as a result of a chance conversation with my colleague, Peter Russell, about the advantages of experience when piloting ships and how much easier it would have been when starting out on our careers as pilots if we had the benefit of the experience we have gained over the years. At the end of our conversation, Peter suggested that I write this book.
Working on the assumption that anyone who is to handle a ship will have the necessary qualifications and will already know the technology and theory. This book is to try and bridge the gap between an experienced ship handler and those with the theory and technology, who are about to start handling ships and want to equip themselves with some ground rules, guides, measures and references to help make them more competent at handling ships.
Experience cannot be learnt, it’s the result of getting things right and getting things wrong, you try not to repeat the things you got wrong, and to remember the things that you got right. The ‘benefits’ of experience can be learnt, written down and handed on and that is what I have chosen to try and do. Of course there is no guarantee it will stop you from making mistakes, no more than I have stopped making mistakes, but let’s hope that you will gain enough from reading this book so that any mistakes you do make will not be big ones.
What is a man who learns nothing from his mistakes? Better still though to learn from other people’s!
A great number of the ideas I have included in this publication are as a result of observation, noting how a ship behaves and then working out how and why it happened that way and after that, seeing if it happens the same way again next time.
At the end of the day, no matter how much you have learnt from reading books or from what you have been taught, nothing can completely take the place of experience. I don’t think even simulators, no matter how realistic they are, and I’ve had quite a lot of experience on them, can take the place of the real thing. Because you do not get that tension, that anxiety and sometimes fear that you have when it is for real and still have to continue doing the job competently. Anyone who has learnt to drive a car will have gone through the same experience, that moment after having passed your driving test when you have your first near-miss, or worse still if you don’t miss; it’s just the same on ships except it all happens a lot slower, as there are no brakes or grip in the water, it just means you have longer to experience the effect and it is bigger, very much bigger.
Paul R Williamson
BASIC SHIP HANDLING. REDUCING A SHIP’S SPEED TO MANOEUVRE AND TURN AROUND
Manoeuvring plan (not passage plan), comparison by ship’s lengths, a standard ship, old and modern designs, reducing a ship’s speed to manoeuvre and turn round, speed indicating instruments and GPS etc
TRANSVERSE THRUST AND TURNING A SHIP SHORT ROUND
Single and twin screws, fixed and CPP, single and twin rudders, left and right handed inward and outward screws convention
CENTRE OF TURN AND SIDEWAYS SLIP
Position of the centre of turn relative to the ship’s speed, sideways slip
THE EFFECT OF WIND AND OTHER EXTERNAL FORCES ON A SHIP
Wind force chart etc, drift caused by the wind on the loaded and light ship and the effect of trim. The wind effect relative to the position of the ship’s centre of turn, on an even keel and trimmed by the stern. The effect of superstructure in the wind. The wind effect due to its relative direction. Additional superstructure wind effects. The Bernoulli effect. Other external forces, including tugs etc
ASSESSING A SHIP FOR MANOEUVRING
Assessing the effect of trim on the ship’s wind force point and wind resistance point and how it will affect manoeuvring a ship, relative to the manoeuvring space available
GENERAL BERTHING AND UNBERTHING GUIDELINES
Berthing a ship in calm conditions allowing safety margins, use of indicating instruments when manoeuvring, berthing in tidal waters, allowing for the transverse thrust, berthing stern to tide, berthing to buoys, why a ship appears to increase speed as it approaches its berth
BERTHING A SHIP USING AN ANCHOR
With a wide tide, onto a weather berth and when berthing with an offshore wind
BERTHING AND UNBERTHING USING TUGS
Conventional and tractor tug capabilities, positioning tugs for unberthing and berthing, girting
Transverse thrusters and azimuth units
EXAMPLES AND CALCULATIONS TO APPROACH A BERTH
Planning approach to a berth, (a) a small ship without any aids and (b) a big ship using tugs
MANOEUVRING IN FOG BY RADAR
Assessing the limitations of a radar and determining a radar’s ability, calculating a ship’s speed by radar, allowing for position of radar scanner
ANCHORING A SHIP
Anchoring in an open anchorage, and in a restricted anchorage, choosing a position where to drop the anchor, anchoring a ship using a radar with various presentations
Passage planning inbound and outbound
PORT APPROACHES, AND NAVIGATING NARROW CHANNELS
Allowing for set and drift, overtaking and other manoeuvres, establishing a ship’s identity by VHF, methods for losing a ship’s way quickly, ships sailing before the wind
TUG AND TOW
Piloting a tug and tow on a passage, berthing towed vessels
HANDLING CHARACTERISTICS OF DIFFERENT SHIP SHAPES
Handling differences between narrow deep ships and short beamy ships
Spring and neap tides, new and full moon, tidal streams, counter currents and slack water, and their effect on handling ships, the change of direction of tidal streams at high water and low water
SQUAT, INTERACTION, REACTION, DRAG AND GROUNDING
Why and when ships squat and warnings to look for, interaction between ships, reaction between a ship and the bottom, a ship’s loss of speed due to drag. Manoeuvring in shallow water. The effect of pressures caused when manoeuvring a ship with the minimum under keep clearance reaction to grounding
Stories of perfectly true incidents that I have experienced that most seafarers would have found difficulty believing
Agreeing the ship’s program etc. Giving engine orders and helm orders, care with twin screwed ships with single rudders, giving directions to tugs, checking the gyro compass, steering settings, noting the difference in wind directions when navigating rivers, climbing a pilot ladder and how to board a submarine
The pilot’s responsibilities relative to the ship and to the shore authorities
Captain Paul R Williamson
Paul Williamson came to the Trinity House Pilotage Service in 1969 from a conventional merchant service career and he retired as a senior Port of London pilot in 2000. His career contained a breadth of experience that is difficult to match and his practical shiphandling skills result from his handling of all ship sizes up to and including VLCCs.
- Number of Pages:
- Published Date:
- April 2013
- Binding Format:
- Book Height:
- 240 mm
- Book Width:
- 150 mm
- 0.3 kg
Captain Paul R. Williamson