Risk Focus: Master Pilot Exchange


The UK Club's Loss Prevention department has been analysing claims data for all claims dating back to 1987, producing reports detailing the patterns and trends found for the period.

'Human error' accounts for 58% of all the Club's claims over US$100,000. 524 of these claims involved ships under pilotage. The breakdown of communications on the bridge has been identified as a major contributing factor in many of them. The majority of these incidents include collisions, allisions, groundings (including pollution) and personal injury.

The average cost of these claims has been decreasing overall. However, the average annual cost to the Club from 1987 remains considerable at $16 million. The following advice should serve as a reminder to Masters and their bridge teams as to the importance of good communication and team work during pilot operations.

Solis Marine Consultants is very pleased to be working together with the UK P&I Club to highlight some of the practical aspects of the pilot/master exchange which is a critical part of any passage for the master and bridge team. In the preparation of this focus document, Solis' consultant mariners have used their extensive in-house experience of pilotage and command to draw attention to areas of transits where advance planning and asking the right questions should help to ensure a safe passage to or from port.(




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