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Shipowners and managers should better understand ECDIS and electronic chart update management to decrease the risk of negative findings during ship inspections.
London P&I Club joined forces with London Offshore Consultants to develop a guide to commanding ECDIS and electronic navigational charts (ENCs).
London P&I Club noted that the more common failings determined included a lack of:
“Managers should ensure the users of such systems, while potentially experienced navigators, are able to apply vital navigation skills such as manual position-fixing and parallel indexing in the ECDIS environment.” -- London P&I Club
ECDIS and ENCs are crucial onboard navigational tools that enhance navigational safety – when well-controlled and in the hands of well-instructed users.
Modern ECDIS systems are now so useful that inadvertent actions of settings may be applied, which can go unnoticed. Safety contour and safety depth functions may be misused rendering the alarm meaningless.
The term “ECDIS Assisted Grounding” is certainly not new. Recurrent themes often include the following:
When appropriately operated, ECDIS is an exceptional tool that extremely improves situation awareness and operational efficiency, and can reduce errors. On the other hand, the most common operational mistake is the over-reliance or lack of familiarity that can lead to devastating consequences.