ShipSpotting.com Forum

Shipspotters all over the world => Shipping News and information => Topic started by: MattB on September 28, 2015, 04:44:02 pm



Title: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: MattB on September 28, 2015, 04:44:02 pm
Hello there,

I was wondering what the preferred method of boarding a vessel is for pilots, personally or in general?
I'm guessing that for Captains of vessels, any method would be advantageous just as long as the pilot managed to get aboard !

But have there been any instances/incidents where anyone has lost their footing & taken a tumble into the briny?
There must be some scary stories out there to be shared.

Kind regards,



Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Paul Finnigan on September 28, 2015, 10:00:24 pm
Hi Mattyboy,

There are a few videos on YouTube of pilots boarding which may answer some of your question.

Cheers. 


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Captain Ted on September 28, 2015, 10:07:52 pm
Well Mattyboy

now and then it goes the wrong way,, in Houston a pilot died loosing his footing and fall into the water some years back. Not sure I think the same happened at SW pass the entrance into the Mississippi River. I am sure it happens all over the world. After all , stepping from a small pilot boat onto a ladder which moves with the vessel which has it down the side of the hull is a dangerous job.
Just look at Chris Howels pictures he takes now and then out there !!!!

brgds
capt ted


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: WadeArmstrong on September 29, 2015, 06:18:59 am
As a pilot, I prefer:
1.  a low side-port over a high deck.
2.  A fixed installed ladder (sometimes on the stern) over a portable pilot ladder.
3.  A sturdy ladder over a flimsy ladder (I have destroyed a couple of sub-standard pilot ladders).
4.  A ladder that lays flush against the hull over a ladder that hangs away from the hull in mid-air.
5.  Boarding in sheltered water over boarding in rough seas.
6.  For large ships, an elevator instead of eight levels of stairs.
7.  Because the threat of going in the water is always present, warm tropical water with minimal currents over frigid northern waters with strong currents.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Clyde Dickens on September 29, 2015, 08:29:50 am
Thank you Wade for the summary.  I think you must be brave as well as fit.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Captain Ted on September 29, 2015, 01:12:26 pm
@ Wade,, you forgot with "fresh brewed coffee on the bridge instead of instant " !!  :-))

btw,,where you are as pilot ?

brgds
capt ted


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Glenn Towler on September 30, 2015, 10:38:25 am
There was a car carrier that used to visit Hobart where the pilot hopped off the pilot launch into a man cage that was lowered by a crew member in it to the deck level of the pilot launch before being
lifted 15 decks.  Where he then had a short walk up to the bridge only have to climb 1 set of stairs.




Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: MattB on October 11, 2015, 11:07:37 am
Thank you for those detailed insights.

@Wade So that vessel in the photo has a dedicated pilot boarding ladder? I'm imagining how difficult it would be to board in a heavy sea.

I've learn't something from your list. I was unaware that cargo vessels had elevators. I thought it was just cruise-ships that enjoyed the exclusivity of elevators.

@Paul & @CaptTed Those videos are amazing. That pilot boarding FORMOSABULK BRAVE whilst in ballast - RESPECT to him for climbing that rope ladder with no safety gear. I wondered if it is good practice for receiving ship skippers to keep a watch out on the bridge. There didn't appear to be anyone keeping a look out on the bridge wing whilst the pilot boarded.
Maybe if some kind of netting could be rigged at the base of the ladder but also allows the pilot to climb up through it could be devised.

You certainly look like you have to fit to do that kind of job. Legs like Superman !!




Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Captain Ted on October 11, 2015, 01:43:36 pm
@MattyBoy,,, as per Wade,,those ships are boarded via tug boat from the stern not via pilot boat.

Nets would be more hinderance then help!!
I am pretty sure that there was someone watching, one of the things I always do, being outside on the
out wing and watch the pilot boarding. Of course possibly nowadays as not "not needed" anymore, just push a button. Also possible that the ship has cameras in the wing so that one can follow the action from inside.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: WadeArmstrong on October 11, 2015, 05:59:07 pm
Here is a shot of a pilot boarding via a good pilot ladder on a clean hull in good weather, many of the risks mitigated, but still quite a climb.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: MattB on October 11, 2015, 08:17:25 pm
Hmmm, interesting picture. So essential equipment needed for a sturdy climb include (but not limited to), a rugged pair of boots & gloves !


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Malim Sahib on October 11, 2015, 09:32:16 pm
There are different schools of thought on gloves, some prefer not to use them as in their opinion they can get a better grip without them.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: WadeArmstrong on October 11, 2015, 10:04:37 pm
Agreed on the gloves.  I only wear them where I expect a really dirty ladder (on semi-submersibles fouled with seaweed or barnacles).


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: MattB on October 12, 2015, 10:32:05 am
@Wade Have you ever boarded a submarine? Firstly, I always thought that the military were a fairly suspicious bunch & wouldn't allow pilots on board. Secondly, due to the curvature of the hull, I'm guessing there's no easy way except for a long-jump to gain a foothold.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Jim McQuarrie on October 12, 2015, 10:38:01 am
Think There are rungs on side for climbing up


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Captain Ted on October 12, 2015, 12:53:31 pm
@ Wade,,and don,t forget the pilot ladders after bulkers loaded grain. Usually the ladders are covered but that dust gets anywhere and can be quite dirty. Washing them makes them wet and sometimes leaves here and there a kind of grim. Can be very dangerous, one tries to clean them or keep them clean, but nonetheless using them and keeping them both not as easy as it may look.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: WadeArmstrong on October 12, 2015, 08:37:48 pm
@Wade Have you ever boarded a submarine? Firstly, I always thought that the military were a fairly suspicious bunch & wouldn't allow pilots on board. Secondly, due to the curvature of the hull, I'm guessing there's no easy way except for a long-jump to gain a foothold.
I board submarines on a daily basis.  Best method is a brow rigged from the pilot boat or tug to the submarine's deck.  Second best is waiting until the tug is secured alongside, then going across the rounded hull with the aid of a long and sturdy boat hook.  Jumping is a bad idea, they have been underwater and the rubber hull tiles are slick with growth, a recipe for an unplanned dunking.


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: MattB on October 17, 2015, 10:57:55 am
I didn't realise the subs had rubber tiles. Is that common on all submarines?


Title: Re: Harbour pilots - method of boarding.
Post by: Trelawney on October 21, 2015, 02:20:00 pm
But have there been any instances/incidents where anyone has lost their footing & taken a tumble into the briny?
There must be some scary stories out there to be shared.

The pilot boat in Falmouth, England is named LK Mitchell after the pilot Laurie Mitchell who lost his life boarding a ship in foul weather in 1974. He slipped and was caught between the two hulls. In 1978 a new pilot boat was launched for the port - and named after him. She is still in work in Falmouth as the #2 boat for the harbor pilots.

http://www.businesscornwall.co.uk/latest-news/pilot-vessel-lk-mitchell-back-in-action-123 (http://www.businesscornwall.co.uk/latest-news/pilot-vessel-lk-mitchell-back-in-action-123)for news of the refurbishment and rededication in 2009.