Marine Link
Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Totem Support Tool Helps Avoid Collisions

May 2, 2013

  • Photo: Totem
  • Photo: Totem
  • Photo: Totem Photo: Totem
  • Photo: Totem Photo: Totem

Totem ECDIS provides Decision Support tools for collision avoidance. The decision support tool gives the OOW a concrete advice on required course change or speed reduction needed to be at a safe distance from all targets.

In this circular we want to show another unique feature of Totem ECDIS, intended to prevent “ECDIS assisted” accidents.  Concrete warning on this subject was given in BIMCO report, :  "where officers are inadequately trained and the equipment is incorrectly set-up then things go wrong." The article said several groundings were marked as "ECDIS assisted."

To avoid such ECDIS-assisted incidents, a new feature in Totem ECDIS is the Change Shift procedure.  The need for such a module was demonstrated in several incidents involving wrong use of ECDIS by navigators, either due to ignorance of the OOW or due to incorrect setup of the ECDIS. The procedure should be implemented at the beginning of each shift on the bridge by the OOW commencing a watch the change shift test will give the OOW a clear picture of the system functionality and will ascertain that the system is ready for the shift period.  A set of dozen tests is carried out during a period of 1-3 minutes, covering important items such as GPS position verification, safety contours, ascertaining safe course and updated charts for the next watch, etc. The procedure contains shortcut buttons that makes the checking procedure very easy and friendly, with hints and assistance where required. 

Documentation of all checks is being stored in log files, including the date, time, officer’s name and a short summary of the results of each test. The log files are available for replay and review at all times and can be viewed by Master or superintendent etc.

This procedure will increase safety onboard, the manufacturer claims,  and will help to prevent fatal mistakes caused when the officer who just began his watch is unaware of the exact setup of the equipment, possible offsets or different safety contours. The tests are designed to prevent erroneous decisions based on wrong interpretation or unawareness of the current setup.

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