TRAINING FOR MARINE TRAFFIC CONTROL

W. Burger and A. G. Corbet

Peer Reviewed

Abstract: There are some masters and pilots who find their blood pressure rising when the subject of shore-based Marine Traffic Control (MTC) is mentioned. The reasons for this are varied and range from the fear of a loss of job-satisfaction, or even loss of job, to a distrust of the capabilities of such a system, that is, they believe that they might become mere ‘puppets on a string’-and that this ‘string’ might break and leave them, and then alone, to suffer the consequences. The authors of this paper must say at the outset that although full shore-based MTC is generally regarded as being technically feasible, economic factors will preclude total automation in the foreseeable future, so masters and pilots should have no fear of being made redundant. However their other feelings of apprehension are justified - the nature of their work would change to a certain extent, it already has in some areas, and the greater inter-dependence of the parties in a traffic control system could mean that some might feel a loss of job satisfaction. Coupled with this is the fact that there is no statutory framework for the formal training and certification/licencing of marine traffic controllers so they cannot at present suffer the same or similar penalties for incompetency as the master and pilot. Thus, if there is an accident, the master and pilot could be left ‘holding the baby’. This latter situation does not exist in Air Traffic Control (ATC)- air traffic controllers are formally trained and licenced and are liable to suspension from duties and loss of licence in the event of incompetence; for example, they are immediately suspended from duty, pending an inquiry, if separation limits have not been maintained or are even suspected of not having been maintained.
Published in: NAVIGATION, Journal of the Institute of Navigation, Volume 22, Number 2
Pages: 157 - 164
Cite this article: Burger, W., Corbet, A. G., "TRAINING FOR MARINE TRAFFIC CONTROL", NAVIGATION, Journal of The Institute of Navigation, Vol. 22, No. 2, Summer 1975, pp. 157-164.
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