Take 10: Issue 32
Risk management is a fact of life at sea – and something that all navigators must understand fully. Here are ten key points to bear in mind
1 The reality of risk
Nothing in life is risk-free. The key to avoiding accidents, damage or harm is to manage the risks we face to an acceptable limit.
2 Reducing the risk
Good navigators are those who can reduce the risks they come up against at sea, including the risk of collision, grounding, heavy weather, etc.
3 Teamwork improves safety
Discussing risk with your fellow professionals and sharing knowledge, ideas and practical assistance can improve safety on board ship by a factor of ten.
4 Check the SMS
The ISM Code requires companies to identify potential risks in the Safety Management System (SMS), making it an excellent reference guide for navigators.
5 Anticipation, anticipation, anticipation…
Many risks can be anticipated; indeed, the very nature of passage planning is to anticipate risk, including traffic, weather, currents and more. Passage plans are an excellent form of risk assessment and mitigation.
6 Dynamic risk assessment
Regardless of how good you and your team may be at anticipating risk, never stop checking your situational awareness and assessing risk by all available means.
7 Bridge Resource Management
Proper BRM procedures are a great example of how to reduce risk by all available means, combinining human intervention and the effective use of technology.
8 Tools of the trade
Don’t be fooled into thinking that an understanding of information management comes with rank; the use and understanding of data and information can be gained by all ages and experiences.
Good teamwork reduces risk – and good teamwork is based on good relations between team members. Good relations between team members are enhanced through respect, trust and a smile.
10 Share and share alike
Reduction of risk can only happen when a risk is well understood. Work with your bridge teams and crews through training and mentoring to help everyone understand and reduce risk.
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