The current guidelines for ship handling in severe seaway conditions are based on practical knowledge and rules of thumb attained over decades of experience with conventional naval ships. While this has worked in the past to ensure that correct ship handling decisions are made while in severe seaway conditions, at sea time and resultant practical ship handling opportunities for watch officers are diminishing in today’s navies. There is a heightened need to explore and develop new methodologies for training of watch officers, CO’s and XO’s in ship handling in the severe seaway environment. In addition, recent simulation studies have shown that some traditional guidance may actually put ships at increased risk of capsize. The Operator Guidance, and Training Working Group has been formed to examine these issues and develop a shared perspective for reference by member navies in addressing training, technology and operator guidance needed to manage the risk of capsize at sea.The OGTWG aims to develop a shared view on the future of naval stability operator guidance and training for severe seaway conditions. The group is to develop a draft set of Naval Stability Operator Guidance and Training guidelines which can be utilised by the participating navies at their discretion.
The OGTWG is considering the following working points:
- All aspects of ship handling in severe seaways related to capsize risk management.
- Collate and develop a view on strengths, weaknesses and interpretations of existing heavy weather operator guidance.
- Assess requirements for training and evaluate ship use of simulators as training tool.
- Develop a set of recommendations for the use of heavy weather Naval Stability Operator Guidance and Training.
- Develop a draft Naval Stability Operator Guidance and Training Guidelines incorporating the working points above.