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The Use of VHF and AIS as Aids to Collision Avoidance

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  • The Use of VHF and AIS as Aids to Collision Avoidance

    Dear Qualified Officers,

    I would very much appreciate a short amount of your time.

    I am a final year Deck Cadet studying at the University of Plymouth. I am undertaking the daunting task of creating a Dissertation, entitled The Use of VHF and AIS as aids to Collision Avoidance.

    Whilst there are countless reports of collisions occurring as a direct result of the miss use of VHF and/or AIS, and various legislation warning of the risks involved, both are still integral parts of the navigational bridge.

    The purpose of my study is to explore the opinions and experiences, to gain a consensus on the use of VHF and AIS as aids to Collision Avoidance. Therefore, I am happy to invited you to participate in the following questionnaire; as Navigational Officers, be that newly qualified, with many years of experience, or retired, your practical knowledge and understanding is very valuable to the validity and success of my study.

    There are no right or wrong answers and completion takes approximately 10 minutes. Confidentiality is guaranteed, with no names required. The completion of the questionnaire is entirely voluntary and you are free to withdraw from it at any time.

    Your participation would enable me to compile a successful Dissertation and I would be truly thankful!

    Further to this, if anybody knows of any relevant documentation, MAIB reports for example or other similar studies, I would be very interested to read them!

    If you have any questions about my questionnaire or study, I am more than happy to answer them.

    Thank you very much

    Brianne Jane Wright

  • #2
    Interesting topic.

    basic advice, always follow the rules

    I do use VHF to ask a vessels intentions. This is mainly so I know there is someone on the bridge who is awake and paying attention. If asked yourself a standard quote is "it is my intention to obey the rules!!!"

    I use AIS to get their callsign, and its also useful to see at a long range what vessel type it is and what their navigational status is. Although AIS is not specifically mentioned in the rules I refer you to "all available means" mentioned in rules 5 and 7 which must surely include AIS. You may be very close to a vessel before you see it is a fishing vessel displaying a dayshape or with nets visible behind it if you get my drift. Its also useful to compare it against arpa as an equipment check (although no one will ever tell you this).




    • #3
      AIS provides a much longer range and faster idea of what a target is doing without having to wait for ARPA to settle. I've found the best way to use AIS is on a system that allows you to merge targets with ARPA targets so the 2 plotting methods cross check each other.

      To boldly go.....
      Forum Administrator


      • #4
        For 3 months I was stuck on bridge watch with a 3rd mate who would use the VHF every single time there was a ship in range - no matter how simple the situation - they would even call other ships up and start to tell them what to do with a tcpa of 20/ 30 minutes. Madness!
        Sent using advanced stick technology.