Originally Posted by killarney_sailor
I think that watch-keeping on ships is not always that good or professional. Off the coast of Ecuador we had a container ship coming directly at us from astern around noon on a bright, sunny day. One neat thing about AIS is that you can tell exactly that his course is the same as yours and when he will hit you. When I called him on the VHF to ask him what his passing intentions were I got a shocked Indian gentleman who immediately turned about 20 degrees to the left and started heading toward Easter Island (I would have been happy with 5 degrees). He had little excuse with radar, AIS, and eyeballs, but you could? perhaps, maybe, understand since we were probably the only vessels within 50 miles. In the Singapore Strait and other really busy spots there is absolutely no excuse.
One question, in this area do ships have pilots?
There seems to be a lack of basic alertness aboard these commercial ships. I was nearly run down by a tanker in LI Sound last year in broad daylight with unlimited visibility. There just seem to "lights on but nobody home" on some of these boats. With big commercial ships being staffed who knows where, I'd bet there is, in actuality, the cheapest hire at the wheel.