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post #9 of Old 03-03-2013
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Re: Tips on Watch Standing

There are two things I would change for offshore work:

If you keep the interior of your boat lighted at night (even with just red light), night watchstanders should wake their reliefs 1/2 hour before the change of watch. The oncoming watchstander should spend 15 minutes in the cockpit in the dark before the watch to adapt vision to night levels. Yeah, most folks don't do this. Call me a fanatic if you like, but I trust the mark I mod 0 eyeball above all else, so it has to be able to see well.

I always use paper charts, which comes in handy with electronics failure. Record your position in the log every hour, and if out of sight of land plot your position on the chart. Compare your position to your intended track and compute set and drift. record it in the log. If you are "significantly off track" (the definition of significant depends on where you are, traffic, and distance to nearest hazard) notify the skipper. If it is an unexpected amount or direction or is greatly changed, notify the skipper.

And finally, I have something I always add no matter where you are or what you are doing:

If you don't understand what you are seeing -- weather, lights, equipment, objects in the water, anything at all! Wake/notify the skipper.

T. P. Donnelly
S/V Tranquility Base
1984 Islander 30 Bahama
Pasadena, MD

Last edited by dacap06; 03-03-2013 at 07:54 AM.
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