areThere Ship Pilots? -Because
Ship Captains from other regions
dont know the Calcasieu Ship Channel as the Lake Charles Pilots
do. Language barriers can also cause a problem. Some captains speak
very limited basic maritime language. National security is imperative
when handling these large ships. Weather (Fog, blinding rain storms,
wind gusts, and current) can highten risk in the ship channel. Lack
of knowledge of traffic flow and lack of experience in close quarters
navigation by foriegn Captains is another reason why the Lake Charles
Pilots are so important.
Legislation Makes Pilots Mandatory
made a Pilot mandatory on every ship entering the Calcasieu Ship
Channel to help protect the SWLA environment and economy associated
with the Calcasieu Ship Channel, along with the health and public
safety of its citizens.
Pilots Role on a Ship
The Lake Charles Pilots are specifically
trained for safely navigating large vessels through the Calcasieu
Ship Channel. The ship's captain does retain complete
authority on the ship. The pilot's role on a ship is that of adviser,
but his commands are typically given the same weight as those of
the master. The pilot usually stands at the front of
the glass-enclosed wheel house, where he has a nearly 180-degree
view of the ship's surroundings from the height of a 13-story building.
From that position, he calls steering and engine commands, telling
the quartermaster whether to steer left (port) or right (starboard),
and how fast the ship should go.