Tailored refresher training for PNG marine pilots

 

AMC Search and PNG Ports Corporation have collaborated to develop a bespoke refresher training package for marine pilots from Papua New Guinea.

Two marine pilots – who have the challenging job of guiding vessels safely in and out of ports – recently headed to Tasmania to complete the first course, which was approved by the PNG National Maritime Safety Authority (NMSA) as meeting the requirements for regular refresher training for its pilots.

Student training in the full mission bridge simulator

Training in the full mission bridge simulator in low visibility

General Manager of PNG Ports Corporation, Ian McAllister, said that working in partnership with AMC Search meant they were able to create a programme that met company and national requirements while reducing costs and time away for their pilots.

“Our pilots are required by the NMSA to attend refresher courses that are Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) approved, but most of these off-the-shelf courses are designed for sea-going Masters and don’t run concurrently,” Mr McAllister said.

“This means numerous individual training sessions, which becomes very costly because of the time, travel, accommodation, course fees, and the need to have a stand-in pilot.

“AMC Search engaged with us to discuss and understand our needs before developing a tailor-made programme to cover all the short courses in one go. They also followed up with the NMSA to gain the necessary approvals for the course.”

“AMC Search engaged with us to discuss and understand our needs before developing a tailor-made programme to cover all the short courses in one go.”

The training, which covered bridge resource management, electronic navigation, blind pilotage and ship handling, was delivered through a mix of theory and practice.

Over 50% of the intensive, seven-day course was spent in AMC’s Full Mission Bridge simulator – a full-scale mock-up of a ship and its surroundings.

The simulated training helped the pilots prepare for tough conditions, such as navigation in poor visibility, contingency response, as well as experiencing new and emerging technologies and techniques.

Matt Best, the General Manager of Simulations at AMC Search, designed and delivered the course for the PNG pilots. He said that relevant course content, combined with simulations and flexibility, were key to meeting the needs of PNG Ports Corporation.

“No doubt that our ship simulation facilities are among the best in the Southern Hemisphere. However, what we pride ourselves on is our ability to work with clients like PNG Ports to build training programs that meet their needs, covering everything from course content to on-campus accommodation and meals.

“What we pride ourselves on is our ability to work with clients like PNG Ports to build training programs that meet their needs, covering everything from course content to on-campus accommodation and meals.”

“It’s been fantastic to collaborate with PNG Ports to meet their needs in an efficient and effective way. We’re expecting the next two PNG pilots in Tasmania for training in August, and we hope the training relationship is a long-term one.”

Find out more about our Centre for Maritime Simulation.