The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recently announced its Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements for 2019-2020.
Not surprisingly, “Eliminate Distractions” made it to the top ten on the list. The NTSB was quoted as saying: “Contributing to the distraction problem is the widespread belief by many that they can multi-task and still safely operate a vessel. But multi-tasking is a myth; humans can only focus cognitive attention on one task at a time.”
Although working with fellow crewmembers, communicating with company dispatchers, checking instruments, maintaining equipment and handling a seemingly endless assortment of tasks are all part of the job...many of which can be quite distracting in themselves...turning your attention to anything other than safe vessel operation is sure to impair a professional mariners' already overburdened performance.
But What Can You Do?
As you are all aware, the NTSB has investigated several marine accidents recently where distraction was deemed a cause or contributing factor. And, although you may not be able to avoid all the distractions that are directly associated with your job, you can protect yourself by avoiding any distractions (i.e., unnecessary conversations with shipmates, calls and text messages to family, social media postings, etc.) that are not absolutely required to perform the task at hand.
After all, at the end of the day, it is your license and reputation that is on the line.
Since 1935, MOPS has protected the licenses and livelihoods of more than 80,000 deck and engineering officers, state and federal pilots and certified tankermen.
We cover USCG licensed officers operating aboard vessels of any size in every sector of the maritime industry. If you want a quote, give us a ring at 800-782-8902, ext. 3608 or 3302. Or fill out our online form and we'll email you a quote.