Deck officer is the most important member in the Deck Department as he holds a responsibility to ensure smooth functioning of the unit. Anchoring is among one of the significant operations that come under the jurisdiction of the Deck officer. The work includes the management of important shipboard equipment and requires a great level of circumstances awareness. The main responsibility of the officer when the ship is at anchor is to make use of anchoring mechanism and available human resources to carry out the operations securely and effectively in accord with the ship Captain’s instructions.
Managing the anchoring operations responsibly can only be possible if you are familiarized with the reporting process and the Deck officer should have a better understanding of work management. Giving clear instructions to the ship crew members received from the Captain and give regular updates of the anchoring operations to the bridge is also the duty of Deck officer.
When the officer receives the information to make preparations for anchoring then he should ensure to check that all crew members are wearing proper protective gears and using equipment safely. The safety of the manpower engaged in the anchoring operations is the job of the Deck officer and therefore, he should keep a watch on them, make them aware of unsafe practices and guide them to ensure the operations are managed safely.
Apart from this, the officer should also confirm the anchor used for the operation’s purpose. In case of using a hydraulic windlass ensuring that the pumps are started before starting operations and inspecting the working of the windlass and its controls also come under the Deck officer.
While there are many responsibilities of the Deck officer during anchoring operations, reporting is another crucial task that needs to be performed effectively. The officer is accountable to work as per the command received from the Ship Captain and should give an update about every task to the Captain.
Good knowledge of anchoring operations is required to manage the work in the most effective manner and Deck officer must possess leadership, teamwork and communication skills to make sure the operations are safely carried out.