Contributing to the accident was the lack of adequate information aboard the Queen Elizabeth 2 about how speed and water depth affected the ship's underkeel clearance.

There are many other examples of human errors:

… the probable cause of the Ziemia Bialostocka's ramming of the Sidney Lanier Bridge was a failure of the pilot to maneuver the vessel properly because he did not make himself aware of and use all available maneuvering information and his failure to stop the vessel when he realized that it was not responding as he expected (NTSB, 1988b)

.… the probable cause of the grounding of the U.S. tank ship Star Connecticut was the failure by the Star Connecticut's master and the Hawaiian Independent Refinery's mooring master to plan and coordinate the vessel's departure from the single point mooring buoy, which resulted in the master's inability to focus on and prioritize the critical tasks associated with departing the single point mooring buoy while maneuvering close to a shoal area known to have unpredictable ocean currents (NTSB, 1992)

.… the probable cause of the collision between the Juraj Dalmatinac and the Fremont tow was the failure by the ship's pilots and master to effectively use all available equipment and personnel to evaluate the developing situation so that they could take timely action to avoid the collision (NTSB, 1993b)

… the probable cause of the ramming of the Mont Fort by the Maersk Neptune was the failure of the pilot to use the information concerning the radar distance to the anchored vessel provided by the master and the use of excessive speed while approaching his intended anchoring location (NTSB, 1988a).

Merely providing more equipment will not prevent accidents. Improved training and education can help prevent maritime accidents and casualties, and many agencies and companies are looking to simulation as one vehicle for improving mariner competency.

To make effective use of simulation it is necessary to assess both its benefits and limitations. This knowledge can then be used to develop a technical basis for informed national and international decision making about the appropriate role for simulation in the professional development and qualification of mariners.


Understanding the mariners who form the trainee population—their professional development needs and how these needs are met—is fundamental to determining the suitability of marine simulation for professional development and licensing.

The seagoing workforce is traditionally divided into three broad groups—deck, engine, and steward. Deck personnel, who are the focus of this report, can be divided loosely into two groups—licensed and unlicensed. The licensed

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