designated. The advancement of fishing activity further offshore also leads to the restriction of the navigable space available to shipping. Finally, the present situation is further compounded by a shortage of officers. The current and future availability of senior officers is also a cause for concern. Another aspect to be noted is casualty statistics in shipping. Of the total number of accidents in 2013, 75% took place in ten world regions, of which nearly 46% were related to European waters. e-Navigation has a crucial role to play in mitigating risk, particularly in collision and grounding accidents near the shore.
e-Navigation services as risk control options
Simulation trials were conducted to test the efficacy of futuristic e-Navigation solutions as risk control options. Two pertinent services related to the ship-port interface – ‘shore based route suggestion’ and ‘display of intended route’ – were tested in simulation trials and are presented here exemplarily. Five different scenarios were designed and tested twice over the course of four consecutive days. At any one time, two bridge teams on simulation bridges participated in the simulation runs. The bridges were manned by experienced pilots, as well as mariners, and shore based support was provided by personnel from the Humber VTS, a monitoring and regulation service for the River Humber based in England. The bridge teams changed after two days participating in all five scenarios. In a scenario pertaining to the approach to the River Humber, the VTS operator said that prior to the establishment of the Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS), vessels would approach from all directions like ‘bees to a honey pot’ and would depart ‘like a starburst’. The VTS operator further went on to note that the functionality that enables them to see the intended route of vessels was extremely valuable to them as, based upon the route, they could suggest a suitable approach to the TSS if required. The Humber personnel added that they would miss the functionality upon their return to England. A very similar response was received from Danish pilots referring to their area of operation.