Failure to highlight a defective rate of turn indicator at the MPX.
What the reporter told us:
The ship’s digital rate of turn indicator at the bridge front was lagging considerably behind the ship’s true rate of turn. Once the ordered rate of turn had been held steady for a period, the digital rate of turn indicator would then catch up and show the correct rate of turn. However, the rate of turn indicator at the helmsman’s position showed the correct rate of turn throughout.
The ship’s own bridge team were aware that the digital rate of turn indicator was lagging but it was not highlighted at the time of the MPX. The amount it lagged even appeared to surprise the crew when the ship started the first major turn.
On a positive note, when the helmsman was ordered to put the ordered rate of turn on immediately – whilst it was not showing on the bridge front rate of turn indicator – the Master was quick to point out that the helmsman’s RoT indicator was working correctly and the required rate of turn was already on.
At the debriefing after the ship was berthed, the Staff Captain raised the topic that at future MPX’s, the bridge team must highlight that the digital RoT indicator was experiencing significant lag, but that the helmsman’s indicator was functioning correctly.
Failure to highlight the defective rate of turn indicator not only caused the pilot a brief period of consternation but also raised the question whether there were any other deficiencies which had not been mentioned? Suspicions like that could trigger the pilot to request a Port State inspection. Malfunctions do occur at times, but they must be brought to the attention of the pilot at the MPX and repairs must be arranged as soon as possible.