MarineSafety Initiates Tug-Barge Simulator Training Course
After many months of development work, MarineSafety International conducted its first training course for tugboat skippers recently in its ship simulator facility at La Guardia Airport in New York City. Mobil Oil captains Craig Kinney, Doug Ruhl, and John Flynn participated in the rigorous three-day course aimed at providing them with accelerated experience in pushing and maneuvering a large, heavily loaded barge in various situations. All three skippers rated the course as being very worthwhile. The trainees used a 7,000-bhp, twin-screw tug to manage a barge 400 feet long and 99 feet wide under a variety of wind, current, and visibility conditions. The tug-barge combination was worked in different rivers and harbors experiencing strong currents and winds, and interaction with other traffic. The trainees practiced decision-making under stress as they faced unexpected failures and emergency situations on the final day of the course.
The response of the tug and barge to the skippers' engine and steering controls and to external conditions is accurately simulated in a computer. The tug-barge computer response model was developed for MarineSafety by Tracor-Hydronau tics of Laurel, Md. Crowley Maritime of San Francisco provided sea trial and operational data for the tug and barge.
Present exercises include operation of the tug in the notch and on the hip. Various types of towing exercises are under development. MarineSafety plans to offer the three-day, three-person simulator course monthly throughout the year.
For further information on this tug-barge course and on other MarineSafety simulator training,