Captain Don Cockrill MBE CMMar FNI - Secretary General, UK Maritime Pilots Association

Don’s seafaring adventures began in 1973 as a cadet with Canadian Pacific (CP Ships) from where having progressed to master specialising in petro-chemicals he spent a brief period with Stolt-Neilson before joining the Port of London Authority as a pilot in 1991 where he still works as one of the senior pilots.

Concurrently throughout almost all of that period he has been involved one way or another in the administration and work of the United Kingdom Maritime Pilots’ Association most recently as its chairman for 5 years until November 2015. He is now engaged by the UKMPA in the role of Secretary General. For voluntary services to Maritime Pilotage and the Port Industry Don was awarded an MBE in the 2017 New Years Honours.

He is passionate about the promotion of safety issues and the maintenance of the highest professional standards. His significant lifelong experience and associated expertise in maritime operations within the ports and shipping industries is widely sought after. In 2017 he was one of the first recipients of the Chartered Master Mariners (CMMar) award.



Maritime Situational Awareness - Determination, Perception and Integrity

“Situational Awareness” is a term commonly used in many fields especially those associated with Maritime industries and is frequently (erroneously) considered as a “contributory factor” or even a “root cause” underlying major and minor collisions, allisions and other undesirable events in investigation reports. Yet, what is Situational Awareness?

What do those who quote it, apparently with all the background understanding required, actually mean by it?

Does the situational awareness experienced by an individual reflect that experienced by another in the same location?  Some high-profile recent accidents have revealed some surprising aspects of the influences on what we perceive versus what is actually happening. Additionally, at any given moment is a navigator actually where he/she thinks they are?

This presentation will look at some of the lesser known factors that affect the positional accuracy of a navigator’s geographical determination when using common electronic navigational aids and discuss influences on decisions made under navigational circumstances.