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Practical standards of engineering watch in port - guideline for ships

The Chief Engineer shall designate an engineer and an engine rating to carry out the watchkeeping in port and the onboard duty after consultation with the Master.
The Chief Engineer shall deploy personnel for machinery operation in port preparing for an emergency. If the vessel is at anchor, the Chief Engineer shall ensure a watch order similar to that at sea as required

The Chief Engineer must not leave the vessel in port until he transfers his duties and gives necessary instructions to the First Engineer or other engineer with equivalent ability. However, during cargo operation on tankers (include LPG and LNG carriers), either the Chief Engineer or the First Engineer must be on board in preparation for the emergency of the vessel.

The Chief Engineer shall ensure necessary personnel to deal with troubles of cargo work equipment of the vessel during cargo handling operation to reduce the delay time.

The Chief Engineer may arrange a manned watch system in port during loading and discharging or as required.

Operational guidance for engineering watch in port

The person designated by the Chief Engineer as Engineering watch shall carry out his duty according to the following regulations:

Company Rules for Seafarers

International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978 (STCW 1978 AS AMENDED IN 1995)

(a ) Section A-VIII/2 part 3-2, Principles to be observed in keeping an Engineering Watch

(b ) Section A-VIII/2 part 4-2, Taking over the engineering watch

(c ) Section A-VIII/2 part 4-4, Performing the engineering watch

International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from ships (MARPOL-73/78)


Chief Engineer's role in Engine watchkeeping

The Chief Engineer shall command and supervise the operation of machinery; in person; in the following cases at minimum

When entering and leaving port and shifting in a port.

When navigating a narrow fairway.

When it is deemed necessary to do so for the operation of machinery.

As instructed by Master, such as while in heavy density of traffic, restricted visibility, confined waters, heavy weather etc.


Instructions to the Engineer of the Watch

The Engineer of the watch shall not be absent from the engine room during his watch.

The Engineer of the watch shall observe the following items during his watch.

a) He shall arrange things so that he can react immediately to notices and instructions from the bridge.

b) He shall adhere to the specified operational standards of machinery and may not change such standards unnecessarily without permission of the Chief Engineer.

c) He shall appraise operational conditions and make efforts to be prepared to take emergency measures.

d) He shall make frequent inspection rounds as appropriate in Engine room, paying attention to such abnormal conditions of the machinery, difficult to detect from the engine control room, as leaks, sound, vibrations & heating and smells thereby to prevent accidents.

e) He shall appraise the present quantities of fuel oils, lubricating oils and feed water.

Bearing in mind the present condition of bilge in the engine room, he shall follow the Chief Engineer's instructions as to its disposal.

f) Other things instructed by the Chief Engineer.

The Engineer of the watch shall take proper measures immediately in the following cases and report to the Chief Engineer without delay.

1. When he is informed from the bridge of the schedule (Time) of the engine to be placed on stand-by or to be used.

2. When he has found abnormal conditions of machinery or is in doubt.

3. When he has received emergency orders or instructions.

4. When it is deemed necessary in situations other than those as specified in the previous items.


The Engineer of the watch shall notify the Officer of the watch in following cases:

When such a failure of machinery which may affect navigation has occurred

In other cases when it is deemed necessary.





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