The arrival of a new harbor pilot inevitably creates tension in a warship. Will the pilot be cooperative and willing to teach, or determined to take total charge regardless of the legal implications or possible insult given? Equally, is the ship’s commanding officer (CO) willing to flex to different pilot personalities? I spoke to Captain Bill Bartsch, the senior pilot in the port of San Diego, who shared his insights and observations of Navy ships and COs in restricted waters.
Charting a Course - Operating With a Pilot in the Channel
By Captain Kevin Eyer, U.S. Navy (Retired)