Just to name a few. The lookout should inform the officer on watch when he observes any of the following:
- Any kind of floating object
- Navigation mark or lights
- Any type of distress signal from other ships or ports
- Ice, irrespective of size or form
- Any type of ship irrespective of its size
- Sandbags or prominent navigational features
- Problem with any of the ship’s navigation systems, including navigational lights
- Any kind of hazards or derelicts that can be dangerous to the ship’s navigation
The main duties of a lookout are:
To give utmost attention through sight, hearing, and any other means in order to assess any change in the operating environment.
Continuously and carefully scanning the horizon by the step-by-step method, also scanning aft quarters.
Detecting and reporting on ships, shipwrecks, debris, shipwrecked person, and other navigational hazards
Reporting on possibilities of collision, stranding, and other dangers to navigation
The job of lookout is mostly carried out by Able Seaman (AB) or Ordinary seaman (OS) of the ship. However, lookout duties cannot be shared with other works.Today, the job of a lookout is of utmost importance on ships plying in piracy affected areas.
And you learn that people, also all of the 83 pages of the training manual for lookouts, who even never saw the sea in one or two minutes? I must say you are one very smart cookie as are your junior sailor pupils.