GMDSS printed paper. required to save and store for x amount of time?

Hello

Our GMDSS suite includes an Inmarsat C-Term, printing to the Furuno PP-510. For those familiar, this alarm goes off all of the time because the ocean ranges are massive, and miles of paper is needlessly printed. When the printer is secured, that is a violation of GMDSS and a different set of alarms begin to sound. By the end of every watch, we’ve got a stack of paper with (mostly) useless information

Anyway, I got my hand slapped pretty good for taking some of that paper and throwing it in the recycling bin. Apparently, its a GMDSS requirement to save that paper. Can anyone confirm this to be true? If so, can you send me a reference?

Thank you for your time

According to Inmarsat themselves, you are required to keep the printed copy for as long as the message remains in effect or your voyage is complete. I’m not aware of any regulation concerning keeping printed copies.

http://www.inmarsat.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Inmarsat_SafetyNet_Users_Handbook.pdf

Not sure of any specific requirement but one thing I’ve done is taken a spare cardboard reel and roll the printed stuff onto it. Once it’s full I reload it in the printer and print on the back side of the paper. Once it’s been printed on both sides I’ll put the last date in permanent marker on the outside and tape the roll. We would save them for a month or so until we had another roll and then pitch the old ones. By keeping it rolled up it helped keep it from just becoming a big heap of paper at the end of the watch.

Firstly you should check your EGC settings as well as what navarea you are transiting. That will greatly cut down on your message volume. You can also change the message options so things like weather forecasts aren’t printed when received, but weather reports are always useful so I wouldn’t recommend this. Certain messages like SAR alerts, hurricane warnings, ice warnings, and tsunami warnings cannot be turned off for good reason. With a Furuno printer you can also disengage the printer spool so it prints but doesn’t feed the paper.

As for saving the print outs. I’ve always kept the printed weather reports until the voyage is over and it is sure that no heavy weather was encountered which would require a report. All navigation warnings are immediately noted on the charts and put in a conspicuous area so the mates take notice. Beyond that I have an archive locker that is already drowning in paper so just like how the charts get erased, the print outs get the boot.

That path, from the where the forecast is tranmitted to the pertinent information getting posted in the wheelhoure should be kept open and working correctly whenever the ship is at sea. You don’t want to learn there there is bad weather about and then have to scramble to troubleshoot your GMDSS equipment. Could be on the wrong navarea, wrong ocean region, correct info not selected etc. If the correct forecast is always posted shortly after it’s recieved it’s easy to check that that path is open and working.

We keep a chartlet of the appropriate area posted so the weather forecast can be easily interpreted.

It’s like heading information. We have a routine for checking and recording gyro/mag heading info. We don’t wait for the gyro to go out and then try to figure it out.

Last ship I was on, we turned off all EGC printing that we could. We had relatively high-speed internet onboard, so weather came by way of a routing service and program. If that went out and we needed it, we would just start printing the reports again.

[QUOTE=flyboy14295;187526]Last ship I was on, we turned off all EGC printing that we could. We had relatively high-speed internet onboard, so weather came by way of a routing service and program. If that went out and we needed it, we would just start printing the reports again.[/QUOTE]

Don’t know what your situation is but the wx programs I’ve seen use email to update, internet access is not required. The files that update the program are about 300 kbs or so.

As far as not using the SAFETYNET text forecasts, the two (text forecast and the wx routing program) are not equivalent, the routing program is good for route planning and for understanding the big wx picture, similar to having the TV weatherman explain the weather. The text is good for posting in the wheelhouse so the mate on watch knows what to expect. Similar to getting the latest forecast on the phone.

Relying on the computer alone has technical issues (timing for one) as well as crew management considerations (posted text forecast are more accessable to junior officers and crew).

[QUOTE=Kennebec Captain;187571]Don’t know what your situation is but the wx programs I’ve seen use email to update, internet access is not required. The files that update the program are about 300 kbs or so.

As far as not using the SAFETYNET text forecasts, the two (text forecast and the wx routing program) are not equivalent, the routing program is good for route planning and for understanding the big wx picture, similar to having the TV weatherman explain the weather. The text is good for posting in the wheelhouse so the mate on watch knows what to expect. Similar to getting the latest forecast on the phone.

Relying on the computer alone has technical issues (timing for one) as well as crew management considerations (posted text forecast are more accessable to junior officers and crew).[/QUOTE]

The program we were using gave updated worldwide weather info to include sea, swell, wind, and everything else. Updated every 4 hours.

In terms of accesibility, I was the Third Mate, all officers knew how to use the program. I found it quite efficient, and accurate to what I was looking at outside.

[QUOTE=flyboy14295;187796]The program we were using gave updated worldwide weather info to include sea, swell, wind, and everything else. Updated every 4 hours.

In terms of accesibility, I was the Third Mate, all officers knew how to use the program. I found it quite efficient, and accurate to what I was looking at outside.[/QUOTE]

Yes, I use a weather/routing program, I sometimes rely upon it heavily. If the weather is complex, for example sailing Great Circle through the Bering Sea in winter, I always use it for ETA, minimum track time, expected vessel motion etc.

I invest a lot of time into it, sometimes reviewing the situation several times a day. It is the fastest, most convenient way to get an understanding of the weather situation.

By contrast using the SAFETYNET text forecast alone it is really not possible to understand the situation. But they were never intended to be used that way, Back in the day that was what the Radio FAX was used for. But having a current WX FAX would never have been considered a substitute for the text.

Here is the offshore forecast for my area today.

429 AM EDT TUE JUL 26 2016

.SYNOPSIS FOR NEW ENGLAND WATERS…A WARM FRONT OVER THE FAR E
WATERS WILL LIFT NE OF THE AREA TODAY AS A LOW PRES TROUGH PASSES
E ACROSS THE REGION. A WEAK COLD FRONT WILL PASS SE ACROSS THE
WATERS THIS AFTERNOON INTO WED. ANOTHER WEAK COLD FRONT WILL
APPROACH FROM THE NW WED NIGHT AND THU…MOVE OFFSHORE THU
NIGHT…THEN BECOME NEARLY STATIONARY ACROSS THE AREA FRI INTO
SAT. DEVELOPING LOW PRES ALONG THE FRONT WILL MOVE E OFF THE MID
ATLC COAST NEAR CAPE MAY LATE FRI NIGHT INTO EARLY SAT AND PASS E
THROUGH THE SRN WATERS LATER SAT AND SAT NIGHT.

I would print this out and read it while looking at the weather progam, (sometimes they don’t match).

Finally, for just a simple summary, this…

TODAY
W TO SW WINDS 5 TO 15 KT. SEAS 2 TO 4 FT. SCATTERED
SHOWERS AND TSTMS. AREAS OF FOG WITH VSBY 1 NM OR LESS.

TONIGHT
W TO NW WINDS 5 TO 15 KT…BECOMING N TO NW. SEAS 1 TO 3 FT.

This should be posted and kept current for quick and easy access.

One of the issues with the routing programs is that they are based on the same data as SAFETYNET. There is a several hour delay between the two paths. Like ARPA it doesn’t matter if the targets are far away but if the ship is passing close to a system getting the lastest as soon as possible can be important, especialy in fast changing situations.

Ok, a sports analogy.

This:

TODAY
W TO SW WINDS 5 TO 15 KT. SEAS 2 TO 4 FT. SCATTERED
SHOWERS AND TSTMS. AREAS OF FOG WITH VSBY 1 NM OR LESS.

TONIGHT
W TO NW WINDS 5 TO 15 KT…BECOMING N TO NW. SEAS 1 TO 3 FT.

Is analogous to a sports score.

Angles 6 Royals 2

Just the basics.

Or maybe it’s more like the headline, a little more info:

Pujols drives in 4, Angels beat Royals 6-2

Now this:

429 AM EDT TUE JUL 26 2016

.SYNOPSIS FOR NEW ENGLAND WATERS…A WARM FRONT OVER THE FAR E
WATERS WILL LIFT NE OF THE AREA TODAY AS A LOW PRES TROUGH PASSES
E ACROSS THE REGION. A WEAK COLD FRONT WILL PASS SE ACROSS THE
WATERS THIS AFTERNOON INTO WED. ANOTHER WEAK COLD FRONT WILL
APPROACH FROM THE NW WED NIGHT AND THU…MOVE OFFSHORE THU
NIGHT…THEN BECOME NEARLY STATIONARY ACROSS THE AREA FRI INTO
SAT. DEVELOPING LOW PRES ALONG THE FRONT WILL MOVE E OFF THE MID
ATLC COAST NEAR CAPE MAY LATE FRI NIGHT INTO EARLY SAT AND PASS E
THROUGH THE SRN WATERS LATER SAT AND SAT NIGHT.

is like reading the article:

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Albert Pujols, even at 36 years old, is still an RBI machine for the Los Angeles Angels.

Pujols drove in four runs, Hector Santiago won his fifth consecutive start and the Angels beat the Kansas City Royals 6-2 on Monday night.

Pujols drove in two with a bases-loaded single during a four-run first, then added RBI singles in the seventh and ninth innings. He leads the majors with 26 RBI in July, including 16 in his past eight games, and he has 76 this season despite a .254 average.

Part of that is from hitting behind Mike Trout, Yunel Escobar and Kole Calhoun, all of whom entered Monday ranked among the top 40 major leaguers in on-base percentage.

So,[B][U] using the weather routing program is like watching the game highlights on the evening sports news[/U][/B]. It’s going to give the viewer a good understanding of the game but it requires giving full attention to the TV (computer) for some period of time and what has been learned (a deeper understanding of the situation) can not be easily communicated.

By contrast just the score is easy to understand and communicate. Saying that anyone that wants to know the score, just this: “Angels beat Royals 6-2”, can watch the highlights, is missing an important point, they are not equivalent. Sometimes all that is needed is just the score.

Not to mention that the score is going to come out before the evening news, with the weather sometimes that doesn’t matter, sometimes it does.