Closely linked to monitoring is the concept of situational awareness .This is the ability to know where the ship is in relation to the fairway, land and danger to navigation and the proximity of the other traffic. This awareness is most easily acquired by looking outside and comparing what is seen with the chart or the radar.
It is often felt particularly by in experienced officer that the radar picture gives the best situational awareness and that the radar can be compared with the chat without looking outside. The danger with this practice is that the radar picture may be disoriented. The Ranger scale mistaken and small targets undetermined. Situational awareness from which the progress of The vessel can be assessed required 3 monitoring activities.
- Examination of the chart
- Recognition of the conspicuous light or mark my lookout and conducting a personal visible identification.
- Verification of distance and collision risk by monitoring radar.