Category: decision making

Guns Blazing; The War of 1812 and the Jersey Shore

In 2014 our friends at Navesink Maritime Heritage Association organized an event that commemorated New Jersey’s 350th anniversary. Martin & Ottaway and a number of maritime organizations quickly jumped in as event sponsors and their sponsorship allowed the replica vessel Onrust to visit the Navesink River where New Jersey was originally settled. For 2019 Navesink… Read more »

Books That Messed with My Head (2018 Update)

Note: I posed a question at the bottom of the original blog and in August 2016 added two book to the bottom of the list in response. In 2018 added two more books. Books are fun, but very occasionally I have encountered books that have actually changed my understanding of humanity and the world. Only a very small number… Read more »

The King and His Consultant; A Fairy Tale

I wrote this story many years ago, back when .PDF readers were still very confusing to use and cell phone systems were analog. It deals with what, today, I call “hyperventilation control,” a timely subject, I would say. I hope our clients, colleagues, associates, friends, and family will enjoy it as a heartfelt Martin & Ottaway holiday present. Happy… Read more »

How Not To Be Ignorant About The World

Ignorance is very pervasive and fighting ignorant behavior can be very exhausting. Jonathan Swift is believed to have said that you cannot reason someone out of something they were not first reasoned into. If that statement is true, and it certainly contains a lot of truth as far as I can see, it means that… Read more »

USS Somerset, The Real Lesson of 9/11

On March 1, 2014 the USS Somerset (LPD-25) will be commissioned in Philadelphia. The Somerset is the third and final San Antonio Class vessel named after 9/11 locations. The other two vessels of the same class that preceded the USS Somerset are the USS New York and the USS Arlington.  The names of the earlier… Read more »

Getting Lost Is No Big Deal. Not Knowing That You Are Lost Can Kill You

Accident analysis is a strange and complex task. Often blame is considered to be the motivator for an accident analysis, but the most interesting and useful purpose of an accident analysis is to tease the universally useful gems out of the huge pile of information that tends to get generated during an accident analysis. I… Read more »

Costa Concordia and QESTH

A while ago Wayne Thomas forwarded the “Costa Concordia Report on the Safety Technical Investigation” to everybody in the office and only just now did I have a chance to read it. While the report is not dated or specifically identified as “final” it appears this is an English language version of the last word… Read more »

Disaster? DO The OODA Loop

A disaster like the Costa Concordia opens a wide variety of investigations and undoubtedly many people are very busy in analyzing what caused the vessel to strike the reef and to capsize, but striking reefs and capsizing actually is nothing new and, on a technical level, actually is pretty well understood. What is much more… Read more »

The Thrill Of The Cutting Edge

Corporate longevity might imply tradition, but actually, and especially in the maritime industry, longevity is directly related to staying on the cutting edge and being involved in the next big thing. On March 5 and 6, 2013 Martin & Ottaway will be a minor sponsor of the Marine Log 2013 Offshore Alternatives Conference at the… Read more »

Women and Children First, Part Two

Our first blog on “Women and Children First” elicited a fair amount of comment on various discussion sites. A major part of the discussion centered on the Birkenhead disaster. The Birkenhead disaster is considered to be the first application, or even the invention, of the “Women and Children First” concept. Wikipedia provides a fair amount… Read more »