• Damage control team - A group of crew members trained for fighting flooding in the vessel

  • Datum .1 - The most probable position of a search target at a given time

  • Datum .2 - The plane of reference to which all data as to the depth on charts are referenced

  • Derelict - Vessel still afloat, abandoned at sea

  • Destination - Port for which a vessel is bound

  • Disabled - A vessel damaged or impaired in such a manner as to be incapable of proceeding on its voyage

  • Disembark (to) - To go from a vessel

  • Distress alert (GMDSS) - A radio signal from a distressed vessel automatically directed to an MRCC giving position, identification, course and speed of the vessel as well as the nature of distress

  • Distress/ Here - the verbal exchange of information on radio from ship to shore Urgency traffic and/or ship to ship / aircraft about a distress / urgency situation as defined in the relevant ITU Radio Regulations

  • Draught (or draft) - Depth in water at which a vessel floats

  • Dragging (of anchor) - Moving of an anchor over the sea bottom involuntarily because it is no longer preventing the movement of the vessel

  • Dredging (of anchor) - Moving of an anchor over the sea bottom to control the movement of the vessel

  • Drifting - Being driven along by the wind, tide or current

  • Drop back (to) - To increase the distance from the vessel ahead by reducing one's own speed

  • DSC - Digital Selective Calling (in the GMDSS system)

  • Embark (to) - To go aboard a vessel

  • EPIRB - Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon

  • Escape route - A clearly marked way in the vessel which has to be followed in case of an emergency

  • Escort - Attending a vessel to be available in case of need, e.g. ice-breaker, tug, etc.

  • ETA - Estimated Time of Arrival

  • ETD - Estimated Time of Departure

  • Fathom - A measure of 6 feet

  • Fire patrol - A member of the watch going around the vessel at certain intervals so that an outbreak of fire may be promptly detected; mandatory in vessels carrying more than 36 passengers

  • Flooding - Major uncontrolled flow of seawater into the vessel

  • Fire monitor - Fixed foam/powder/water cannon shooting fire-extinguishing agents on tank deck, manifold etc.

  • Foul (of anchor) - Anchor has its own cable twisted around it or has fouled an obstruction

  • Foul (of propeller) - A line, wire, net, etc., is wound round the propeller

  • Full speed - Highest possible speed of a vessel

  • Fumes - Often harmful gas produced by fires, chemicals, fuel, etc.

  • General emergency alarm - A sound signal of seven short blasts and one prolonged blast given with the vessel’s sound system

  • Give way - To keep out of the way of another vessel

  • GMDSS - Global Maritime Distress and Safety System

  • (D) GPS - (Differential) Global (satellite) Positioning System

  • Half cardinal points - The four main points lying between the cardinal points: north east, south east, south west and north west

  • Hampered vessel - A vessel restricted by her ability to manoeuvre by the nature of her work

  • Hatchrails - Ropes supported by stanchions around an open hatch to prevent persons from falling into a hold

  • Heading - The horizontal direction of the vessel's bows at a given moment measured in degrees clockwise from north

  • Hoist Here - a cable used by helicopters for lifting or lowering persons in a pick-up operation

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