CRESCENT PILOTS PROTECT THE THINGS THAT MATTER MOST.
STATE SINCE 1908
The Crescent River Port Pilots' Association is commissioned by the State to provide Louisiana’s offering of safe commerce and tourism. The extraordinary business of the river includes imports and exports from 90 different nations making Louisiana’s port system the busiest port complex in the world. We take command on the Lower Mississippi as the only American on board foreign ships to safely navigate a 105 mile stretch of the Mighty Mississippi.
We take command of ships traveling from 90 different countries around the world, ships with crews that often speak no English. Language barriers are common and our training prepares us for this. Immediately upon boarding we quickly assess the skills and limitations of each crew and act accordingly. We must remain calm and communicate with authority. In turn crews sense they can trust us to safely navigate their ships.
WE MITIGATE EXTRAORDINARY RISKS
Piloting is regarded as one of the most dangerous jobs in the world due to the potential for catastrophic damage that surrounds it, as well as, the sensitive nature of the river, the ships, and the cargo. We must perform at the highest level during each and every shift, committing 100% of focus, expertise, and skill in order to keep Louisiana’s environment, ecosystems, and economy of the river safe.
Safety is of the utmost importance. The ships we navigate have extraordinary power and the Mighty Mississippi River is quite unpredictable. The expertise and exceptional navigational skills of pilots are pivotal in the success of Louisiana's port system.
SET OF SKILLS REQUIRED.
Navigating a ship upon an ocean requires a different set of skills and experience than piloting in the confined and congested waterway of the Lower Mississippi. This geographical location known for its ferociousness increases the workload on the bridge of a ship because the time between error and consequence are reduced to very short intervals.
In Louisiana’s ports and others around the world margins of error are small and activity is intense, therefore each utilize a river pilot’s ability and extensive experience. This provides protection for the people of the state, the ship, cargo, crew and the local ecosystems.
EDUCATION AND LOCAL EXPERIENCE
Crescent Pilots prepare for 8-12 years before being commissioned and permitted to shoulder the responsibility for a ship, its cargo, and crew. Qualified men and women receive a Master Unlimited License issued by Coast Guard for any gross tonnage, a 1st class pilot license for a particular section of the river, and maintain life-long continuing education. Equally demanded is experience and each year our expertise compounds as we conquer the nearly impossible. Last year alone Crescent Pilots navigated miles in excess of a million to reach 110,000 hours on the bridge of a ship accomplishing 20,000 ship movements.
A WORLD THAT NEVER SHUTS DOWN
Pilots operate in a world that never shuts down making their lives quite different than most others. We take greater risk than most to do our job, our schedules inevitably take a toll on our health, and families must make never ending adjustments to accommodate our schedules. It goes without saying, the life of a Crescent Pilot is unpredictable making constant change our normal way of life. Yet a sense of vigor permeates and our commitment to keep you safe is unwavering.