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Is C&RT's Boat/Location Logging System Fit for Purpose?


Tony Dunkley
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Have I mentioned Section 8, CC regs or C&RT's lack of satisfaction . . . no, I don't think so. Maybe you should join MtB in re-reading the OP.

 

From the way you criticise the people offering ideas and thoughts supporting you, I don't understand why you are posting here.

 

Best of luck with your court case all the same. I think however, you're gonna get made mincemeat of with your combative attitude and muddled thinking.

 

MtB

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It doesn't `keep no history` . . . it amends previously recorded information. Really useful if, for instance, you want show that a boat is still at the same location as when last sighted.

So it is emending the records as to where your registered home mooring was historically, is that what you are saying? If that is true it is a poor computer system, but why does that course the customer an issue. I don't see what the boats location has to do with this, the logging of boat movement is a different thing, and presumably a different computer system.

 

So is the issue with boat movement logging, or the records about home mooring location? You start the original post with

 

 

Well, it would seem not, having recently produced a printout showing my boat's current Home Mooring as the same location since 2003.

which makes me thing the latter, but you follow up posts tend to suggest the former.

Edited by john6767
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With the system as described - hypothetically -

 

If many years ago I had a mooring at Barton-In-Fabis, which was a little difficult to access due to health issues and I subsequently took a C&RT mooring at Home Lock, the 'computer' would show that my Home Mooring was still at "BIF".

 

If I spent considerable time at my 'new' Home Mooring at Holme Lock, C&RT would register me as being away from my Home Mooring (at BIF), the C&RT enforcement team would take action based on the fact that they didnt know I was actually paying for a C&RT mooring at Holme Lock.

 

Hmmmmm - A 'joined-up' computer system would certainly help in such circumstances.

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To methe OP's point did not seem to be about boat tracking, but about the records as to where your home mooring is, and that if you update the home mooring location the system keeps no history as to where the previous home mooring was and the dates at that mooring and the date the new mooring was taken up. If I am reading that correctly then the does sound rather poor but I don't understand why that would be an issue to a customer. What am I missing?

Another chance to stick the boot into CRT?

Tony...I've got to ask...are you a genuine victim...or are you trying to score points over CRT?

 

What do you think? rolleyes.gif

With the system as described - hypothetically -

 

If many years ago I had a mooring at Barton-In-Fabis, which was a little difficult to access due to health issues and I subsequently took a C&RT mooring at Home Lock, the 'computer' would show that my Home Mooring was still at "BIF".

 

If I spent considerable time at my 'new' Home Mooring at Holme Lock, C&RT would register me as being away from my Home Mooring (at BIF), the C&RT enforcement team would take action based on the fact that they didnt know I was actually paying for a C&RT mooring at Holme Lock.

 

Hmmmmm - A 'joined-up' computer system would certainly help in such circumstances.

 

Not really as your "new" home mooring would be on the long term mooring site rather than the visitor moorings. It wouldnt even flag up with the enforcement team as a problem!!

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Well, it would seem not, having recently produced a printout showing my boat's current Home Mooring as the same location since 2003.

Not only is this some six years before I bought the boat, but it also omits the period up to the end of September 2011 when I was renting a Long Term Mooring from BW/C&RT at Holme Lock on the Trent. When questioned about this C&RT's local Enforcement superstar, Stuart Garner said . ." Oh it's that `thing` with our system". He obligingly went on to explain that when a new location for a boat is being entered how their system can erase the previous locations and re-enter them as the same as the new location.

Keen to find out more I contacted a specialist IT company and from their appraisal of what had been said, their advice was to ask C&RT the following :-

 

Since being made aware of the problems with your computer system by Stuart Garner during a telephone call on 14 July 2014, I have sought advice from a specialist IT company experienced in providing software systems for process management and record keeping for such as Government Departments and Police.

They have indicated that the constant retrospective Location Record changes at the time of new entries against Customer or Contract numbers may well be due to the lack of a secure and valid audit trail, rendering the system unfit for purpose.
Obviously more information is needed for full assessment of your system and the implications for boat owners, and C&RT, of your use of it. I am unsure whether we should ask for this information as an FOI Request or an SAR. Please advise.
Signed A.K.Dunkley.
Unsurprisingly there is, as yet, no reply.

 

 

Am I correct in reading the OP, as saying that all previous sightings of a particular boat are automatically changed to its current location.

If so then, then no boat actually moves according to C&RT's data logging system.

 

Bod

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Am I correct in reading the OP, as saying that all previous sightings of a particular boat are automatically changed to its current location.

If so then, then no boat actually moves according to C&RT's data logging system.

 

Bod

Not sure but to me a very good point has been made that once a boat moves that is not recorded until the next time it is logged. The problem with this is that for example boat could be logged at point A on day 1 then move to point B for 14 days (and not be logged) and return to point A again and be logged on its 10th day the system would show the boat had been there for 25 days where in fact it had only been there for a total of 11 days

Edited by cotswoldsman
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Not really as your "new" home mooring would be on the long term mooring site rather than the visitor moorings. It wouldnt even flag up with the enforcement team as a problem!!

 

But C&RT have accepted he is not on the visitor moorings, and have even sent him a map of the lock with the area classed as 'the lock' marked in Red - they have acknowledged he is outside the 'red line'.

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Not sure but to me a very good point has been made that once a boat moves that is not recorded until the next time it is logged. The problem with this is that for example boat could be logged at point A on day 1 then move to point B for 14 days (and not be logged) and return to point A again and be logged on its 10th day the system would show the boat had been there for 25 days where in fact it had only been there for a total of 11 days

That's not a fault in the system, though, surely? CRT can only cover so much of e system, and they'd have this problem whether they used snazzy computer systems or sheets of paper, if they're only inspecting at intervals.

 

Unless every boat gets fitted with a GPS tracker, I can't see how this problem can be resolved.

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That's not a fault in the system, though, surely? CRT can only cover so much of e system, and they'd have this problem whether they used snazzy computer systems or sheets of paper, if they're only inspecting at intervals.

 

Unless every boat gets fitted with a GPS tracker, I can't see how this problem can be resolved.

I am not an IT person so do not know the answer but just pointing out how a boat could be logged as over staying when in fact it has not overstayed

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Am I correct in reading the OP, as saying that all previous sightings of a particular boat are automatically changed to its current location.

If so then, then no boat actually moves according to C&RT's data logging system.

 

Bod

Yes you are correct, and thank you for the post. I was beginning to despair of anyone actually reading and understanding what I said in the OP.

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Yes you are correct, and thank you for the post. I was beginning to despair of anyone actually reading and understanding what I said in the OP.

Sorry Tony I am being very thick here, nothing new some will say!! When I was in Leeds office in 2012 renewing my licence the guy showed me on his computer all the places I had been logged the previous 18 months and yes there were some long gaps the longest being about 3 months
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Yes you are correct, and thank you for the post. I was beginning to despair of anyone actually reading and understanding what I said in the OP.

 

I did read your OP, but I had to do it several times becasue it was impossible for me to understand what "a printout showing my boat's current Home Mooring as the same location since 2003." actaully referred to.

 

What, exactly, does it refer to?

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A funny situation was reported by a boater in London (so this should be treated as hearsay) which makes me curious about how their system works.

 

They were logged in one spot and five months later they were logged nearby and they were then placed in the enforcement process. The boater was apparently told that because their boat wasn't sighted elsewhere on the system in between the two sightings the assumption was that they were in the same place for 5 months.

 

If this report is correct that's some funny database logic going on there.

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Having read your original post, in my view it's impossible to say whether the system you describe is fit for purpose.

 

I'm not even clear what the fault is that you are trying to describe. You say that the printout shows the boat's current Home Mooring as the same location since 2003.

 

If the boat's current Home Mooring is, for instance, Holme Lock, are you saying that the printout shows some other place and that's wrong, or are you saying that the printout showed that in 2003 the boat's Home Mooring was, for example, Holme Lock and that that's wrong. Or are you saying the printout showed a series of Home Moorings since 2003 and they all show the same location, e.g. Holme Lock and that that's wrong? Or do you mean somthing else?

 

Even if we can clear up what you mean, we can't simply jump to the conclusion that because the printout doesn't match your expectation, that the system is wrong, not fit for purpose or whatever.

 

It could be that the system isn't doing what it was designed to do, or it could be that the system is printing out exactly what it was designed to do, but that some incorrect data has been entered, or that the query which generated the printout wasn't formatted correctly..... or it could be that what the sytem was designed to do, isn't what you're expecting it to do. Any or all of those things or quite a few others can lead you to point to a printout and say; "That's wrong".

 

 

By way of anecdote, I had a problem with mail from CRT to my home address continually getting lost in the post. Getting to the bottom of the problem, it appeared that at some point between me giving them my change of address on a handwritten form, it was entered into a spreadsheet. The particular record within the spreadsheet in which the postcode was entered was set to format it as text, unless it was purely numeric in which case it was a saved as a number. I happen to have a non-UK postcode which is a 5 digit numeric code and in my case it happens to start with a zero. Storing the postcode as a number stripped the leading zero leading to all kinds of fun when mail from CRT reached the German postal system which is highly dependant on postcodes to work properly.

 

I am now getting my mail addressed correctly. CRT's system which stores my address can cope with exotic foreign postcodes. It just seems that before the data was entered into that sytem the f/u with the spreadsheet had occurred, very likely due to someone in an office somewhere thinking they could use it to temporarily capture the data from the handwritten form. It probably worked fine the other 2537 times they did it that way.

 

Am I entitled to say that their system is not fit for purpose?

It's not expectations that are not being matched, it's facts, because C&RT's system is changing previous entries to read the same as the most recent (current) entry.

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Tony

You have a print-out that shows your boat has not moved since 2003.

You can show from your records that this is not the case.

With the above conversation, there would be some question about the data logging system for your boat at least.

 

Bod

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It's not expectations that are not being matched, it's facts, because C&RT's system is changing previous entries to read the same as the most recent (current) entry.

How do you know it's CRT's system which is "changing previous entries" and not error or misuse on the part of people who are entering the data or requesting the printouts?

 

Tony

You have a print-out that shows your boat has not moved since 2003.

You can show from your records that this is not the case.

With the above conversation, there would be some question about the data logging system for your boat at least.

 

Bod

 

He desn't say the printout shows the boat hasn't moved since 2003.

 

He says it shows the boat's current Home Mooring as the same location since 2003.

 

Tony - Do you mean the printout shows the boat hasn't moved from it's current Home Mooring since 2003?

Edited by NilesMI
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It's not expectations that are not being matched, it's facts, because C&RT's system is changing previous entries to read the same as the most recent (current) entry.

 

 

I still don't understand why you are posting, or what your question is.

 

You have stated that the CRT system does this. We all seem to agree with you it does.

 

So what?

 

 

MtB

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Following similar threads to this on here recently, I contactyed CaRT and asked for details of my boat being logged since the beginning of 2011. They duly obliged and the results were quite interesting. I'm not sure whether to actually publish the results on here but here's a few stats:

 

2011 - my boat was logged 9 times.

2012 - my boat was logged 11 times.

2013 - my boat was logged 22 times.

2014 - my boat has been logged 8 times up to June

 

So perhaps a stepping up in enforcement?

 

I tend to stay on my mooring most of the time and then head out for trips of 1 or 2 weeks on a regular basis. Most of these trips were only logged once and some not at all. When I was logged, it was pretty much always when moored by a town or village, remote locations were not recorded.

 

Finally, some of the records are simply wrong. For example, I was moored at Aspley Basin in Huddersfield between september 2012 and march 2013 and was logged there 6 times. The last recording was on 8th march 2013. However, I left Aspley Basin on 2nd March 2013. On the 8th march 2013 I was in Brighouse Basin. There are other small location innacuracies too. This worries me. The final recording at Aspley Basin followed 5 similar recordings at the same site. The cynic in me tends to think that the enforcement officer didn't bother going out on the 8th and simply wrote down the same list of boats as his previous visit.

 

Please note: I've never had any enforcement action against me and have never had anything stuck to my boat by CaRT.

Edited by Dave_P
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I did read your OP, but I had to do it several times becasue it was impossible for me to understand what "a printout showing my boat's current Home Mooring as the same location since 2003." actaully referred to.

 

What, exactly, does it refer to?

It refers to what is said in the next few sentences, but perhaps I should have added that my current home mooring is at Barton-in-Fabis,as it has been since BW/C&RT stopped renting me a long term mooring at Holme Lock (some 10 miles away) at the end of September 2011. Now C&RT's records( printout) show my boat as not having a home mooring anywhere other than Barton-in-Fabis since 2003.

It's incidental to this thread, but C&RT are at present refusing to renew my Licence because they don't believe Barton-in-Fabis is a genuine home mooring. Hardly surprising that C&RT disbelieve their own records though, after all who would be better placed than them to know how unreliable they are.

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Yes you are correct, and thank you for the post. I was beginning to despair of anyone actually reading and understanding what I said in the OP.

But that is not what you say in the OP, you talk there only about your home mooring, nothing about boat movements. You really need to make it clear exactly what you are complaining about, and perhaps then you will get more sympathy, but right now you are just causing confusion.

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Following similar threads to this on here recently, I contactyed CaRT and asked for details of my boat being logged since the beginning of 2011. They duly obliged and the results were quite interesting. I'm not sure whether to actually publish the results on here but here's a few stats:

 

2011 - my boat was logged 9 times.

2012 - my boat was logged 11 times.

2013 - my boat was logged 22 times.

2014 - my boat has been logged 8 times up to June

 

So perhaps a stepping up in enforcement?

 

I tend to stay on my mooring most of the time and then head out for trips of 1 or 2 weeks on a regular basis. Most of these trips were only logged once and some not at all. When I was logged, it was pretty much always when moored by a town or village, remote locations were not recorded.

 

Finally, some of the records are simply wrong. For example, I was moored at Aspley Basin in Huddersfield between september 2012 and march 2013 and was logged there 6 times. The last recording was on 8th march 2013. However, I left Aspley Basin on 2nd March 2013. On the 8th march 2013 I was in Brighouse Basin. There are other small location innacuracies too. This worries me. The final recording at Aspley Basin followed 5 similar recordings at the same site. The cynic in me tends to think that the enforcement officer didn't bother going out on the 8th and simply wrote down the same list of boats as his previous visit.

 

Please note: I've never had any enforcement action against me and have never had anything stuck to my boat by CaRT.

Edited to add:

 

I've seen staff noting my number at manned locks on the trent, severn etc. but none of these appeared on the list I was sent. Does that mean that a moving boat is not considered? Only a moored boat?

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How do you know it's CRT's system which is "changing previous entries" and not error or misuse on the part of people who are entering the data or requesting the printouts?

 

 

He desn't say the printout shows the boat hasn't moved since 2003.

 

He says it shows the boat's current Home Mooring as the same location since 2003.

 

Tony - Do you mean the printout shows the boat hasn't moved from it's current Home Mooring since 2003?

I don't . . . but I am quoting what C&RT's EO Stuart Garner told me . . . their system does it. Why should we not believe him?

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I can't actually see a need to keep a historical record of home moorings, in fact it might even be that the previous home mooring is deliberately updated with the current one (ie there is only ever one home mooring location/record stored, alongside the date it was taken up possibly). There may be an obligation under data protection act not to keep personal data longer than necessary, and unless someone can show a need for keeping a historical record of previous home moorings I'm now convinced this is what they do.

 

Those who formatted the data printout might have not realised the implication for this, so it erroneously reads that it has records of historical home moorings and shows the data, which actually reflects the current home mooring.

 

If we are in fact talking about enforcement officer logged boat sighting data, then I refer you to post #22.

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Edited to add:

 

I've seen staff noting my number at manned locks on the trent, severn etc. but none of these appeared on the list I was sent. Does that mean that a moving boat is not considered? Only a moored boat?

I think it means that the details are sent to.the office but no one then bothers to input the information into the computer
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