Pilots come aboard ship to assist the crew during the most critical and potentially hazardous phases of a voyage. Qualified pilots possess particular local knowledge and have the necessary ship-handling skills to assist the safe arrival and departure of vessels. Normally, pilots board and disembark using a traditional rope ladder from and to a pilot boat. However, this can be a very dangerous procedure if those involved do not adhere to International Maritime Organization (IMO) standards or fail to practise acceptable seamanship skills. A number of pilots have died as a result of accidents while boarding/disembarking from ships, and many more have been seriously injured.