When performing space rendezvous operations close to the target vehicle (0-5 m relative distance), pursuer thruster escape nozzle gases can hit the target if firings are done in the direction of docking axis. Eventually, this firings could damage the target surfaces (by heating or erosion), or provoke some attitude and orbit changes of the target (slightly).
My question is: how current and past space vehicles with rendezvous capabilities (Soyuz, ATV, Dragon, Space Shuttle,etc) have deal with this issue since following an R-bar or V-bar rendezvous requires to perform braking firings when the pursuer is very close to the target?. Are target surfaces (ISS,etc) designed to cope with this plumes?.
Figure extracted from: "Fast, Safe, and Propellant-Efficient Spacecraft Planning under Clohessy-Wiltshire-Hill Dynamics"