Qualifications


#1

Pardon my observations and questions but I’m curious…are we (the maritime industry) suffering the same cabotage issues as everyone else (the airline industry)?
I consider the maritime and aviation industry business as almost parrallel. We haul people and property from here to there and have to navigate and communicate in all kinds of weather, environments, and other conditions, often man-made.
Why are the requirements so extremely different? If the general public knew what the standards for airline pilots were the airlines’ loads would be a lot lighter! The requirements for Master 500 Tons Near Coastal are MUCH more stringent than a commrcial pilot or even “Airline Transport Pilot”, which is. supposedly, the highest grade an airplane pilot can achieve.
I have lots of time and experience in both industries and I can say without any reservation that the maritime standards and requirements are far in excess of aviation requirements. Whether one should be raised or the other loweredt is open to debate. I just hope that the standaeds are upheld for everyone…not just the lowest bidders.
I think the maritime side is getting screwed, but that’s just my opinion.
Nemo


#2

I was in the trucking arena for a number of years and I see the same thing as you do Capt Nemo…Trucks are regulated by CFR’s and have similar rules as the maritime industry, but the maritime rules are much more excessive…
I 've often wondered why? I guess 80,000 lbs of freight with a moron behind the wheel is acceptable on our public highways even if the moron is not here legally…The licensing process is a joke compared to what it takes to even get an AB …


#3

I’ve always just assumed it was beacuse the maritime industry is hundredes of years old vs the other two industries being invented in teh last century. The some laws and traditions have been accepted the world over for hundreds of years and more just keeps being added to it every year. Give it a few hundred more years and airlines and truckers will have it as bad.


#4

"I have lots of time and experience in both industries and I can say without any reservation that the maritime standards and requirements are far in excess of aviation requirements."
I respectfully disagree. A pilot with a ATR license has to pass a physical much more stringent than any maritime master. A pilot flying for a scheduled carrier must be checked out by a FAA instructor for each type aircraft they fly before being allowed ‘behind the wheel’. Simulator and or/in flight instruction for each aircraft type [even a different year of the same make and model !] is required before one even gets to sit right seat. If marine masters were required to pass the ATR physical alone there would be a lot less ships masters. There are very good reasons flying is one of the safest forms of transportation of goods or people. If marine engineers were held to the same education and experience standards as FAA mechanics there would be a lot fewer engineers. Heck, if the average ship had to go thru a pre-sail check list even remotely resembling a pre-flight check there would be a lot of ships tied to the dock. When was the last time you heard of a ship not being able to sail because of an alarm indicating a door wasn’t closed even though everyone knows the door is closed and locked, it’s just a faulty alarm? Happens all the time in the aviation industry.
Tengineer


#5

I respectfully disagree. A pilot with a ATR license has to pass a physical much more stringent than any maritime master. A pilot flying for a scheduled carrier must be checked out by a FAA instructor for each type aircraft they fly before being allowed ‘behind the wheel’. Simulator and or/in flight instruction for each aircraft type [even a different year of the same make and model !] is required before one even gets to sit right seat. If marine masters were required to pass the ATR physical alone there would be a lot less ships masters. There are very good reasons flying is one of the safest forms of transportation of goods or people. If marine engineers were held to the same education and experience standards as FAA mechanics there would be a lot fewer engineers. Heck, if the average ship had to go thru a pre-sail check list even remotely resembling a pre-flight check there would be a lot of ships tied to the dock. When was the last time you heard of a ship not being able to sail because of an alarm indicating a door wasn’t closed even though everyone knows the door is closed and locked, it’s just a faulty alarm? Happens all the time in the aviation industry.

I have to respectfully disagree, sir.
You may have a lot of experience in your field, but you are full of bilgewater here.
In the first place, there is no such rating as “ATR”. There hasn’t been since the late seventies. An “ATR” is a French-built turboprop.
I’ve held an “ATP” since 1986 and have been subject to at least 50 FAA medical exams. If you can sign the check you pass the physical. It’s as simple as that.

“even a different year of the same make and model !] is required before one even gets to sit right seat.”

Where did you get that? I’ve issued over 500 type ratings in EMB-145 aircraft and I’ve never heard of that. We have three models of the same aircraft built over the past ten years and qualification on the “base” aircraft is all that is required to fly any of them.
Let’s talk, T. I’ve got a lot to learn and I’m always willing.
I’m not trying to pick a fight…although I’ve never run from one. I have flown for a “scheduled carrier” for the past 23 years. You tell me about the engine room and I’ll listen. Don’t tell me about airplanes and “scheduled carriers”.
I didn’t intend this to become a pissing contest. I just wanted to contrast the differences in requirements for certification in the maritime industry as compared to commercial aviation. Maritime certification is much tougher. I have the highest aviation certification available. Getting it is a piece of cake compared to Master/Unlimited/Oceans.
Just ask the 200 hour wonders flying you in and out of Lafayette and Baton Rouge.
Not 200 days. 200 hours.
Nemo


#6

Excuse me if I seem dated. I held an ATR in the late 60s and early 70s; at that time the requirements were much higher than that for boat captains and the requirements I stated previously were just the beginning and I stand by all my statements of that time with which I am quite familiar. If the requirements have been dumbed down for sky pilots it’s a shame. The requirements for vessel engineers has been dumb downed too as far as I am concerned. I think they will still give an oral exam for the lower level licenses [ a relatively new license] which implies the ability to read is not needed. You don’t even have to draw to scale any more on the upper level licenses and all the questions one may be asked are available for review thanks to the “Freedom of Information Act” which was not fully in effect when I got both my ATR and 1st assistant engineers license. If the requirements are now higher for ship captains than plane captains that speaks volumes of the general lowering of standards of both professions.


#7

I must add to this… Why are the requirments of getting a towing endorsment so much more strindgent than getting just the the general license? With the license I currently have I can carry several pasengers, but cant run a tug boat wthout a towing endorsment. I mean I fully understand that there is alot of knowledge that is needed in the towing industry, as there is in running a crew boat, supply boat, etc. I just find it hard to fathom that I have to work on a tug boat for three years before I can become “Master of Towing Vessels”, but I can take the life of 70+ rig workers, all the responsibilitys of running a boat,etc. in my hands at anytime, just not a tug boat.


#8

Splash
Here is what I’ve learned regarding the requirements of any license. It’s all about the most recent tragedy. Over the last twenty years or so there have been some high profile accidents involving towing vessels resulting in loss of life, bridges destroyed and other inconviences for the general public. This results in the regulatory bodies involved demanding new standards of qualifications for the captains. Of course they do this after consulting with the owners of the vessels to make sure it’s not too much of a burden on them.
You can bet that as soon as you drown 70+ rig workers the requirements for carrying them will go up. Odds are that you won’t get another look out on the bridge but you may have to attend a class on how not to drown rig workers.


#9

Tengineer I totally agree, maybe someone can explain to me how is it that the master (100T) carrying up to 100 plus souls on board has the least amount of training compared to an OSV or general cargo Master carrying rubber dog s@#%.

note: this is not a slam on the crew boat guys, i was once one of them


#10

That’s weird… I was just thinking about rubber dog s@#%.


#11

More specifically:
Maverick: Just want to serve my country, be the best pilot in the Navy, sir.

Stinger: Don’t screw around with me Maverick. You’re a hell of an instinctive pilot. Maybe too good. I’d like to bust your butt but I can’t. I got another problem here. I gotta send somebody from this squadron to Miramar. I gotta do something here, I still can’t believe it. I gotta give you your dream shot! I’m gonna send you up against the best. You two characters are going to Top Gun.
Stinger: And if you screw up just this much, you’ll be<strong> flying a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong! </strong>

Maverick: Yes sir!

JT sends from the Port of Albany


#12

The Coast Guard has already begun rolling back the requirements for the Towing License; the way they were originally structured was indeed an uninformed knee-jerk reaction to tragedies involving towboats. I don’t know how far they’ll take it, but as a licensed Master of Towing Oceans, and a Designated Examiner for the Towing Licenses, I am watching closely. I’m more interested actually in the move to make tugs inspected vessels. I can’t for the life of me see how they Coast Guard can afford to dedicate resources to inspecting towing vessels. They barely have enough to inspect the inspected vessels.
Informal poll: Has anyone, ever in their career, had a Coast Guard inspector or boarding party ask to see their license and z-card?
Me? Never once.


#13

Once
After being overhauled outside of the High Span in the CBBT. The young lady who requested my crew to assemble on the bow, and my credentials, did so in a very professional and matter-of-fact way…at gunpoint…and I accommodiated her… while her crew assembled my crew on the bow…at gunpoint. The oldest of this boarding party was probably 26 years old.
Admittedly, I was a 26 year old Captain, but I had 2500 days at sea and no firearm. They didn’t and did, in that order.
We had 700,000 lbs. of stinking fish and 7,000 gallons of diesel fuel aboard. After searching every nook-and-cranny on the boat the Coast Guard boarding party didn’t express an interest in either one.
If you’ve never seen a group of big, experienced fisherman being herded around by a 19 year-old with a 9mm, it’s priceless.
Nemo


#14

I bet it is nemo.
When I was on a hand on the last CG bottom side that the Janson G had before it came off lease with Seacor they looked at the Officers license. Part of it was that the boat was cross classed as an Oil Response Vessel and had to have 2 captains on board. It was funny beacuse they pulled one of the captains off and sent over a guy with his 3rd mate’s ticket. CG said it wasnt good enough and there has to be 2 MASTERS on board. Crazy that a guy with a 3rd mates ticket didnt cover the COI for a 120 foot boat.
Im interested to see how the new towing requirements are going to be. Last I heard was 3 years running in the wheel house and you could move over to tugs and compleate your TOAR, is that right?


#15

I’ve been boarded many times. The USCG crew has always conducted themselves professionally. When they ask you to muster on the deck and inquire about weapons, it’s for their safety and I don’t blame them. They have never asked for my credentials, only the COI and ships paperwork. I’ve never volunteered them either. Who needs trouble?
Funny how some of us who object to boardings never bother to ask the Rescue Swimmer for his credentials when he drops out of the sky to save our ass.
These young men and women have a tough job in a dangerous enviorment. God Bless 'em.
With that said, never volunteeer credentials unless they are asked for.


#16

<span style=“color: #0000ff]“Informal poll: Has anyone, ever in their career, had a Coast Guard inspector or boarding party ask to see their license and z-card?”</span>
<span style=”]Every year during our COI renewal the USCG inspectors ask that I gather all of the original licenses, Z-cards, and STCW certs of the crew in my office and then they review them against the required manning. Typically that’s the extent of it but I’ve had them go so far as to ask those who have stipulations requiring a spare pair of glasses to report to the office to prove they have them. It’s just like anything else with the USCG… depends who you get. ABS has done the same during external ISM audits.</span>


#17

Ebb, I must agree! The coasties are over worked and under payed, well some, like the rescue swimmers and such. As to the guys making the rules, I have to wonder about them. I mean I fully understand cargo is cargo, but 10-20-30-70 lives, i feel like human lives aboard a passenger vessel are worth more than, 10,000bbls of crude ,nafta,benzine,or gas. I understand what they all will do if some idiot runs aground or into someone, to the enviorment, but hey lets think of morals here. CA, I have also heard of the CG lowering the standards of the towing endorsment on the 100-500 ton guys, and I agree, I feel that everyone should have a level playing field as far as endorsments, get the license, then spend the days getting expirence aboard towing vessels, get the endorsement, hold on, let me rephrase my self, make it a level playing field for the guys who have worked on tugs to advance.I just feel like the guys with 100GT should have the same deal as 500 GT guys have.


#18

Jemplayer,
“Crazy that a guy with a 3rd mates ticket didnt cover the COI for a 120 foot boat.” What was your tonnage? A 3rd Mate is a 100ton master even though it’s not printed on the license, I believe the same is true for 1600 mate. It’s in the CFR under a paragraph titled “equivalents” I looked it up a while back and put the quote in another one of these discussion topics.


#19

Is it actually written somewhere that a 3/M is a 100 ton master? I’ve always heard that it’s assumed and not written on the license and all that, but nobody has EVER been able to show me it in writing anywhere.


#20

Capt nemo, I had a similar incident . I know the question was CG boardings but I thought it fit…
While cruising with my family on our Catalina 42, off the Baja Penninsula .We anchored for the night at the North end of Isla Cedros…I got up at daylight to make preperations to get underway and my wife just stepped into the shower…
With a cup of coffee in my hand I went topside to the cockpit and was greeted by 12 teenagers ,all dressed in black sporting automatic rifles…Not a one spoke english…They were just off my stern in an open panga…I waved and yelled buenos dias and tried to be as friendly as possible…Hollored down to my wife and suggested that she might want to speed her shower up as we were about to be boarded. by what I hoped was the Mexican Navy…lol…
3 of them crowded into the cockpit with me while the rest had their weapons pointed in our general direction ,from their vessel…The guy in charge had a .45 in a holster and the flap was released…They stayed topside and checked our passports and boats papers…They wanted to see all the crew…The crew consisted of my wife and kids…So out comes my wife who barely had time to get some sweats on and my son and daughter who were more than a little ticked to be drug up to the cockpit at such an ungodly hour…Once the Mexicans saw the kids they relaxed and decided we weren’t smugglers .The funny part is the expression on the kids’s face at all the people and the guns…They lost their attitude pretty fast…