US Army Corps of Engineers Hopper Dredge Experience


#1

After using the search function I have found that there is not a lot whole lot on the ACOE Dredges. Is there anyone here with experience onboard their west coast fleet?

Thank You.


#2

I did my commercial cruise last summer on the USACE hopper dredge [I]Essayons [/I]as an engine cadet. Both crews on the ship were pretty relaxed- deck and engine. For some of the guys, especially engineering officers, it was their last job before retirement. What would you like to know?


#3

I am reviving an old thread here. I was offered a mate job on one of the West coast hopper dredges and want to know of anyone’s experience on these vessels. Hows the overtime, berthing, crew changes, travel, per diem? How is leave accrued? I’ve got a pretty good gig now working on a Research vessel but we are doing O&G work and I’m nervous that work will dry up. Should I leave the high paying job for the secure Government job?


#4

The govt. job was the best I ever had and if you’re old enough to be thinking about what you’re going to do for a paycheck when you can’t sail any longer you’d stick with the govt. I doubt the job is any trial but it’ll keep you in the system and make it easier to move on, move up. they pay for all your classes etc.
I’ve found a govt. job is often a good reference despite what people say about it!


#5

Did you ever get this figured out? I’ve looked at the job posting for the Third Mate, and I can’t figure out what they get paid. The posting says $32-38 hourly, but how many hours? How much overtime? Does anyone know what the estimated annual pay would be for s Third Mate on an ACOE Hopper dredge?


#6

[QUOTE=calusa;196202]Did you ever get this figured out? I’ve looked at the job posting for the Third Mate, and I can’t figure out what they get paid. The posting says $32-38 hourly, but how many hours? How much overtime? Does anyone know what the estimated annual pay would be for s Third Mate on an ACOE Hopper dredge?[/QUOTE]

As a survey launch operator for USACE, I’ve often spent several days at a time standing by at a dock waiting for a tech to show up. After a major storm, I’ve surveyed 12 hours a day seven days a week for 6 plus weeks on end, plus travel time, piling up the overtime and some years, doubling my annual salary. My experience working in conjunction with hopper dredge leads me to believe their schedule might be more predictable. Hopefully, someone on this forum with direct experience can help answer that question better.
I spent years hopping from job to job looking for adventure and enjoying variety. I landed government work late in my working life. I found more deadwood and BS than in the civilian world but considering general job protection and benefits, I agree with Jimrr, it was a gravy train and one of the best decisions of my life as I got older and not quite so hell bent on adventure.


#7

The long and short of it, as a 3rd Mate you will be working 12 hours a day, 8 days on and 6 days off…I’ll let you do the math. Having said that, the work is steady, the schedule is regular and the checks come like clockwork. You CAN get overtime and things change a little sometimes…like if we are working out of our normal AO and the schedule switches (temporarily) from 8on/6 off to 16 on/13 off, or during annual haul-out where you might work “deck-hours” (10 hour days and not much overtime).
There are other benefits to being a government employee like unioon benefits, TSP ( 6% matching ), generous vacation days, etc.
…hope that helps.


#8

@ Calusa, which hopper dredges’ are you referring too? West coast, east coast or gulf?


#9

https://www.tsp.gov/PlanParticipation/EligibilityAndContributions/typesOfContributions.html

How are you getting 6% matching?


#10

…sorry, 5% matching.


#11

Just making sure Im not missing out on free money!


#12

You get an 80hr. check every14 days.


#13

Thanks for the info!


#14

The opening was for West Coast, but I have no preferences. Just thinking about getting out of the Gulf. I’ve had enough of the mind game BS down here.


#15

Reviving an old thread again, does ACOE earn overtime like MSC? Anything over 8 hours a day and all weekends​ are overtime? If it’s a 12 hour day, every day, is a week 40 hours at base pay plus 44 hours at 1.5 * base pay (overtime)?


#16

Yes. Also, the same is true for NOAA.


#17

No, we work 10 hour days and anything over THAT is overtime?
…and what is this…weekend… you speak of? We work 8 days on and get 6 days off. Or did you miss that part of the above post?


#18

I’m obviously talking about a different vessel than you (12 hour days, 14 days on, 14 days off). I’m trying to figure out what the listed hourly pay converts into in reality.


#19

Since the original post concerned West Coast USACE hopper dredges…and they both have the same schedule…I don’t know to whom you are referring.


#20

I’m asking how the Army Corp calculates their pay. Is it really that different from boat to boat?