500Grt + STCW for 93grt vessel

I just came across something I have never encountered. I answered a solicitation on a certain website looking for a master 500 Grt with STCW.

I spoke with the present master about the position. The vessel is a semi submersible tourist carrying boat, actually a jet powered catamaran. The COI clearly states that the master is to have 500 Grt and STCW when the ballast system is to be operated, despite the vessel being 93Grt. I am taking a guess here that because there is ballast involved, the USCG wants someone that had some ship stability training as master.

This is a new vessel that just went into service in Hawaii. Maybe I am presuming too much but could this be in response to the dive boat accident? If the USCG is going to be issuing more COIs with this wording it is going to upend the tour boat business. The pay was quoted at $200-$500 a day. Anyone with that tonnage on their license could make nearly double that on an appropriate vessel.

The present master just got out of yachts and he lives down the street, so he wants to be home more often.

Has anyone heard of this being done elsewhere?

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Can you divulge the required number of crew and maximum number of passengers per COI? Could it be a factor?

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I don’t know for sure without another phone call, but I do know there is no engineer required.
I would assume Master and a deckhand or two.


Wonder if she ballasts down after leaving the dock? I’d hate to be sippin’ a Gansett at the window while it starts dripping.

Hooper: “I think I am familiar with the fact that you are going to ignore this problem until it swims up and bites you in the ass.”

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Maybe it requires STCW and thus requires Master less than 500 GT (II/3).