Can you just leave someone? Mariner stranded

To be exact, only certain vessels need to contact the OCMI about sailing short. In fact, numerically, most US flags vessels do not need to, certainly not uninspected boats less than 200 tons on domestic voyages. The matter is sorted in 46 CFR § 15.105.

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By design somehow, many less than or at 200 Grt tugs pushed/ towed many units in the 30 to 40 thousand tons coastal business… We were overloaded and underpowered. Still got it done. A missing crew member was not appreciated… Glad to have sailed with numerous crews that gave a shit. Early on I worked a 5 man boat. When the 5th man didn’t show up, work was that much harder on us. Later on, had a 12 man crew on a much larger rig. The “Efficiency Experts” convinced the company we could work with 8. When the 8th man didn’t show up, was not well recieved to say the least

As an addendum to my previous post, it was very rare that the engineers didn’t show up. I think they cared about the rig as much as I did. I enjoyed that morning cup of coffee with the Chief, a little communication went a long way.

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Actually, that is not correct. Even if you are in Europe, as Master you need to contact USCG Group Europe and ask permission to sail short. They will want an email stating how you plan on meeting the watch and station bill with the missing Mariner, the facts why the Mariner left the Vessel and what the Office is doing to find a new mariner to fill the open position. Then at each subsequent Port, you will need to contact USCG and go thru it all again. USCG is not playing any more with sailing short. Many US Flag Companies have had their Vessels anchored until a replacement is found.

Interesting… that’s contrary to the CFRs. Wonder what authority they’re citing to require Masters to obtain permission.

Not sure but without their permission, all hell would break out. I had to do this in both May and June while in NEUR.

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:man_shrugging:t3: I’ve been doing it within 12 hours of arrival in the next port (per 46 CFR 15.725) with absolutely no issues. Granted, that email also invariably mentions that the short man’s replacement is signed on and present as well.

Well, I had no Man replacement signed on and presented. This is what USCG Group Europe wanted.

I joined a US flagged ship within the last couple of years that had to sail short to get from Sydney to Perth missing the 1AE. They had to get permission from both the USCG and Australian authorities. It wasn’t a big deal.

That same ship later had six people walk in Puerto Rico because of chronically overdue reliefs. We were not able to stay at the dock so we went to a sketchy anchorage near the small airport on the north side of San Juan harbor. That was so sketch that the USCG had us leave the harbor and go out and drift until additional crew arrived. And so we did. For almost 5 days.

We’d drift from one end of the island to the other, then motor back to the starting point. It wasn’t the dumbest thing I’ve seen but it was pretty close. Missing crew was 3 AB’s, 3 AE and Oiler.

On non-US flag vessels there could be two different scenarios:

  1. Manning is below the “Minimum Safe Manning Certificate” issued by the flag. In this case a dispensation by flag is required before leaving port; and even if granted, departure could be refused by the port state (harbour master)

  2. Manning is equivalent or in excess of the Minimum safe manning, but below the manning level agreed in the ITF/Union Special Agreement to the CBA: In this case, the ship can depart without any notice to flag or port state.

In both cases, crew is entitled for shorthand manning bonus (consistent of the basic wage of the absent crew divided equally and pro rata to the department taking over the duties), whilst the ship owner is responsible to fill the rank at earliest opportunity (usually at the next port).

I assume something equivalent exists for the US flag, probably with different terminology.

As usual, I go back to that ATB for a story. I had an assistant (in a three man engine room) who also sailed as my relief, largely because his life ashore was such a train wreck that it benefited him to stay at sea. However. . . . he did go ashore and get into various shenanigans. . . one particular stop in Tampa, at Hooker’s Point, we were getting ready to sail, and there was no sign of him. I let the old man know, and went back down below to prepare for sailing. I figured that he was at Stoney’s, but I didn’t have the time or inclination to go get him. The cook, his partner in crime, ran ashore and brought him back. . . he then started giving me a bunch of crap about trying to sail without him. Like most alcoholics, he was very quiet and meek for the next couple of days and never brought it up. This behavior was typical of him, and eventually, he did get himself fired for coming back late, drunk and nearly shutting down the plant as it passed under the Navigation Boulevard lift bridge in Corpus. He thought that the bridge siren was a critical engine alarm. Thank God one of my crackerjack assistants was onboard to stop him. But, of course that shortened my time off. . . again. . .

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At the yachtie end of things some countries are not amused if you leave crew behind. Some of them make you post a bond of some kind that you lose if they aren’t on the boat when you leave.
I have also had to write up articles to get crew into places, otherwise they couldn’t even show up on a one-way ticket.

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Corpus lift bridge… not a good spot to lose the plant. I think it was called Tule Lake lift bridge…Been a while but believe there was some steering going on either before or after the bridge…

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The safe manning certificate is definitively without frills under some flags. Actual manning C/Eng. 1st AE, 2nd Eng. Electrician. SMC allows C/Eng and 1st AE.
On a transPacific voyage they would have to be very careful moving about the ship, oh and there was no cook.

Yeah, could be Tule Lake. I know that Navigation crossed over. It is long gone now, with no replacement… I can’t even imagine that screaming that was going on when it happened. . . I just remember getting the phone call from the office. They actually sent me to Key West to get onboard by boat, but once I got down there, cooler heads prevailed and I flew back to Miami and then got a taxi to Port Everglades.