Designated examiner for tugs

I work on a harbor tug that is confined to a geographic area and exempt from the MTV requirement. I would like to get a mate of tow endorsement on my 150 ton ticket, but no DE’s work for the company. The coast guard says they don’t care how I get a TOAR, only that a DE must witness and sign all items on the checklist. Any suggestions? I am going the ‘alternate progression’ route (three years on my ticket, 30 days observation, apprentice mate steersman course.) Thanks.

Please define, “The Coast Guard says…”? Was it NMC or or the “Center for Towing Excellence” or whatever that new thing is, or some guy doing an inspection or boarding. The only reason I am asking this question is all blue suiters are not experts on license stuff. In most cases I only trust the Code of Federal Regulations, Mr. Cavo or a VERY small number of evaluators.

I know there a couple of guys who are “DE’s” and will allegedly travel to where u r to sign this stuff off and there may be some courses out there. For courses check the NMC list of approved courses. U r rolling the dice on the travelling “DE’s”

You should have your capt. appy to be a DE I think all he needs to do is submit a letter to the uscg? Granted he is licensed and has a year or more as mater of a towing vessel.

Thanks for the response Gcaptainregular. By ‘coast guard’ I was refering to the NMC, who answered my question via email.

Unless your tug is in the oil field service trade, it is not “exempt” from the requirement to have towing specific licenses. It may be possible that the boat can be manned with a Limited Master of Towing Vessels vice a Master of Towing Vessels, but no towing vessel other than those in oil field service are exempt. A Limited Master has less sea service required, and is confined to a specific geographic area.

As noted, the Captain can become a Designated Examiner relatively easily. It sounds like you’ve contacted NMC on that. If the boat’s operations are so limited that it is not possible to do all of the tasks in the TOAR, the boat operator (company) can get approval for a limited TOAR specific to their operations that would permit reasonable omission of certain tasks, your license would be limited to that boat/company and to remove the restriction you would need to do the rest of the TOAR. The DE cannot simply wriy “not applicable” in the standard TOAR.

There are three ways to get Mate of towing vessels:

  1. Get an apprentice mate (steersman) license, then 12 months on a towing vessel while holding apprentice mate and complete the TOAR; or
  2. Hold a mate license for 500 GRT or higher, than get 30 days on a towing vessel and complete the TOAR; or
  3. Hold a master license of any tonnage and have 3 years as master on vessels 200 GRT or less and then get 30 days on a towing vessel and complete the TOAR.

If you hold Mate 150, I am not sure the “alternate progression” (aka “30-day wonder”) is available to you. If you do not have a 500 GRT (or higher license) or have 4 years as Master, you will need to first get a license as Apprentice Mate (Steersman) before you can get mate of towing vessels. You will then need 12 months service on a towing vessel after you get the apprentice mate license.