Eyesight req for OS?


#1

Hi!

I’d like to become an OS, but I’m worried about whether my eyesight would cause a problem. It’s 20/25 in my left, 20/400 in my right, but it corrects to 20/20 and 20/40, respectively, with glasses/contacts.

What endorsements would I need to be qualified to work in the deck dept. of a supertanker?

I eventually want to get my AB, and then become a 3rd Mate. I eventually want to become a Master.

Reason for wanting to work at sea:

  1. Dad was a supertanker shipmaster (now a industry-renowned self-employed marine surveyor), and I want to follow in his footsteps
  2. Career path
  3. Travel and comradery

What’s the salary for an OS, $35,000?

What would I be able to bring with me during a voyage, just my clothes and laptop? That’s fine with me.

Thanks for the advice!


#2

Vision requirements are in 46 CFR 10.215(b)(1). For deck ratings, the standard is correctable to 20/40 in one eye, and uncorrected of at least 20/200 in the same eye.


#3

Well, then Dad’s info about my eyesight being limited has been totally wrong. Then again, he was trained 30 years ago in Britain, back when they had no Third Mate’s license and had an Extra Master’s license. His license is still active, despite the fact he never sailed as a captain, and he hasn’t been doing any sailing for 20 years.

Funny story: when Dad got his green card, the USCG wouldn’t endorse his British license (which every other country would endorse), but the USN would accept him for employment (forgot where and how). That’s so weird.

What do you recommend for training to be a third mate:

  1. Go to Cal Maritime and get my BS in Marine Transportation, or
  2. Start as on OS, get qualified to be an AB Unlimited, and enroll in a AB to Mate program.

Which looks better to hirers? I may want a shoreside job, so would I be best served by enrolling in CMA and earning a BS?

Thanks


#4

depending on were you live, you might want to check with a doctor who issues the USCG medical evaluation. then you will know for sure, should only be about 65 dollars,

do a search of Gcaptain and look for item to bring in a sea bag… very recent thread on that,

starting pay varies with what company you work for, might want to look into the mate osv program that some companies offer, (OSV) is off shore supply


#5

[quote=Mr 100-ton;21011]depending on were you live, you might want to check with a doctor who issues the USCG medical evaluation. then you will know for sure, should only be about 65 dollars,

do a search of Gcaptain and look for item to bring in a sea bag… very recent thread on that,

starting pay varies with what company you work for, might want to look into the mate osv program that some companies offer, (OSV) is off shore supply[/quote]

I’ve looked up the eyesight reqs (I meet them! Thank God I got that contact lens my OD has been recommending for years), I’m sure I’ll pass the health exam.

I plan on working as my current career I’m training for (cardiac sonographer), to build up money for CMA tuition. And for an internal contact lens implant. That should take about a year or two. Then I can get my BS and my Third Mate Unlimited license.

Why is CMA tuition so bloody cheap? $20,000/year for a 4 year degree plus a professional license.


#6

Mr. Cavo,

I’ve recently started considering corrective eye surgery so I can drop the glasses/contacts, in your experience is there any problems that might cause with the CG when I renew? I imagine I would have to report it on the medical form under “eye surgery”, but I haven’t been able to find anything about if it’s disqualifying or what sort of waivers might be required, if any. Currently 3000 master/3rd mate AGT FYI.

Thanks.


#7

Consider what will happen if they botch your surgery. Do a lot of research before you put your eyes under the knife or laser. Proceed with caution.


#8

I concur with Doug. Not even botched, just less than perfect is all it takes to end your maritime career, and is the reason I just stick with glasses. The only thing that would make me consider it is if my [B]un[/B]corrected sight was outside the limit.


#9

Me too. I’d love a set of those new implantable contacts, but I’m not going to chance it until retirement.


#10

I have checked into this a few times my self and feel the same way…I would love to dump the contacts but the slightest imperfection would be devastating …My uncorrected vision is just a tad out side the guidelines and they gave me a waiver no problem…


#11

I had lasik and it changed my life for the better. But I definitely had to consider the risks and am lucky enough that I could find decent work on the beach if things didn’t turn out OK.
Just wanted to put in an eye surgery happy ending story…


#12

That’s why I’m picking a surgeon that has done this >10,000 times, and has gotten rave reviews from his patients and colleagues. And, my right eye (my bad eye that won’t interfere with getting a license, since my good eye meets that req, acording to the second poster) will be getting the op, not my left (my good eye that corrects to 20/20)

But, I probably won’t yet, since my eyesight is fine w/o it.


#13

I had lasik surgery several years ago. best money I ever spent. no matter what you have done, do your homework!!!


#14

I did. I’ll either pick my ophthalmologist, or his senior colleague in Beverley Hills.

Anyway, I’ve got a few questions:

  1. How long are voyages, three-six months? Dad’s info is kind of outdated as he last sailed 20 years ago.
  2. After I get my Third Mate Unlimited license, how long would it take me to find work?
  3. If it turns out there’s no work available, what should I do? Find a temp job as my previous career as a cardiac sonographer and have my name posted at the LB Port hiring hall?
  4. How long, on average does it take to get a Master Mariner Unlimited license? Don’t tell me how many days of sea time, b/c I know that.

#15

[quote=Protoman2050;21052]
After I get my Third Mate Unlimited license, how long would it take me to find work?

Any particular reason you want t third mate license? Have you looked into PMI/MITAGS’s Workboat Academy? You come out of that with 500 ton Mate Oceans and 1600 Mate Near Coastal, and a completed TOAR. There is a lot more work (even today) in that segment as opposed to deep draft.


#16

[quote=Capt_Anonymous;21068][quote=Protoman2050;21052]
After I get my Third Mate Unlimited license, how long would it take me to find work?

Any particular reason you want t third mate license? Have you looked into PMI/MITAGS’s Workboat Academy? You come out of that with 500 ton Mate Oceans and 1600 Mate Near Coastal, and a completed TOAR. There is a lot more work (even today) in that segment as opposed to deep draft.[/quote]

Can’t a Third Mate Unlimited apply for a 1600 GRT Master license (if you can upgrade, you should be able to downgrade as well)?

And, I’ve always wanted to work on supertankers and container ships like my Dad did. Maybe cruise ships, like he did when he served as a staff captain.