Great Lakes to Oceans TOAR

Good day,

Question regarding upgrading my TOAR from lakes to Oceans. I completed my lakes endorsement, and soon after became aware that Great Lakes time counted 1-1 for Oceans service. I have completed the necessary sign offs on the oceans TOAR. However I have been told that to do a route extension, even though Great Lakes time counts for sea service, I need 90 days of OC/NC time to apply for said extension.

I wanted to confirm the validity of this and also inquire if the service does have to be on a towing vessel, which I would assume? Or can the 90 days come from any vessel OC/NC going.

Any information will be appreciated,


Great Lakes counts day for day for the total sea time (see 46 CFR 11.401(e)) . For towing vessel, the regulations generally specify the time has to be on a towing vessel, or more specifically, under “observation and training on a towing vessel.” You haven’t provided details of your situation, but if the applicable regs say time on a towing vessel, it has to be on a towing vessel. Increases in scope (adding new routes) and raise of grade of towing vessel endorsements almost always are specific that it has to be on towing vessels.

Even if you were to get an endorsement as Mate or Master 500 GRT (or more), you are still going to need time on a towing vessel on oceans.

Do you have a Master of Towing?

See 46 CFR 11.464

1 Like

I see now that I did neglect to include pertinent information to my situation. I have my 3/M Unlimited working aboard a tug. Also, I have been considering taking a job in the Gulf that is not aboard tugs. If I was to come back to Tugs in future, is there an expiration of my completed OC TOAR? Or would I only require the 90 days for the raise in grade?

Sadly I do not

Also, thank you for the information, much appreciated.

If your 3rd Mate is for oceans, you can work as a mate on a towing vessel on oceans after completing the TOAR and getting 30 days “under observation and training” on a towing vessel. This time has to be on a towing vessel. You don;'t need the endorsement in your MMC, as long as you have with you proof of the 30 days and the completed TOAR.