Large OSV Master to Master Inland AGT


I’d be happy to, merely point them out.


So are you saying that there are no OSV’s in the Gulf of Mexico that only run with two bridge officers onboard?


that pretty much sums it up…on an OSV while transiting there are two officers on the bridge each with OINCW and they rotate being in charge exactly as with DP. One hour directing the navigation and one hour not. Of course, the man not directing the navigation generally is not performing as a lookout or helmsman and instead has their face in front of a computer screen managing their fantasy football team or something similar. Also, there never is an AB up there hanging out. I don’t know what they do when the vessel is going to or from, but they aren’t on the bridge! Vessels in the GoM just don’t conform to “ship” bridge management and never will.


I’m saying the only bridge officers standing continuous 12 hour navigational watches solo without at least occasionally leaving an AB or Engineer on the wheel or waking up the other watch either have colostomy bags or a hard time telling the truth.


Again, leaving the AB at the wheel for a minute or two (or five) to step into the head does not make the AB now the OICNW.

Also, if you can’t go 12 hours without taking a shit then you need to see a doctor because there’s something wrong with you.


You apparently haven’t sailed with some of the cooks/stewards I have…

I think that if you are the OICNW and leave the bridge without a relief, you are probably still the OICNW, you are just absent from the bridge and possibly negligent based on the circumstances of your absence.


It’s definitely understood that on a boat with only two bridge officers onboard that if you run downstairs to eat or are in the head with just an AB or even worse an Engineer on Nav watch and something bad happens you’re screwed. Just one of the perks of working on a job like that.


that’s debatable. I think holding it in is worse.

anyway, timing is huge. occasional head calls when the situation isn’t critical shouldn’t be an issue i.e. 100 miles offshore with no traffic. trying to plan ahead based on your situational awareness.
same thing with eating, however I personally would run it up to the wheelhouse and eat as opposed to staying in the galley.


Can’t you just call the galley, ask the Cook to dish up your choice and send the Messboy up with it???:innocent:

BTW; Why is it that you guys eat in the galley, not in the mess room (or dining saloon for senior officers)??

PS> OK, I just remember, on Mud boats the galley is in the mess room (or v.v.) and there is no mess boy. (How uncivilized)


The boat I’m on now has a full head in the bridge, a feature a lot of new builds have.


If presence on the bridge is not an essential element of being in charge of a navigational watch, the question then becomes why isn’t the Master OICNW 24/7. Let’s see if you can answer that one.

As Mr. Cavo implies, there is no legally defensible reason for the OICNW to be absent from the bridge while the vessel is underway. The navigational watch must be continuous or it is no watch at all.


That’s why there are heads on the bridge of most ships and supply boats. On tugs and other small boats you make a judgement call on whether your deckhand is capable of handling the boat while you run down to pee. Stepping out of the wheelhouse for a minute to pee (or into the head on the bridge) doesn’t change the fact that you are the OICNW.

Yes, it gets confusing because both the people on the bridge of some supply boats have licenses. Sometimes the senior guy will go down and watch TV for 30 minutes (or more) etc. That doesn’t change the fact that what happens on that watch he had the final call over and the junior got isn’t actually in charge. It’s not just a matter of navigating the boat safely, it’s who is in charge of all aspects of the boat at that time.


You’re confounding management responsibility during a particular time period (which, as I pointed out earlier, ultimately rests with the potentially sleeping Master), with the legal responsibility to maintain an adequate and legally compliant watch at all times. That’s the difference between leaving an AB on the wheel or a fully competent and qualified mate. When the chief mate or whatever he calls himself steps down stairs for breakfast and his morning dump, if he leaves behind an AB he has not been properly relieved and is therefore culpable for the navigational deficits thus arising (the idea that there are none being based mostly on hope). If however he leaves behind a fully cognizant and qualified officer, particularly one who has been in a concurrent navigational watch with him and so can be assumed to be cognizant of the navigational circumstances, he has been properly relieved and thus the officer he leaves behind assumes responsibility for the safe navigation of the vessel. Making that officer the OICNW until he has been relieved in turn.

All of this of course assumes that a two watch system entailing 12 hour watches is legal for the voyage in the first place, and that the provision of a lookout is legally sufficient at the time of the relief as well.


I still disagree. Being temporarily alone on the bridge and thus allowed to make navigational decisions without immediate oversight still does not make one IN CHARGE of the watch. They are just navigating the vessel.

I know this distinction because I’ve been through it with the USCG for other reasons. Being IN CHARGE OF THE WATCH encompasses everything going on on the boat during the watch and goes far beyond just being in charge of safely navigating the boat.


The OICNW is a baton passed between the competent not a rank aboard ship. Otherwise as with a three watch system for instance, why isn’t the chief mate or Master the OICNW anytime they happen to be present on the bridge?

I’m not saying it isn’t possible for the chief officer of an operational watch to retain OICNW even when the wheel itself is deferred. But I see that as a situation where the senior man intends to actively supervise navigation even though another is on the wheel. My point is mainly that this circumstance cannot be assumed to exist even after a proper relief has occurred and the senior man is no longer present on the bridge. If he leaves behind a cognizant and legally adequate watch then those individuals are legally culpable for their own actions, presuming of course that the senior man’s supervisory acts have not in some way prejudiced this.


The question should be why would they be?

We’re not discussing legal liability. For those purposes I’d say most of the liability would be on the person with the conn at the time but there might be an argument from the other side of “if they were competent to be by themselves why were they not promoted to watch leader?”

This discussion came about from a mention of sea time and how the extra mates on supply boats are getting sea time as OICNW when they aren’t. Being alone on the bridge for maybe an hour a day (at most) isn’t “standing a watch” as mate. If they aren’t the one actually in charge of the whole operation of the vessel (as opposed to being the one steering for some of the time) then they aren’t the officer in charge of the watch.


Again, if seniority in the chain of command alone determines who is in charge of the navigation of the vessel at any given moment, then you have decided that the senior man present on the bridge is automatically responsible for the navigation of the vessel at that time. So on an unlimited vessel with a three watch system you have just decided that the Master is OICNW whenever he steps foot on the bridge. Try and sell that one.


Nice straw man.

Again, the the issue isn’t who is “in charge of the navigation of the vessel”. Being the OICNW encompasses far more than just navigating the vessel. The person who is in charge of the watch can leave a qualified and licensed person at the conn, who is then (only) responsible for not hitting anything, the person in charge of the watch doesn’t stop being in change of the overall operation of the vessel during his watch.


You’re imagining, basically, that STCW is concerned with the structure of vessel management generally rather than the safety of navigation in particular. But while it is true that from a management perspective that senior men remain responsible for their directives, from the standpoint of STCW “OICNW” merely designates a person legally competent to autonomously supervise navigation. Which is what in fact occurs, for instance, when the chief mate walks down to the engine room to consult with an engineer about some maintenance need or other, and leaves a mate on the wheel who is fully competent to supervise navigation in his absence. That mate is the OICNW until relieved.


Who the fuck is talking about STCW definitions?!? How many times are you going to make a straw man?

I’m talking about USCG definitions for granting sea time.

I’ve said that numerous times before. I’m going off their working definition of what it means to be “in charge” of the watch.

Do you seriously think that if the USCG saw, simultaneously, sea time letters for 4, 5, and sometimes more officers on the same boat all claiming 12 hour watches as Mate/OICNW they’d be ok with that? The only reason people get away with it is the NMC hasn’t caught on.