Louisiana River Boat Pilot


I am a student at Kings Point with dreams of becoming a Louisiana river boat pilot one day. I know this is a very vague question, but can anyone give me information on the river pilots. I know it takes hard work combined with luck to get in the business. I knew coming to KP would be a challenge. With that said, I am ready for the challenge of one day getting into the piloting business. Any and all advice out there will be a[COLOR=black][FONT=Verdana]ppreciated. If you would like to email me anything please email to jonathan.fogarty.2013.usmma.edu[/FONT][/COLOR]


I tried to email you jonathan, but I was told by my server that it is an invalad email address


try @usmma.edu instead of .usmma.edu


that may help


There are 4 Pilot Organizations, Bar Pilots, which work from the Sea Buoy up to Mile 0 of the river. Crescent Pilots, which run from mile 0 up to around the Huey P Long Bridge, and NOBRA which takes it from there up to Baton Rouge just above the I-10 bridge. Also, there are Federal Pilots, I do not know much about them, they usually handle the ITB’s.

The requirements for each is different, I only really know about NOBRA and Crescent. To start this is a very touchy job goal. You have to be sponsored by an existing pilot and then voted in when they have one of their rare elections. This means you need to KNOW pilots personally.

http://neworleansbatonrougepilots.com/ NOBRA Homepage

There was a Board of examiners site that seems to be down, it listed requirements to be eligible for NOBRA. I’m sure an E-mail or phone call can get you answers.

Another obstacle is your Pilots License,

FCP – (10.703)
A.1080 days of service in the deck department of vessels, OF WHICH
1.540 days of service as quartermaster, wheelsman, AB, apprentice pilot, or equivalent capacity, standing regular watches at the wheel or in the pilot house, AND
2.360 days of service must be on vessels operating on the class of waters for which pilotage is desired, OR
B.Masters or Mates with licenses over 1600 GRT meet the service requirements.

Along with (Last I heard) 20 ROUND TRIPS of the entire route serviced by the individual assoc. 25% of which must be at night.

This entails contacting pilots, and showing up in person to ride along with them and get a paper signed at the end of the trip, if you get lucky you can catch a ship headed completely through the area.

I know right now they roughly require at least a 4 year degree, better if one in maritime studies and best from a maritime institute.

My father was a NOBRA pilot, so I have a few ‘ins’. I am working on an online degree through UWF in Maritime studies while working on licenses, it’s a long road and a LOT of work, but, I want to see if I can pull it off.


I made a mistake when I first put up my email.

It is Jonathan.Fogarty.2013@usmma.edu