Master of towing near coastal

i have a master of towing vessels for great lakes inland and western rivers and there is no tonnage restriction. i have recently added master of towing vessels near coastal onto my license and was told by a couple sources that i am actually limited to 200 ton vessels. just wondering if any one know if this is true of if near coastal is same as the other routes in that there is no tonnage restriction???
any info would be greatly appreciated thanks

Master of Towing Vessels is good for any tonnage inland and western rivers, up to 300 GRT near coastal and oceans.

i was also told this by a couple sources like i had said. forgot to mention i talked to the nmc and they said that no there is no tonnage restriction of 300 grt. now I’m confused

Yes. There is a tonnage restriction near coastal. We could debate about whether it’s 200 or 300 tons, but that really does not matter much anymore with STCW.

US Vessels under 200 GRT are exempt from STCW off the US coast. They may not be exempt from STCW anywhere else, except for US tugs in Canadian waters.

A US license as Master Of Towing Near Coastal or Oceans (usually does not have any stated tonnage limit), but it is limited by law to either a maximum of 200 or 300 GRT. However, unless a Mariner also has all the STCW endorsements to go with it, he is limited to vessels under 200 GRT on most near coastal waters.

In effect, your near coastal license is limited to 200 GRT.

excuse my ignorance because all the licensing and tonnage mumbo jumbo is over my head. but when i was told that id be restricted to 200 ton i applied for 1600 ton master of towing near coastal, i received a letter and then called the nmc who told me that there is no such thing as a 1600 ton master of near coastal and that since i now have the master of towing near coastal that i needn’t test for 1600 since i have no tonnage restriction.
does that sound goofy or am i not understanding

I think your participation in the writing of the rules and knowledge of what was intended affects your legal interpretation. The Officer’s Competency Act clearly states a limit of 200 GRT and we’ve established before that Towing and OSV licenses don’t fall under that Act. You’ve never been able to provide a source for why you always say 300 GRT other than, “that was our intent when we made the towing licenses.”

There’s no such thing as a 1,600 ton master of towing near coastal. Towing licenses are issued without tonnage limit, except for some old grandfathered ones, but you are required to also have a non trade restricted license to work on boats over a certain tonnage (200 GRT) on near coastal waters. You are also required to have STCW officer endorsements that cover the tonnage of the boat you’re on once you go outside the boundary line.

i got ya. all the stcw and offshore stuff is new to me. so then how do would one qualify to work on vessels over the tonnage restriction and how is that stated on your license??

Apply for a license of 500 or 1,600 tons upon near coastal waters. You’ll need time on vessels on near coastal waters though so for you go to work on tugs under 200 GRT with just your towing license until you get the time. Most tugs are under that tonnage cutoff so you should be fine.

  1. there are two separate sections of the MMC, the STCW section and the Domestic section.

  2. here is a section of the domestic second of my MMC to illustrate how the different licenses are represented.

it reads as master of towing vessels upon great lakes, inland, western rivers and near coastal.
also master of self propelled vessels of not more then 200 gross tons.
i did apply for master of 1600 ton near coastal and was approved for that, just haven’t tested yet

95% of the coastal and ocean tugs are under 200 GRT, and no STCW required, so your present license covers them.

Some tug companies prefer or require Master 1600, so it’s worth testing for it.

However, I don’t recommend getting all the STCW, unless you really think you need it. A lot of tug companies require one $800 STCW course, BT. The rest of the STCW courses cost a total of around $30,000 with travel and hotels.

The tug companies won’t pay you anything extra for getting all the STCW.

You should definitely test for that, especially if it’s near coastal. If whatever company you ultimately work for wants you to have STCW they’ll hopefully pay for it.