Master OSV 3000 upgrade to 6000 or 10000


What did he say that makes you think the fishing license is “based on STCW”?


I read “pretty much the same” as “based on”, but maybe you can explain what big differences there are?
As said, to be Master on a large fishing vessel is, if anything, more demanding then on a large merchant ship. Why should the education and training requirements be any less??


I agree with you that fishing is a lot more complex that most people think. Especially, on large fishing vessels with a crew of more than 100 persons. Fishermen deserve a lot more respect than they get.

The US has required licensed officiers for fishing vessels for much longer than STCW has been around. I suspect that it may have started with the Officers Competence Convention and the US Officers Competency Act. I believe that was based on SOLAS and the sinking of the Titantic.

“Similar” or “pretty much the same” or “not much difference” has a different meaning than “based on” or “based upon”.

Similar— means that things are almost the same, or close to being the same, or like each other or almost alike, etc. I’m not quoting a dictionary, I’m giving you the way many Americas would say it, or intend it to be understood.

Based on, or based upon— means that it was developed from, or adapted from, or has it origins in, or came from. Again, that’s not a dictionary definition.

The US has had higher standards than STCW for a long time. I think Norway has too. I don’t see that STCW raises our standards. STCW just formalizes a lot of required training courses, many of which are a waste of time, creates a lot of paper records, most of which are useless, and sets an international minimum standard. Our standard has been higher for a long time, STCW adds little to it.


I do understand the nuances of the English language, even the American verity theroff (mostly). But OK, let that rest.

Yes Norway have had a comprehensive Maritime Education system for many years. For Navigators that used to be three years of schooling, with each year qualifying for different grade of licensing, The final year was to qualify as “Master on vessels of all types, all sizes, in all waters”, given the required seatime.

Coastal and Fishing licenses were different, but most would “go the whole hog” to be able to ambulate between the different types of vessels. (The Master on SS Norway used to take the family’s Purse Seiner out for a trip or two on his time off as his recreation)

When OSVs got into the mix, many were manned by people from the fishing boats who were used to handle their single screw boats with nets hanging over the side in the same North Sea weather. They couldn’t understand all the talk about how difficult it was to handle anchors. Having OSVs like theUT 704s, with twin screws, 7000 Bhp and bow thrusters was heaven for them.

With the introduction of STCW as the minimum standard, the schooling went down to two years. The first year Operational (STCW II/2 3000 GT) and second year Management level. (Unlimited) In addition comes all the special training, depending on the type of vessels they are aiming for.

I’m involved with a Maritime School near here, where they educate people per STCW standard, both for Deck and Engine. Most will go to the Offshore vessels, but many are aiming for the fishing fleet and some even for the ferries and coasters. But they all sit for the same exams which, to my surprise, is very much based on merchant ships, incl. VLCCs and Container ships etc.

Specialized training is given in associated institutions near by, incl. Campus Aalesund of the Norwegian Maritime Competence Centre, where the latest and best of simulators are available.
BTW; It is also where Rolls-Royce and others are developing the future Autonomous ships and other futuristic maritime technology:

And before anybody gets their knickers in a twist; explaining how things are done in Norway is NOT bragging, or anti-American. It is just information for those who want to know about things foreign. Those who don’t can just close the post.


I have worked with Norwegian-Americans that were trained in Norway. Mostly good guys, but a couple of bad apples. My impression is that the Norwegian smaller vessel training is much better than ours. I don’t know about very large ship training, but I expect its about the same as ours. I don’t believe that STCW raised standards in the US or Norway.

The last time I talked to a Transport Canada Inspector, he was of the opinion that STCW had dragged Canadian standards down.


STCW is MINIMUM standard. It only drag the overall standard down if you do not add anything over and above that.


@tugsailor already described to you the differences in wording.

Claiming a license that doesn’t require ANY STCW KSAs be met, either through approved classes or onboard assessments, is “based on STCW” is ludicrous.


You are a few posts behind. We got on to something else. (See posts from 103 onwards)

The Maritime Education and Licensing system in USA and most other countries are different. Taking short courses piecemeal as required for Domestic Licenses and STCW certification is not common in the rest of the world. STCW standard apply for all, except maybe for inland waters.(Rivers, Canals and Lakes) and for smaller Fishing Vessels.

In some countries Special licenses applies for Yachts, but large Yachts and Fishing Vessels will mostly require the same licenses as other vessels, based on tonnage and trade.

The more common Maritime Education system is to attend schools (or “academies” in your terms) for the require Nautical Education to STCW standard, or above.

Since there are few jobs available as “Ratings” in most developed countries, a system of “Apprenticeship” or as “Cadets” are established to earn seatime as required to obtain the first license.

Additional short courses and training, depending on requirement for the type of vessel and trade each individual wants to pursue are available from private and public institutions.
Many of those are mandatory and need to be repeated at prescribed intervals. (This also apply for US Domestic licenses, I believe?)


I read all the posts before commenting.

That’s definitely a problem in a system where companies are allowed to hire inexpensive foreign labor.


Yes, just like the American Owners, most Shipowners in other high cost country register their ship where they can hire qualified crews cheaper.

The difference is that some Owners take on apprentices and cadets to to ensure a future supply of qualified Officers. For ships under national flag the Maritime Authorities can mandate that a certain number of such positions be made available.

Even the hard pressed Offshore Vessel Owners are taking on apprentices and cadets.
Maritime professionals will still be needed, even if some ships become crewless. It’s called future planning.


I started as an OS in those “oil and mineral” days, 1978. I was one of the good ones which meant I worked on uninspected supply boats and “flew solo” on my wheel watches. Most of the captains had 300 ton licenses but a few had no license whatsoever. One particular captain had a radar endorsement which got him 500 tons. He thought he was badass.

Later, when I got my AB ticket, I worked on the Moon Tide. Those guys had 1,000 Ton freight and towing licenses.


Seems like this is what we have been talking about in a recent thread


I never sailed on the SUN TIDE or MOON TIDE, But I worked off the same dock as one of them (not in the Gulf). It was run by Capt. Ed from NY; I later sailed with him at a different company. These were impressive boats. Back in those days 1000 GRT was the breakpoint for an unlimited license.

I also use to see the BIEHL TRADER or BIEHL TRAVELER around. They were owned by the US branch of a Dutch company, something like 1200 GRT, and therefore they were fully crewed with unlimited license guys.


The boat itself was pretty cool, but I didn’t like it much. After being the de facto mate on uninspected vessels, the Moon Tide had us in the role of chambermaid peons. Years later, during a summer break from school, I was again briefly assigned to it. It wasn’t any better.