Question: Coast Guard to eliminate licensing loophole on certain offshore vessels?

Today’s MITAGS newsletter discussed some Proposed Amendments by the US coast Guard. One of interest to our offshore readers is:
•Eliminate the loophole that allows certain mineral and oil industry vessels to operate without a license or document holder.

Does anyone have specifics regarding which vessels they are talking about?

Here’s the MITAGS article:
MERPAC Update - Proposed Amendments to USCG 2008

They might be referring to the foreign flagged rigs now coming into the gulf that don’t require licensed operators.

It may be the crew boats that are uninspected because they’re owned by an oil company. You only have to be inspected and have a COI if you carry cargo or passengers for hire. If you carry your own crew and supplies, it’s not for hire.
I’ve seen these crew boats in Freshwater City. Construction companies all over use the same loophole to get their dump trucks, cranes, and labor to island worksites.

What about the real loophole? The one that lets mates working “12 hour watches” offshore get time and a half on their license while getting underway just a few time each year! I know of one classmate who got his captain’s license before I got my second mate’s license and the guy is clueless. He hasn’t been into port – any port – more than a half dozen times. One captain in his company has not done a single trans-Atlantic voyage, I don’t think he’s made it as far as South America!!

Fuckin BS

The loophole isn’t “12 hour watches” getting time and a half. The loophole is the people getting screwed with only1 day of seatime for 12 hours on watch with 4 hours overtime under the traditional 3 watch system because verbage on the COI. Its a contradiction in terms. The Maritime Unions never stepped up to the plate on that one.
What does a trans-Atlantic voyage and South America have to do with being a Captain? Last I checked, you could be a good Captain in the North Pacific.

Holding a license does not make one a captain.
But really it sounds like jealousy on our guests part.
If going in to port makes one a captain then there are a whole lot of unlimited masters that should not be called that because using that rational if you cant drive the vessel in yourself and have to hire a pilot then you’re not a captain.
Under the rational that one must cross an ocean I am not a captain because I’ve never crossed one, hell the farthest I’ve ever gone is 180 miles offshore. All I hold is a 100 ton master near costal, and all my sea time is 12 hour days.
I’ve seen this general rant many times from the blue water guys and it’s really starting to piss me off. We all have different skill sets. I make no illusions about my ability to cross an ocean, or deal with the different protocols for entering a foreign port. But lets see you strictly blue water guys bow up in the current and wind and back load a deck full of full cutting boxes using a slow block on a crew boat, Push a 6 pack of barges up the ICW in socked in fog, pilot a ship into port, or a myriad of other things that take different skill sets to accomplish. That’s what I love about this industry is that one can take so many different directions and there’s always something else to learn.

As for the original poster, I think that’s a good decision to make the company owned boats get a licensed person on board. One has to wonder how many people died because Joe Blow off the street was behind the wheel.

I won’t comment on the types of experience but a ship is a ship whether it’s a tanker or a drillship they should get the same seatime. The fact that one can get a license faster than the other is BS… in my opinion. Anchorman is right, the verbiage is the problem. Either give it to everyone who works 12 hrs or give it to no one.

John you need to delete this thread before it fucks all of us!

Jemplayer. I am the first guest and I have no doubts about your shiphandling skills but your 1st trip in Winter North Atlantic should not be as Captain just like my first trip into Fouchon shouldn’t be behind your wheel. Never being more than one thousand miles offshore doesn’t mean you’re not an awesome captain and it doesn’t mean you should never cross the Atlantic I just hope you try it a few times before you are put in charge of the human lives. You had better believe I’m going to have a good captain watching over me the first time I load a deck “bow up in the current and wind” with seaman’s lives at risk.

Your point about the pilot troubles me. You hire a pilot as a local advisor not to take command of your vessel but I agree there are “a whole lot of captains who should not be called that” and that’s the reason the Cosco Busan ran into the bridge last year.

My concern is these guys get these jobs and when it’s time to do something they have no experience doing like ocean transits or port maneuvers they never opt out. Instead they roll the dice and hope the pilot, weather router, port captain gives them good advice.

So get off your High Horse this isn’t a Blue vs Brown water debate. It’s about people putting other’s lives as risk by doing shit they have never done before because the coast guard’s minimum standards say it’s ok and they are too arrogant and full of pride to admit they need help.