Stats on number of current license holders

Years ago, I was able to search, and easily find a document that detailed how many current USCG Licenses were held, from Master AGT (least) to limited Master and OUPV (most). Anybody know where that information is accessable?

Do you have GDPA over there?

I recall that…I think the CG published it as part of a report for MARAD, but man, that was 20(?) years ago?

Some numbers from a post on gCaptain last spring…

Not as detailed as you were looking for, but it is something.

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More digging…

(I had that copy of Proceedings, but it is long gone)

This Maritime Administration has been horrible. They don’t update or post anything. They used to update and post/ list the number and names of all US flag vessels. Not anymore.


If you’re saying that I need to submit a FOIA request, I appreciate the suggestion but I don’t need it that bad. With everything centralized at NMC, that data should be accessible with a couple mouse clicks in 2024.


The license statistics would be useful , or at least interesting to many people and organizations. For example: in assessing whether there is a Mariner shortage, and of what types, and what to do about it. If anything.

Apparently, NMC is trying to hide behind FOIA hassles to keep it a secret that they have very little work to do for a small number of mariners.

Last figures that I saw a few years ago, there were something like 50,000 credentialed mariners. Probably over half of those are in continuity, or people who are not actively sailing and require very little of NMC’s attention. Most of the rest are 100 ton licenses. As I recall there were only something like 5000 active unlimited licenses.

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If a two sentence letter or email is too much trouble, I guess you don’t want it that bad. Posting in this discussion probably took as long.

The data is not available as you might think. The data system that has it was developed in the 90s. That’s why the Coast Guard has started a multi-year project to rep[lace the old system. Why did it take so long? $$$$. They had been trying to get funding for a new system since at least 2007, It was not funded until a year or so ago.

Is everything a conspiracy to you? But you’re right. Only 300 applications per day, one person could handle that before lunch.

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Regardless of any of the above, to see the CG drop the sea day requirements for AB is a sign “some people” way up the MARAD/MSC/gov’t realized we have a shortage of qualified mariners. Manning sealift AND keeping the domestic (rivers/Great Lakes/Gulf/coastwise JA) trades running if the excrement hits the fan will be a challenge.

I requested an incident report that I had been involved in through FOIA. I had a contact in a MSD who pulled it up in MISLE immediately, looked at it, and told me to submit a FOIA to get it. As I recall, it was months, and a couple more emails before I received it.

The CG does many things well, on a shoe string budget. Managing the credentialing of mariners isn’t one of them.

And, while we’re at it, when did everything go to NMC? And they dragged along a 1990 version database all the way to WV?

Even back in the day, each REC could have submitted a monthly report to DC, have a clerk enter it in EXCEL, and post it on a website. They can’t compile that data annually, and post it on the NMC site? I need to submit a FOIA request? Its not like its obscure un-intersting data, right? I mean, it was in Proceedings and MARAD published it.

JD, don’t take this as a personal attack. It’s obviously not. Like you, I’m former active duty CG, and proud of my service. But NMC is awful. Every one of my limited tonnage co-workers has a story. One of the deckhands is over 100 days waiting on a clean, original 100 ton ticket.

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I just talked to the NMC contractors. 24 business days to start looking at a Med Cert renewal application is what I was told. Not to process it, to open it up and start reviewing it. Ridiculous.

A few years ago some big shot in Washington said altogether they have 16K licensed mariners.
In case of emergency, that’s just enough to man all support fleet. But no one to relieve this people when time will come.

RECs transitioned starting in 2006 and ending in 2008. As far as "dragging all the way to WV, it’s called the internet.

Never active duty. Maritime academy, 10 years sailing (tankers).

Sarcasm. Since it’s “the internet”, it should be accessible and not require a FOIA request. Its not secret or protected data…Nor is there any PII to redact.

Not sure why I thought you were active duty. Must have you confused with another CG civilian.

300 applications a day is an interesting statistic. And it didn’t even require a FOIA request to get it.

It’s hidden in plain sight in an obvious location (warning: basic math skills required). Anyone could have found that in half the time spent whining about it not being available.

Every government agency has similar problems.

Look at the computer problems that the IRS has had for decades.

The government has long had a tendency to hire low bidder vendors to build custom systems, rather than use the quality commercial software that corporations use: ORACLE, MICROSOFT, etc. Vendors have scammed the bejesus out the government with over-budget, long overdue, poor quality computer systems.

USCG records for 50,000 mariners might be too much for a spreadsheet like Excel to handle, but a relatively cheap, off the shelf, relational database like Microsoft Access (which has good training and many people already know how to use) would probably do it.

Every government agency has staffing problems. The demographics are that the huge baby boom generation has retired. The working age generations are much smaller. Hence a shortage of workers. They don’t make workers like they used to. There is a different work ethic and less productivity today.

No more civil service exams, so new government hires have less skills and ability than in the past.

Many people have no interest in working in a government job that would interfere with their desire to smoke pot, or require drug testing. Drugs have a huge impact on society and employment, especially government employment.

The government pisses away a lot of money by doing everything inefficiently.

The government is regulating too many things too intensively with unnecessary complexity. The nanny state has grown into a bioengineered monster, because there is money to be made by lobbyists and government contractors in growing it. (Maybe someone could compare the number of pages in the CFR today to 50 years ago.)

There are not enough tax dollars available to support all this big government. Hence ever bigger deficit spending, and $35 Trillion in national debt (with accelerated growth).


5000 unlimited mariners seems way low. It shows how much we are dropping in tonnage. Probably half of that number are upper management licenses.