I recently submitted my completed TOAR and sea service letter along with my STCW gap-closing certificates. I completed the Inland/GL TOAR and my time is a mix of inland (harbor) and near coastal.
There is an interesting footnote in 46 CFR 11.464 (a) that basically says (I’m not reading it) if a mariner is issued a master of towing, he or she may also be issued a mate of towing license for the next superior route (even without experience operating on that route) upon completion of testing.
Reasoning that since I already hold a near coastal license, I had already completed the testing, I also requested Mate of Towing Near Coastal.
It took a brief phone conversation with my evaluator, but I was issued both Master of Towing Inland and Mate of Towing Near Coastal (as well as OICNW 3000 NC Valid on Towing Vessels). The evaluator reiterated what the CFR stated, that upon furnishing proof of 90 days on towing vessels on the Near Coastal route, and completion of the Near Coastal-specific assessments on the TOAR, NMC would issue Master of Towing for that route.
Anyway, I now see a path to Mate and Master of Towing Oceans, should I ever need that.
Just thought I would share in case it’s helpful to anyone else. Maybe lots of folks know about that footnote, but a lot of guys I work with didn’t.
Oh, here’s the relevant citation: https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/46/11.464