Towing Question for JD Cavo

A mariner holds a 100 Ton Master, 200 Ton Mate Inland license with a Master of towing Inland restricted to 100/200 Tons. He wants to extend his route to Western Rivers. He also wants to get a Mate of Unlimited tonnage on his Inland and Western Rivers route (once he achieves that route, but at the same time), while holding on to the Master of 100/200 Inland, Master of Towing restricted to 100/200. Basically he is trying to take the classes or tests he needs to extend the route and tonnage limitation at the same time. He will holding on to two licenses. One will be a Master license with the tonnage restriction of 200 Tons with the extended route of Western Rivers and one will be a Mate license of Unlimited tonnage with the extended Western Rivers route also. What will he need to do to get both licenses, can they be done at the same time, and do you have a CFR to back that up?
I sent this question to and haven’t received a response yet :slight_smile:

I just got a headache reading that…

You’re not the only one. After I reduce it to something simple enough for me to understand I’ll try to follow-up. What it takes to get the tonnage limit off of a grandfathered towing vessel license is a subject of frequent discussion at TSAC meetings, and I’m not sure an answer has been decided on.

No kidding!!!

Now while I will not pretend to be as learned as Mr. Cavo. My experience is that a Mariner only holds ONE license. On that license you may have several endorsements. There is NO such thing a unlimited tonnage on the inland waterways. All uninspected towing vessels (with rare exception) are less than 200 gross tons. From what I read in the 46CFR, I see that the person can extend the scope to their license to include western rivers with time on that route. Also with time the same person can up the tonnage of their Masters license. STCW restricts License holders with Masters of Towing Vessels to vessels of less than 200 gross tons. While I hold a Masters of Towing upon Oceans it means nothing. NO other county recognizes this license. To sail foreign you must hold the appropriate tonnage license.

I have several licenses. Four actually, and there is unlimited tonnage inland licenses (mate and master for sure), that also can include the great lakes, which can even be crossed-over to a Master unlimited NC/Oceans provided you had the great lakes to begin with.

Your experience is your truth. Mine is different. I have had 5 issues of a Merchant Marine Officer License. One License with other endorsements on it. As I understand it and I will get the 46CFR number for it. The ranking on areas are, Oceans, Near Coastal, Inland, Western Rivers, and Great Lakes. The Ocean, NC and Great Lakes all carry tonnage greater than 200 for the inspected vessels. If you know of the Unlimited tonnage inland license please pass along the information. I will do a search and be right back.

46CFR10.403 Shows the license structure for deck licenses. While the Great Lakes and NC have tonnage the Towing licenses do not.

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e-CFR Data is current as of January 27, 2009

Title 46: Shipping
Subpart D—Professional Requirements for Deck Officers’ Licenses

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§ 10.403 Structure of deck licenses.

The following diagram illustrates the deck license structure, including cross over points. The section numbers on the diagram refer to the specific requirements applicable.

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[CGD 81–059, 52 FR 38623, Oct. 16, 1987, as amended at 54 FR 136, Jan. 4, 1989; USCG–1999–6224, 64 FR 63226, Nov. 19, 1999; 68 FR 35810, June 17, 2003]

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I’ve sailed recently with 4 captains and mates that hold unlimited inland masters license along with their 1600 ton masters ocean with towing endorsments and unlimited 2nd mates. One had Great Lakes also.

It’s not “My” experience that I’m alluding to. It’s the CFR. You can have a 1600 ton Master, a Chief Mate Unlimited, a Master OSV, and a Master of Towing at the same time. All of which could be stand alone licenses. One does not endorse the next, except for the Master of Towing. You will need a Master of Towing on an unlimited Master License if working in that capacity.
As far an an unlimited inland license, you can look it up…most all on gcaptain know this.
The reason there is no tonnage on a towing license is because there is no need for it. If you are on an unlimited towing vessel, you will need an unlimited license anyway, along with the Master of Towing, but most towing vessels of that size are classed as OSVs, like on the large anchor boats…which is why I have that license as well.

I wanted to know how you were going to answer this. I have come up with what I think is correct, but wanted an answer from someone at the NMC. I appreciate that you will look into this for me.See below:

To extend the route to Western Rivers he would have to:
-Attend a CG approved class or test at the CG.
-Complete a TOAR on the desired route.
-90 days of observation and training (because its Western Rivers)
-Maybe Rules and Navagation General because he was grandfathered in.(tested at the CG REC)

With the above I believe he can apply and get Master of Towing Inland and Western Rivers restricted to 200 GRT.

Then the confusing part comes…The question was how does he get the Western Rivers and Unlimited tonnage Mate at the same time…so I suggested he apply for the Master of Towing IN, WR, restricted to 200 GRT and Mate Unlimited of Towing IN,WR by the following:

-Apprentice Mate CG approved class with one day Western Rivers or test at the CG REC.
-30(90) days of observation and training on the desired route
-Appropriate sea time

My main concern was that this particular person could apply for both licenses at the same time.

Thanks :slight_smile:

I think the “unlimited tonnage” he refers to is getting the 100 Ton limit off of the Master of Towing Vessels, not a license for any gross tons.

I agree fully, I stand corrected.No one that I know that was working on towboats, needing to increase the scope of their license to western rivers ever needed unlimited tonnage as those used to be the OUTV. I had only seen unlimited inland on licenses that were used for the inside passage and not on the typical tug/towboat route.
I did not intend to be misunderstood. Yes there is a Any gross ton license for inland. It is the towing license that I was referring to as not having unlimited tonnage. I should have made myself clearer. 46CFR10.435 describes the unlimited inland license and service requirements.

Correct Mr. Cavo

But the problem is or so I thought is he could only get a MATE Unl. so it would still refer to 2 licenses? Mate Unl. and Master 100/200 Towing with Western Rivers?

Still checking on how to remove the 100 GRT limit ion the towing vessel. It comes up at every TSAC meeting, but I am not sure anyone’s ever given a definitive answer.

Thanks a lot for your time. Seems to be becoming the question for mariners calling Houston Marine Training also :slight_smile: