“Minor” Incident Sends Mariner Down S&R Rabbit Hole
The twists and turns of any marine casualty investigation can be unpredictable, but what is predictable is the potentially crushing cost to defend your license, livelihood and professional reputation.It was early afternoon on a late summer day in a busy commercial and fishing port in coastal New England. The captain of an offshore supply vessel was returning to his company’s dock and was lining up to transit past the harbor’s fixed storm mitigation gate when he decided to ‘bail out’ on his approach because the tide was ebbing and the outbound current of approximately two knots was offsetting his vessel to the east. No stranger to these waters…
USCG Seeking SME's for Working Groups
The National Maritime Center is still seeking participants for the three remaining merchant mariner examination working group meetings in 2019.Deck working group – September 10-12Engine working group – October 22-24Deck working group – December 3-5Examination reviews are currently scheduled to take place at the National Maritime Center in Martinsburg, West Virginia. However, dates and locations may change based on the number of attendees.Section 315 of the 2015 Coast Guard Authorization…
Government Shutdown: USCG Update
To mitigate the impact caused by the partial lapse in appropriations and shutdown of National Maritime Center (NMC) operations, the following updated actions are being taken:• Merchant Mariner Credentials (MMC) (National Endorsements only) and Medical Certificates that expire in December 2018, January 2019, or February 2019 are extended as valid until April 30, 2019. Print letter and carry it with your credential.• Additional Information (AI) letters, sent to mariners that expire in December 2018, January 2019, or February 2019 are extended to April 30, 2019.• Approval to Test (ATT) letters and mariner training course certificates that expire in the months of December 2018…
USCG Update – Mitigation Efforts Due to Partial Government Shutdown
To mitigate the impact caused by the partial lapse in appropriations and shutdown of National Maritime Center (NMC) operations, the following actions are being taken:Merchant Mariner Credentials (MMC) (National Endorsements only) and Medical Certificates that expired in December 2018 or expire in January 2019 are extended as valid until March 31, 2019. Print the attached letter and carry it with your credential.Additional Information (AI) letters, sent to mariners that expired in December 2018 or expire in January 2019 are extended to March 31…
Partial Government Shutdown Shutters Coast Guard NMC, REC's
Due to the partial government shutdown, the National Maritime Center (NMC) and all Regional Exam Centers (RECs) are closed until further notice.Customer walk-in service is suspended. Examinations and other REC appointments are cancelled, and REC appointment calendars are closed. Applications may continue to be e-mailed or mailed in and will be processed when the shutdown is over.The following limited operations will be maintained:The Customer Service Center call center is open from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday. You may reach the call center at 1-888-IASKNMC (427-5662) and IASKNMC@uscg.mil.The NMC website will provide…
National Maritime Center Closed Due to Gov't Shutdown
The National Maritime Center (NMC) issued a notice stating it is closed due to the government shutdown. The NMC said it is authorized to maintain a small cadre of personnel to support national defense-related credentialing issues. Maintain the Customer Service Center call center: 1-888-IASKNMC (427-5662) and IASKNMC@uscg.mil will be monitored from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday. Regional Examination Center (REC) and other NMC phone/e-mail addresses will not be monitored. Maintain the NMC website, keeping the industry up to date on its status via the website and all list servers. -Examination appointments are cancelled and must be rescheduled after the shutdown is lifted. Online scheduling is disabled.
MMPAC October 2017 Meeting Set
The Merchant Marine Personnel Advisory Committee (MERPAC) and its working groups are scheduled to meet October 26-27, 2017, at United States Coast Guard National Maritime Center in Martinsburg, WV. Although the meetings are open to the public, attendees must pre-register to be admitted. Additional details about the location, point of contact, how to submit comments, and the agenda can be found in the Federal Register in notice document 82 FR 44433, published on September 22, 2017
Interview: Rear Admiral Paul Thomas, USCG
Rear Admiral Paul Thomas develops and maintains policy, standards and program alignment for waterways management, navigation safety, boating, commercial vessels, ports and facilities, merchant mariner credentialing, vessel documentation, marine casualty investigation, inspection and port state control activities. He serves as the Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy overseeing three Coast Guard directorates: Inspections and Compliance, Marine Transportation Systems, and Commercial Regulations and Standards.
Meet the Maritime Education Standards Council
The Maritime Education Standards Council (MESC) is a coalition of 35 member schools in the U.S. and Canada that offer U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) approved maritime training courses to professional and recreational mariners. The coalition was formed with the aim to safeguard education standards and provide students who utilize MESC schools with a high level of training that meets all USCG guidelines. The organization is comprised of privately owned, public and/or nonprofit maritime education providers that offer national and STCW maritime education…
Insights: Capt. Novotny, Commanding Officer, USCG National Maritime Center
Captain Jeffrey P. Novotny is Commanding Officer of the U.S. Coast Guard’s National Maritime Center in Martinsburg, WV. He is responsible for all activities related to professional credentialing, training and assessments of the nation’s 215,000 merchant mariners. He graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy with a degree in Mathematics and Computer Science. Prior to commanding the NMC, he was the Deputy Commander at the Coast Guard’s Deployable Operations Group. His duties included the oversight and responsibility for all personnel…
Insights: Rear Admiral Paul F. Thomas
Rear Admiral Paul Thomas is the Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy overseeing three Coast Guard directorates: Inspections and Compliance, Marine Transportation Systems, and Commercial Regulations and Standards. The programs include waterways management, navigation and boating safety, ports and facilities, merchant mariner credentialing, vessel documentation, marine casualty investigation, commercial vessel inspections, and port state control. A longtime specialist in Marine Safety…
Transas to Supply TechSim Solutions to SUNY Maritime
The Navsim Services and Transas Americas Team, have been awarded contracts for supply of a combination of full mission, classroom and cloud based Transas Technical simulation (TechSim) solutions for the State University of New York (SUNY) Maritime College. The full mission and classroom systems are being procured to meet forthcoming new United States Coast Guard (USCG) National Maritime Center (NMC) training requirements, and include multiple models from the Transas library with the latest functional capabilities of the Transas TechSim platform.
Mariner’s Medical Certificates – the New Normal
The Maritime Labor Convention of 2006 became effective on 20 August 2013: Are the authorities ready? Consider that MLC 2006 Regulation 1.2-Medical certificate. Standard A1.2 states that “a competent authority shall require prior to beginning work on a ship, seafarer’s hold a valid medical certificate.” Under paragraph 7a of that same regulation it further states that “a medical certificate shall be valid for a maximum period of TWO YEARS.” That requirement also became official for U.S.
From the Editor's Desk
Now clear of the holidays and into an already exciting 2014 on the waterfront, we find ourselves plowing ahead with the proverbial bone in our teeth. That’s because, beyond my questionable nautical metaphor, there are big things happening for the domestic workboat industry in the coming months. As you dig deeper into this issue of MarineNews, you will soon see that much of that revolves around the United States Coast Guard. As you do, look also look for the pace of regulatory rulemaking, boatbuilding and mariner credentialing to increase exponentially.
MMA's Brad Lima Talks Maritime Education and Beyond
Maritime employers, thirsting for quality employees in numbers sufficient to run their far flung businesses, continue to struggle to recruit and retain talent despite lingering high unemployment across the other sectors of the economy. On the waterfront, there are many models for producing marine professionals; some quite new and others, time tested. Brad Lima is the Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy. As a 1974 graduate (BS; marine engineering) of the nation’s oldest continuously operating academy…
USCG Extends Mariner Credentials due to Government Shutdown
The U.S. Coast Guard announced Thursday that mariners whose credentials expire between Oct. 1 and Nov. 30 will receive an extension due to the current lapse in appropriations. The Coast Guard is currently unable to process all mariner credentials in time to ensure that all mariners receive their renewed credentials before their current documents expire. Under the authority of 46 United States Code 7507, the Coast Guard, will be granting extensions to national endorsements until Dec. 31, 2013.
Online and Way Ahead
Calhoon MEBA Engineering School pioneers two more distance learning programs. Where others wonder if it can work, CMES is up and running – miles ahead of the pack. On the heels of its already highly successful Crowd Management Online, and Crisis Management and Human Behavior Online courses – both intended primarily to satisfy STCW training requirements for the cruise and passenger ship sector – the Calhoon MEBA Engineering School has rolled out two new National Maritime Center (NMC) approved Online Deck Officer Course Programs.
NMC Shutdown Advice
The U.S. Coast Guard's National Maritime Center provides advice on the imapct to its missions in the wake of the Government Shutdown. This notice serves to notify the maritime industry that Government has officially shutdown. The National Maritime Center (NMC) is authorized to maintain a very small cadre of personnel to support National Security emergent issues. Maintain the Customer Service Call Center. 888-IASKNMC will be open and monitored from 0800 until 2000 Eastern Time Monday through Friday. REC and NMC phones will not be monitored. Maintain the website.
Insights: Rear Admiral Joseph A. Servidio
Rear Admiral Joseph A. Servidio is Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy overseeing Inspections and Compliance, Marine Transportation Systems, and Commercial Regulations and Standards. Theses directorates include waterways management, navigation and boating safety, commercial vessels, ports and facilities, merchant mariner credentialing, vessel documentation, marine casualty investigation, inspections, and port state control. His previous assignments include numerous postings in marine inspection, marine safety and investigation billets. Servidio is a graduate of the U.
NMC Prepares for Potential Government Shutdown
The U.S. National Maritime Center issued a notice giving precautionary information due to the potential Government shutdown. If the government shutdown occurs, the National Maritime Center (NMC) is authorized to maintain a very small cadre of personnel to support National Security emergent issues. •Push notification via the Website and List Server. •Maintain the Customer Service Call Center. 888-IASKNMC will be open and monitoredfrom 0800 until 2000 Eastern Time Monday through Friday. REC and NMC phones will not be monitored. •Maintain the website. We will attempt to keep the industry up to date on our status via the website. •Regional Exam Centers will be closed. oExam Appointments will be cancelled and must be rescheduled after the shutdown is lifted. Online scheduling will be disabled.
AWO Releases Best Practices on Mariner Credentialing
The American Waterways Operators (AWO), a 350-member trade association representing the nation’s tugboat, towboat and barge industry, has released recommended best practices to assist both companies and mariners in navigating the U.S. Coast Guard’s mariner credentialing and medical review process. AWO compiled the best practices based on feedback from industry members through its Working Group on Mariner Licensing and Medical Standards, as well as input from the Coast Guard’s National Maritime Center (NMC). Among the best practices suggested to companies, AWO recommends gaining familiarity with the Coast Guard credentialing process, designating a representative to interact with employees and the NMC, and offering to review a mariner’s application before it goes to the NMC.
AWO’s Best Practices on Mariner Credentialing
American Waterways Operators (AWO), a 350-member trade association tells members to foster a cooperative relationship with the Coast Guard and to support the mariners, wherever possible. The American Waterways Operators (AWO), the 350-member trade association representing the nation’s tugboat, towboat and barge industry recently released recommended best practices to assist both companies and mariners in navigating the U.S. Coast Guard’s mariner credentialing and medical review process.
Staying Informed of Mariner Licensing Changes
Quick Tips to save time, money, and cut through the red tape. Whether it’s ensuring you’re in compliance with the International Maritime Organization’s major revisions to the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, or keeping up with updates to U.S. Coast Guard policy letters, navigating changes in professional mariner training requirements can be daunting. “But it doesn’t have to be,” said Capt. Guy Sorensen, president of the Virginia-based Chesapeake Marine Training Institute (CMTI).