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Is the yacht certification system developing people correctly?
Kulta
Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2010 1:32 PM
Joined: 02/11/2009
Posts: 79


I don’t understand why the white list is ignored either? My qualifications where not immediately recognized by the MCA. My CoC was completed in Australia at the Australian Maritime College and every section of my course was STCW95. The apprenticeship and seatime I completed was done in Australia under a system that followed the system used in the UK. The whole objective of STCW78 and STCW95 is to have an international standard for training and watch keeping. The subject of MCA qualifications has four idiosyncrasies: 1. Slow processing times for certificates of equivalency The certificate of equivalency process takes 60 days or more (the Cayman Islands takes no more than 21 days) 2. Manning tables are not enforced or regulated What is the point of a manning table if it is not required on private vessels and very rarely checked on commercial yachts? 3. Manning table requirements are regularly reduced when sailing within 60 nm Why offer reduced manning tables if the normal cruising area is within 60 nm? I can assure you near coastal waters are congested with small boat traffic and shallow water. Problems are no larger or smaller when your close to shore and engineers don’t become more able to solve problems when they are closer to land. If your on a large yacht offshore or along side the experiance and qualifications should be the same. Tonnage, Kilowatts and responsibility is measured the scope of skill needed to manage the vessel under your command. 4. Seatime recording and validation Actual sea days for the majority of yachts is 60 days and accumulating real experience as navigators and engineers should be more closely scrutinized, because I find it difficult to believe a person in yachting with 24 months employment has 24 months seatime. Conclusion At the end of the day its about insurance and the risks people are prepared to take. Clearly the MCA have marketed themselves very well and created a niche for themselves in the maritime world. But at the very same time they have failed to deliver an adequeat provisions to ensure there will be enough qualified crew in the future. Yachting and/or the MCA need to police their own backyard and ensure the people they deem competent have sufficient practical experiance AT SEA and start to represent the qualifed people that made the effort to become qualified in the first place. Is yachting prepared to allow un-qualified crew continue to work as officers and also ignore qualified people outside the Y tickets? I made the effort to get qualified in Australia and go through with the process of reconition with the Cayman Islands and MCA.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2010 2:14 PM
For someone that claims that they are so qualified why would you post that your boss has a (GUEST) on board.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2010 3:19 PM
get a clue mate, you have no idea what you are talking about..
Henning
Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2010 9:18 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Two points to address. Your Aussie ticket wasn't recognized because your government didn't want to participate in reciprocal recognition, it's purely political and the Aussies created the issue, so whinge to your MP.

Reduced manning is for near shore runs (some countries give a voyage length in NM or Days) is because on short runs you won't need 3 full watches to be safe.

Anonymous
Posted: Friday, March 19, 2010 6:05 PM
what are you on? havent you got any work to do? you have got an opinion on bloody everything havent you?
Lori
Posted: Friday, March 19, 2010 8:19 PM
Joined: 19/01/2009
Posts: 11



Anonymous:

Has it ever occurred to you that perhaps Henning has honed excellent time management skills, therefore, he can take the time to commit his input to these blogs???  Yet, I have also seen Henning on many blogs in Dockwalk . . . . I not only found him to be quite insightful, but also right on the money!!!  

Perhaps you're just envious of his knowledge.  I appreciate it when someone actually knows (on a consistent basis) what they're talking about.

Thanks Henning for your past, present and future input . . . . keep it coming  !!!!!

Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, March 20, 2010 6:56 AM
Sorry Lori, I didnt make it clear that it is Kulta that I was replying to. I too find Henning to be clear and relevant in his posts.
Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, March 20, 2010 5:12 PM
One thing that appears to be constant is the aggressive reation un-qualified and under-qualified people have when you talk about qualifications. I am usually the one that replaces your lazy ass when you leave a yacht. Just once I'd like to come in for a relief job and see things in order. The overall standard of engine rooms operated and maintained by so called engineers is horrific.
Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, March 20, 2010 10:16 PM
Sadly, it's what you get with rinky dinky schooling and yachtmasters par excellence, but the yachting world seems content with MCA/RYA hacks running the show. I submit there is not a grander show on earth run by snake charmers and snake oil vendors! What I never did get though, is that the owners never seem to really see who is driving their boats. They could get whoever, whatever ,whenever they wanted if they forked out, and they do! But they still go with the abercrombie and fitch 500 tonner yachtie guy with wavy hair and a liking for watersports. I have seen so many polo shirt idiots running boats that I wonder what kind of reservation they come from? Sailors? Naah, poster boys? Perhaps!
Cap'n C
Posted: Saturday, March 20, 2010 10:18 PM
Joined: 29/04/2009
Posts: 38


Sad, but true. But it is the way of a cruel, cruel world, get over it!
Henning
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 5:39 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


The main thing I have concerns with is the "Yachtmaster" being used as a way to qualify deckhands. The yacht system seems to be missing the AB, Able Bodied Seaman. In the US you can sit an AB test (there are several levels) with 120 days of seatime (or there abouts depending on which AB rating one sits for). The rating test is a mixed bag of Rules of the Road, Nav General and Deck General questions. Knot tying is a section which has come and gone and reappeared over the years, I don't know where that stands now. With an AB rating, I can leave you on watch unsupervised. Being able to hold a license serve as Master with next to no actual experience at sea isn't a particularly good thing, yet many even green deckhands are acquiring the Yachtmaster certificate because so many boats are looking for it as a requirement for being a deckhand when in fact an AB rating would fill the requirements they are actually looking for.

junior
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 7:14 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


You guys always forget that the yacht industry is not professional and relies on young people filling a gap year or out to see the world for a few years, as crew. A young college graduate simply will not put up with the seatime requirements of the USCG commercial rating before taking a summer job. This is why you never see American yacht crew working the international scene. Too much hassle to acquire a ticket enabling you to push a squeegee or launch a jet ski. These young yachtmasters make good crew and many times the only crew available.. If you have any problems with this system blame yacht owners, agents and captains who operate commercial yachts but fail to value skilled crew with relevant tickets. Why criticise the Yachtmaster system...it serves a valuable service to yachts.
Henning
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 7:37 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


junior wrote:
You guys always forget that the yacht industry is not professional and relies on young people filling a gap year or out to see the world for a few years, as crew. A young college graduate simply will not put up with the seatime requirements of the USCG commercial rating before taking a summer job. This is why you never see American yacht crew working the international scene. Too much hassle to acquire a ticket that enables you to push a squeegee or launch a jet ski. These young yachtmasters make good crew and many timesthe only crew available.. If you have any problems with this system blame yacht owners, agents and captains who opertate commercial yachts but fail to value skilled crew with relevant tickets. Why criticise the Yachtmaster system...it serves a valuable service to yachts.


===============================================================================

Well, the kid doing a summer job as an entry level deckhand doesn't require any qualification. He is basically an OS, Ordinary Seaman. All they need is STCW Basic. It's not the summer job people that are the concern. It's the "next step up" from the green deckhand that is the issue. In the yacht industry, the next step up is a masters certification that does not require or provide the experience level to actually serve as master.  With larger yachts you have OOW and that's fair enough, but I think AB would be of real value. It would allow a level of certification commiserate with the level of experience and at a much much much lower cost level to the candidate (and risk of failure) who is now seeking certification far above his or her capabilities and knowledge base. I'm not particularly against the Yachtmaster per se, I'm against how it is being used.

junior
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 8:30 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Many things would be nice. I don't see it happening. Simply look at the Northern Hemisphere yacht fleet. At present when I Look down the dock see eleven 25 to 30 meter yachts....empty of crew....under management supervision. On April 15 these yachts come to life, hire captain,deckie,stew and cook and off they go until Oct 15 when it ends...no crew...back to management. How would you convince a young crew to improve qualifications, become more professional , only to be faced with this seasonal work schedule reality ?
junior
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 8:35 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Additionally, when you go seatime intensive you will lockout the best yacht crew. The good guys around here only generate maybe 50 seadays a year...BUT...when they are laidoff they stay in the yacht industry , working for subcontraactors fixing watermakers or pulling props ..... during the winter work cycle. This is very valuable knowledge for a good crew....but generates zero seatime. They become non competitive with paper tickets guys who were fortunate to keep their job, chained to the dock. . Who would you hire ? The yachtmaster, low seatime guy, with two winters working for the Yamaha dealer winterizing Yacht ribs or the yachtie who sat in the crew mess gaining seatime in front of the tv then attending yacht courses in their spare time.
Henning
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 9:17 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


There's no reason not to award partial credit for ancillary duties. Even the US system currently allows for that on license renewals. I just don't think that a few weeks in class along with a few days on a boat split with half a dozen other candidates is sufficient experience for churning out "masters". IIRC the whole yachtmaster system was developed for certifying owner operators, not professional operators. And while you're looking at a whole fleet sitting there half the year, there's another fleet that operates year round.

As for"The yachtmaster, low seatime guy, with two winters working for the Yamaha dealer winterizing Yacht ribs or the yachtie who sat in the crew mess gaining seatime in front of the tv then attending yacht courses in their spare time.", NEITHER of them is ready for the responsibility of Master. Just because you can winterize an outboard does not give you the qualifications of a master. Master means exactly that, you have mastered the job. How does winterizing outboards, one small aspect of boating, meet that standard? You need to know all of it, not just a few bits and pieces, and you only get there with experience, the question is," how much experience is enough?"

junior
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 10:30 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


yes indeed...the yachtmaster was intended to certify amateurs to operate in a seaman like manner. If an owner chooses to hire a yachtmaster for higher level demands ,this is the fault of he owner...not the yachtmaster system. Operating 25 meter sunseekers on the summer entertainment industry milk run is not a demanding position. The only way to fill these summer positions is with Yachtmasters on the earn while you learn routine.
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 11:05 AM
People should also realize there are plenty of newbie's that fail their yachtmaster and MCA OOW course units. This industry picks kids out of school that would not normaly work on the sea, washing down a yacht and then a few beers after work is not the way to learn. The majority of new crew have a sense of intitlement that exceeds their worth. Ego's and bravado won't help you when the pressure in on, but experiance, teamwork, leadership and skill will.
Henning
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 11:52 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Lets compare it to the aviation industry. You have Private Pilot (requires 40 hrs minimum flight time, a written, oral and practical exam), Commercial Pilot ( 250hrs, again the written, oral and practical) and Airline Transport Pilot (1500hrs and the exams). Yachtmaster training and skill level as well as intent is akin to the Private rating, and a Commercial grade license is akin to an ATP. What is lacking is that CPL mid level rating which is where you can start being paid to fly. In aviation, no compensation allowed for a PP, yet in the maritime world we are allowing that level of licensing to be used as a commercial standard, and it's just a bit too low, and we see the results in accidents and poor decision making all the time. You say too bad for the owner, it's his own fault, and on that level I agree. However, it's the ancillary damage and injuries to other parties that are of a different matter. A young and green crew getting on a boat should be able to expect that their captain knows how to keep them safe and make good decisions. That statement is doubly true of the owners guests, and infinitely truer for a paying charter client. It took "The Day the Music Died" for the aviation world to really take this seriously. Who do you think has to die before the yacht industry does?

junior
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 12:44 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Hopefully the change is that the Americans wake up and devise a yactmaster type scheme that gets beginner American crew up and running small yachts fast. You can only ever acquire quality sea time, command time by running a small yacht....never by cleaning windows on a mega for 720 days as the USCG requires.. A yachtmaster with 3 or four years actually running an introductory yachts will be a much superior seaman, have the financial firepower in his pocket and useful references from past service to pursue further education. If this crew wants to move up the yacht size ladder he will naturally pursue the conventional commercial tickets. At this moment are two motoryachts in the marina..20 and 22 meter trawler type seasonal charter boats who need to hire summer captains. No contracts, no rent a car, no free dental care , 250 euro a day when on charter , 12 euruo an hour when in maintaence mode. Only young yachtmasters will take these positions. Very valuable work experience that beginner Americans cant participate in becuase of the clumsy USCG seatime system .
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 4:49 PM
The volley between Henning and junior here is why I enjoy reading the forums. Two guys fighting the same battle from different sides of the fence. The topic is real, does affect all and brings to light valid points, from both sides. Keep the fodder flyin over the rails!
Henning
Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 10:05 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Thing is, the US isn't highly inclined to change the system. The size boats you're speaking of and flying a US flag are typically private vessels requiring no certification to operate until it is hired out on charter. What the US did was raise the tonnage of the OUPV license to 100 ton. If you are going to be responsible for a larger vessel  and/or with more than 6 passengers for hire, you need a full license. The USCG doesn't really have an allowance for a "commercial yacht" beyond that of the Uninspected Passenger Vessel, and for that they issue the OUPV license with 360 days experience, and you can count any day you were out on a boat that you didn't pay for since the age of 14 regardless what you were doing, so it's really not that difficult to get seatime together. As for a private yacht, again, no requirement for certification at all is required and is where a lot of people get their time in.

Marc
Posted: Wednesday, April 7, 2010 11:57 AM
Joined: 03/07/2009
Posts: 4


Well, I have been in this industry for a few years now myself but this is the first time that I have felt compelled to join the discussion.  As always, Henning is right on the button with his comments, thank you.  I agree that there is definitley a need for an AB ticket but surely that is what the yacht rating qualification is all about.  I believe too many captains/crew agents do not unserstand or even know this ticket exists.  It covers basic semanaship, knots, deck and watch duties, is STCW95 compliant and makes a good stepping stone between STCW95 Basic Safety Training and Yactmaster Offshore. 
I do however have a problem with the YM ticket.  This can be taken by any person with 2500 miles at sea, and no requirement for minimum time served (one Atlantic crossing).  Once qualified, this person can now get commercially endorsed and this is a 200T Master ticket.  However, should you spend 3 years signed on and have at least 1 year of that as sea time AND hold a YM Offshore, you can take the OOW which also qualifies as a Master 200T - which of these two candidates would you prefer?  I think YM tickets should not be available for commercial endorsement because the level of training is no where near that of OOW.  If an owner keeps his vessel privately registered, the law does not require any qualification to drive and it is usually the insurance company that will want some formal qualification.  Until the MCA decide that 24m and above, regardless of private or commercial registry, needs qualified crew, this is something we must live with. 

Anonymous
Posted: Friday, April 9, 2010 4:17 AM
Everyone needs to remember that the MCA (Y) licenses are not STCW compliant. They are equivalencies defined by the UK for their yachts only. That is why MCA (Y) holders cannot use their tickets on non-yachts. It is absolutely ridiculous to think that a kid with only 50 days and 2,500 nautical miles can obtain a "Master's" license, yet a deck rating, unlicensed Able Seaman requires at least 360 days at sea. Do you know what 50 days and 2,500 nautical miles qualifies you for under the STCW? NOTHING.
Anonymous
Posted: Monday, March 28, 2011 8:20 PM
Agreed, people are not being developed correctly. It's a money making business by the people regulating it. Modules are structured in such a way that kids can learn them verbatim and pass and show the ticket or piece of paper they require, gone are the days of able seaman and seamanship. I have just experienced it first hand again seeing 20 something year old kids with no seatime or experience being issued OOW tickets, while genuine seaman with a few hundred thousand sea miles who you can trust your life with at sea in any circumstances, can't get these qualifications because of learning and studying disabilities.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, March 29, 2011 5:03 AM
Now I'm worried, I'm only 20 years old but my Dad is a Captain and Ive been involve in the industry since I was a little kid. I really want to start a career on the industry and I have taken the entry level tickets. What other tranning do you recommend me? I want learn as much as I can!



Chief
Posted: Tuesday, March 29, 2011 4:50 PM
Joined: 02/06/2008
Posts: 341


"Everyone needs to remember that the MCA (Y) licenses are not STCW compliant. They are equivalencies defined by the UK for their yachts only."

 

But for some strange reason, the IMO allows the MCA to append an STCW code to those pseudo tickets so that they appear to be equivalent to a maritime license. Why is this is allowed without even requiring a simple (Y) behind the code?

 

Unfortunately it leads many to believe that there is an equivalency between those tickets and real licenses and that is what leads to the questions we often see here about progressing to unlimited vessels. It is a shame really, since the (Y) tickets aren't even recognized for inshore or coastal commerical work. This is similar to what the oil company contractors created in the US Gulf of Mexico years ago.

 

They bought off the USCG to create an "in house" licensing system that channeled narrowly qualified people into a job market from which they were not certificated to move beyond. It locked many people into a dead end career with only a very few employers. At least now with STCW, the USCG license offers a means for lower level license holders to progress in the maritime industry, albeit at a great cost in time and money.


MarineDex
Posted: Wednesday, March 30, 2011 8:44 AM
Joined: 22/04/2010
Posts: 45


I'm reading all these interesting posts about qualifications, Yachtsmaster, able body seamen etc. and thinking to myself is that they are correct the qualification structure doesn't balance to time at sea and experience.

However the topic was about Australia tickets, so here is some advice that I found the hard way; most if not all your qualification in Australia are not recognised in different states of Australia, as I’m sure you know. They are run by the DOT department of Transport in each state, but are STCW95 which makes the recognised by IMO when you do your DOT transfer. However to get the transfer you take your tickets into AMSA and give them some photos a couple hundred dollars and bingo IMO tickets which have to be recognised by MCA.

Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, March 30, 2011 8:58 AM
In my humble opinion, i think  it´s better to start with a merchant or a rating from a white list country. With a compliant STCW endorsement you won´t have a problem to work on board private vessels or commercial vessels, or any cruise line,cargo... With the new IMO manila amendments (entering 2012-2017), yachting qualifications won´t be accepted by the majority of flags or  commercial yachts. As a Captain on a commercial yacht , i only accept endorsements issued by an administration(country) of the white list  and not from a private school .It´s not because it´s recognized by the MCA that your qualification complies with stcw code!!
Yes, today you can work with your yacht qualification, but  Europe is every day more strict with maritime laws, 5 years ago ,yacht endorsements were accepted from all countries.Today , Italy, France , Spain, Greece and many others don´t accept them as valid stcw.  If you have a maritime qualification issued by a country according to STCW you´ll have no problems in the future to work.


 
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