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The MCA has acknowledged the increasing number of workboats over 24m in load line length by introducing new STCW certificates of competency (CoCs) which will allow deck and engineer officers to work on these vessels without having to hold full merchant navy unlimited certificates.
The new MCA Master (Workboats Less Than 500GT) CoC was introduced in 2013 - details are contained in the M-Notice MGN 496. The Master 500GT CoC builds on the MCA Master 200GT (Code Vessels Less Than 200GT) and the different progression routes are illustrated on the diagram inside this guide.
Candidates meeting the requirements will be issued with a STCW CoC limited to service in workboats of 500GT or less, with an unlimited area of operation. This will be based on the certification requirements for large yachts detailed in MSN 1858.
The following manning scales apply to workboats over 24m and less than 500GT.
Where appropriate, dual deck and assistant engineer roles may be considered, provided that the officer is suitably qualified in both disciplines and that the person holding the dual role is a person other than a Master.
There will also be changes to the engineering qualification. The corresponding M-Notice hasn’t yet been issued, however this is an indication of how the new STCW certification structure will look:
The route for certification is structured to provide a progressive career path for those in the industry to achieve small vessel engineer qualifications and will provide three certification levels:
MIN 524 containing all MCA/SQA exam schedules has been published by the MCA.
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