Wheelhouse Weekly – April 11, 2017

April 11th 2017

Volume 22…Number 15…April 11, 2017


In This Issue:

Job Opportunity:

MM&P Member News:

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A bipartisan group of 76 members of the House of Representatives have urged their colleagues to approve full funding for the Maritime Security Program (MSP) in Fiscal Year 2018.

The effort, led by the chairman and ranking member of the House Seapower Subcommittee, Congressmen Rob Wittman (R-Va.) and Joe Courtney (D-Conn.), supports the full $300 million for MSP that has previously been authorized by Congress.

In their statement, the representatives call MSP “a vital component of our military and strategic sealift and global response capability.”

The program, they wrote, “is designed to ensure that the United States has U.S.-flag commercial sealift capability and trained U.S. citizen merchant mariners available in times of war or national emergencies… MSP also ensures that the U.S. can provide our troops overseas with the supplies and equipment necessary to do their job on behalf of our nation.”

A similar bipartisan effort is underway in the U.S. Senate, where it is being led by the chairman of the Senate Seapower Subcommittee, Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.).

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The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced last week that it had reached a $10 million settlement agreement with a company that in 2011 used a Chinese ship to transport a jack-up oil rig part way from the Gulf of Mexico to Cook Inlet, Alaska.

A spokesperson for DOJ said the penalty was the largest ever assessed by the government for a Jones Act violation.

Under the terms of America’s cabotage law, the rig should have been transported by a U.S.-flagged, U.S.-crewed vessel.

“Resolution of this case demonstrates that the Jones Act will be actively enforced and that an intentional violation will not be rewarded,” the agency said in an official statement.

The story began when managers at Escopeta Oil decided to transport the jack-up rig from the Gulf of Mexico to upper Cook Inlet for exploration work.

Instead of hauling it all the way by tugboat, the company chartered a Chinese heavy-lift ship, the KANG SHENG KOU, to bring it around South America and up to Vancouver, where U.S.-flagged tugs took it in tow for the remainder of the voyage to Alaska.

The company had obtained a Jones Act waiver for the passage during the George W. Bush administration but had failed to make the trip during the period of validity of the waiver.

After the waiver expired, the Department of Homeland Security under the Obama administration refused to renew it.

The company moved the rig any way in 2011.

U.S. Customs and Border Patrol charged it with a violation, assessing a civil penalty of $15 million on an affiliate, Furie Operating Alaska LLC.

Last week’s settlement resolves a civil lawsuit filed by Furie in 2012 challenging the assessment of the civil penalty.

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The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) Cabotage Task Force has condemned as “unbelievable” the fines levied by Australia’s “Fair Work Ombudsman” against crewmembers of the MV PORTLAND.

The five-person crew was forcibly removed from the ship in January 2016 after the government issued a waiver of Australia’s cabotage law allowing it to operate instead with foreign crew sourced from low-wage countries.

“This is shameful, unbelievable news,” said ITF Cabotage Task Force Chair James Given.

“These men were defending their jobs when they were ejected from the ship that was their workplace in a dawn raid. Pursuing them in the court literally adds insult to injury.”

“These hardworking Australian seafarers have been replaced by flag-of-convenience shipping which pays exploited foreign workers as little as $2 an hour and registers ships in places like Liberia, Mongolia and Panama as part of one of the biggest tax avoidance scams on the planet,” said ITF President Paddy Crumlin.

“One of the replacement vessels for the MV PORTLAND even got busted for paying bribes in Nigeria and Argentina,” he added.

“What is going on here?”

The Australians had refused to sail the ship to Singapore where it was to be turned over to the new crew.

They were woken up at 0100 on the morning of Jan. 13, 2016 by security guards, marched off the ship and dumped on the Portland, Victoria, wharf.

The government agency pressing the claim is now asking for $10,800 in fines from each one.

None of the workers has been able to find stable employment in the intervening year, according to the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA).

The government has also levied a fine of $54,000 on the MUA in relation to the case and has ordered it to pay $500,000 to the ship’s owner, Alcoa.

Before the incident, Australian mariners had operated the vessel in the country’s domestic trades for almost three decades.

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After a multi-year lull, attacks by Somali pirates have begun occurring with increasing frequency in recent months.

Somali security forces on April 10 obtained the release of a hijacked Indian cargo dhow, but when the pirates fled, they took 11 members of the crew with them as hostages.

Also at the beginning of last week, pirates hijacked a Pakistani vessel, SALAMA 1, and a cargo ship, MV OS-35.

The officers and crew of the cargo vessel took refuge in the safe room. The pirates fled after a Chinese navy vessel and an Indian navy helicopter arrived on the scene.

The number of attacks by Somali pirates rose to a high of 237 in 2012. It dropped after shipowners increased security and international naval forces boosted operations in the area.

After the long period of calm, some ship owners are trying to save money by reducing security and trying new routes that take them closer to land.

After the long period of calm off the Horn of Africa, experts say these changes are responsible in part for the upswing in attacks.

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The National Maritime Center has a permanent position available in Martinsburg, W. Va., for a person with shipboard deck officer background to serve as the primary coordinator and subject matter expert for the development and revision of deck officer and rating examinations.

For more information and to apply, go to the USA Jobs website and search for announcement numbers 17-1411-SE-BK-D and 17-1411-SE-BK-M.

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New requirements will soon be introduced for officers sailing as extended Second Mate and new relief Chief Mate on all MLL vessels.

To respond to the new requirements, MITAGS is developing a BETA course that will be offered in the coming months.

The BETA course will consist of one week of general training followed by one week of company-specific training.

Details of the new course will be posted in the coming days in the Members’ Only pages of

If you are interested in signing up for the BETA course, please contact your MM&P Area Vice President or the MITAGS Admissions Office.

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Space is still available in the Tankerman Person-in-Charge (TPIC) classes scheduled at MITAGS for the weeks of May 8 and Aug. 17.

Members interested in sailing on liquid bulk vessels are encouraged to take this course.

If you are interested in signing up for either of the week-long courses, please contact Amanda Meadows, admissions coordinator, toll-free at 866-656-5568 or by e-mail:

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The Shipping Rules/Work Rules Ballot has been mailed.

The ballots must be received by 0900 on Thursday, June 8, 2017.

If you do not receive a ballot, or if you lose or destroy your ballot, you may request a duplicate ballot by contacting MM&P Headquarters in writing by e-mail, fax or letter addressed to:

Star Dorsey
700 Maritime Blvd., Suite B
Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953

Fax (410) 850-0973

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The MM&P United Inland Group-Pacific Maritime Region (UIG-PMR) will hold a General Membership Meeting on Tuesday, April 18, at the new union office in Tukwila.

Due to our sharing space with the MM&P Offshore Group which operates as a hiring hall, the UIG-PMR meeting will commence at 1230 in the afternoon after the 1100 job call for the Offshore Group.

Feel free to arrive early and check out the new office and the Offshore hiring hall process.

The address for the MM&P hall is:

15208 52nd Ave. South
Suite 100
Seattle, WA 98188

The hall is located literally about 30 seconds off I-5.

We have not held a general meeting in quite a while.

Please plan to attend if you are available. We look forward to seeing you.

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There will be an Offshore membership meeting in the MM&P Seattle union hall on Wednesday, April 12, immediately after job call.

All MM&P Offshore members and applicants are encouraged to attend the meeting.

The Seattle Hall is located at: 15208 52nd Ave. South, Suite 100, Seattle, WA 98188. The phone number is: 206-441-8700.

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MM&P Atlantic and Gulf Ports, the MM&P Hawaii Union Hall, the MM&P Plan Office, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will be closed on Friday, April 14, for Good Friday.

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MITAGS is looking for an instructional design coordinator (IDC).

The instructional design coordinator reports to the director of training and, under general direction, develops curricula, selects textbooks and other materials, assesses educational programs for quality and adherence to regulations and standards, and submits curricula to appropriate governing entities.

The IDC assists in implementing new technology in the classroom and evaluates how well the training program’s curriculum meets students’ and customers’ needs.

The IDC also makes improvements based on research and observations of instructional practices.

The IDC monitors procedures to ensure that instructors are implementing the curriculum successfully and meeting program goals.

The IDC meets with instructors and advisory groups to explore how curriculum materials relate to students’ occupations and meet their needs.

Desired qualifications include:

— degree in educational/instructional design or relevant work experience;

— three to five years’ experience in an academic/training environment;

— curriculum development experience;

— strong interpersonal and communication skills;

— ability to work effectively with a wide variety of individuals at all levels within the organization as well as all external customers;

— strong customer service orientation demonstrated through prior work experiences.

For more details and a copy of the job description, please contact MITAGS Human Resource Manager Jane Sibiski:

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MITAGS needs your current address! Have you moved recently? Did you remember to send MITAGS your new address for communications regarding courses? Please send your current contact information to or to the fax number below. New dedicated fax line for Admissions only: 1-443-568-1928. For all other MITAGS business, please continue to use: 410-859-5181.

For class availability or information on MITAGS courses and programs, contact Amanda Meadows, Admissions Coordinator, toll-free at 866-656-5568 or by e-mail:

Why not try our on-line calendar to register for class:

Please note the special addition to our on-campus schedule of MSC classes marked with an asterisk (*), which are not normally scheduled to be held at MITAGS.

AB – 4/17/17, 8/21/17, 10/16/17

AIS-1 – Automatic Identifications Systems Orientation: 5/23/17

ARPA-OIC – Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 8/8/17, 9/26/17

AZIPOD 2-Day – 5/22/17, 10/16/17

BRM-35 – Bridge Resource Management: 6/19/17, 9/25/17, 11/13/17

BRMP –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 5/22/17, 7/20/17, 11/14/17

BRMP-EMR –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots with Emergency Shiphandling: Contact Admissions

BRMP-Refresher – 5/24/17, 7/17/17, 9/12/17, 10/18/17

BT – Basic Safety Training: 8/14/17, 10/9/17

BT-Revalidation (2-day) – 5/4/17, 6/22/17, 8/21/17, 9/28/17, 11/8/17, 12/14/17

BT-Refresher (3-day) – 5/4/17, 6/22/17, 8/20/17, 9/28/17, 11/8/17, 12/14/17

CHS-OIC – Cargo Handling Basic: 5/8/17, 10/30/17

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]

ADVNAV-CMM – Advanced Navigation (=ECDIS & VPEN): Contact Admissions

ADVSTB-CMM – Advanced Stability: 6/12/17, 7/31/17, 10/2/17, 12/11/17

ADVWX-CMM – Advanced Meteorology: 6/5/17, 8/7/17, 9/25/17, 12/4/17

CHS-CMM – Advanced Cargo Operations (2 weeks): 4/17/17, 10/9/17

ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display Information System: 6/26/17, 8/14/17, 9/18/17

LMS – Leadership and Managerial Skills (Management Level – Formerly MCL-CMM) 5/22/17,6/19/17, 8/21/17, 9/11/17

MPP-CMM – Marine Propulsion Plants: 11/27/17

SEC-APPS – Practical Defense Tactics: 7/31/17, 11/6/17

SHMGT-CMM- Ship Management (2 weeks): 5/1/17, 10/30/17

SHS-ADV-I-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 4/24/17, 5/8/17, 6/5/17, 7/17/17, 7/31/17,8/14/17, 9/11/17, 10/2/17, 10/30/17, 12/4/17

SHS-ADV-II-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 4/17/17, 5/1/17, 5/15/17, 6/12/17,7/24/17, 8/7/17, 8/21/17, 9/18/17, 10/9/17, 11/6/17, 12/11/17

**SHS-ADV-I & II now approved to include SAR-CMM assessments at MITAGS effective immediately**

VPEN-CMM – Voyage Planning & Electronic Navigation: 10/23/17

WKP-CMM – Advanced Watchkeeping: 5/15/17, 11/13/17

CNAV-OIC – Celestial Navigation: 4/24/17, 11/6/17

CONT PLNG – Contingency Planning Workshop: Contact Admissions

CRISIS-COMMS – Crisis Communications: Contact Admissions

CRSMGT – Crisis Management and Human Behavior – 7/11/17

CDMGT – Crowd Management – 7/10/17

DDE – Great Lakes: 6/5/17

DPA – Contact Admissions

ECDIS-OIC – Contact Admissions

ECDIS for Pilots – 5/24/17, 11/14/17

ERM – Engine Resource Management: 7/10/17, 8/28/17, 10/16/17, 12/4/17

FF-BADV – Fire Fighting Combined Basic & Advanced: 8/14/17, 10/9/17

FF-ADV-REV – Advanced Fire Fighting Revalidation & Refresher: 5/2/17, 6/20/17, 8/23/17, 9/26/17, 11/6/17, 12/12/17

FSM – Fatigue, Sleep, & Medications: 4/18/17, 9/12/17

GL-Pilot – Great Lakes Pilotage Familiarization: Contact Admissions

GMDSS – Global Maritime Distress and Safety System: 8/21/17

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5 day): 6/26/17, 8/28/17, 11/27/17

LAP- 9/11/17

LAP-Great Lakes – License Advancement Program – Great Lakes: Contact Admissions

LAP-ORG3rd – License Advancement Program for Original 3rd Mate, Oceans, Any Gross
Ton License: 6/5/17, 8/7/17, 12/4/17

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 4/19/17, 9/13/17

LNG-TPIC – 12/4/17

LTS –Leadership and Teamworking Skills (Formerly MCL-OIC): 8/15/17, 9/25/17 (*2-Evening Session)

MEECE – Management of Electrical and Electronic Control: Contact Admissions

MED-PIC – Medical Person in Charge: 5/8/17, 7/10/17, 9/11/17, 10/23/17

MED-PIC-REF– Medical Person in Charge Refresher: 4/24/17, 6/26/17, 8/28/17, 11/13/17, 12/4/17

MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 4/17/17, 5/8/17, 9/11/17, 10/23/17, 11/27/17

MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 5/1/17, 6/12/17 (Evening), 6/19/17, 7/16/17, 8/25/17, 9/25/17, 10/28/17, 12/11/17

MSA –Maritime Security Awareness: Contact Admissions

[MSC – Military Sealift Command Courses]

MSC-CBRD-1 – Military Sealift Command Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defense Orientation (Basic): 6/9/17, 8/9/17, 10/2/17

MSC-DC – Military Sealift Command Damage Control: 6/7/17, 8/7/17, 10/3/17

*MSC-ENVPRO – 6/4/17, 8/6/17, 10/1/17

*MSC-FF-HELO – 6/5/17, 8/13/17, 10/16/17

MSC-SMA – Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 6/12/17, 7/17/17, 8/13/17, 10/9/17

*MSC-Security Watch Basic – 6/10/17, 8/10/17, 10/5/17

*MSC-Security Watch Advanced – 6/16/17, 7/21/17, 8/12/17, 10/7/17

*MSC-Ship’s Reaction Force – 6/17/17, 7/24/17, 8/18/17, 10/13/17

NSAP-MMP – Navigational Skills Assessment Program-MM&P – 5/9/17, 6/13/17, 8/14/17, 10/2/17

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 8/17/17, 9/25/17

ROR-1N – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 4/19/17, 5/3/17, 5/10/17, 5/17/17, 6/7/17, 6/21/17, 7/12/17, 7/26/17, 8/9/17, 8/23/17, 9/20/17, 10/4/17, 10/18/17, 11/1/17, 11/8/17, 11/15/17, 11/29/17, 12/6/17, 12/13/17

ROU-OIC – Radar Observer Program – Unlimited: 7/31/17

SAR-OIC – Search & Rescue – 10/16/17

SHS-BAS-OIC – Basic Shiphandling: 5/15/17, 8/28/17, 10/23/17

SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling-5 Day – 5/1/17, 6/26/17, 9/25/17, 11/27/17

SMS – Contact Admissions

STB-OIC – Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 8/7/17

TCNAV/CO – Terrestrial Navigation and Compasses: 7/10/17

TPIC – Tankerman Person in Charge: 5/8/17, 8/7/17

TRAC-TUG-2: Contact Admissions

TTT – Contact Admissions

VPDSD – Vessel Personnel with Designated Security Duties: 5/25/17

VSO – Vessel Security Officer: 5/22/17, 7/13/17, 9/6/17

WKP-OIC – Watchkeeping (Operational Level): 10/2/17

WX-OIC –Meteorology (Operational Level): 9/11/17

Back to Stories Covered


Winter-Spring 2017

For registration, please contact our registrar, Mary McGhee, at 206.838.1126 or You can also view our schedule and enroll online at

April 2017

17th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties
17-20 Advanced Firefighting
18th Radar Renewal
22-24 Basic Training Refresher
24-28 Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation (VPEN)
24-5 GMDSS

May 2017

2-4 Rating Forming Part of a Navigational Watch
6-8 Basic Training Refresher
8-12 ECDIS
8-12 Basic Training
8-12 Marine Propulsion Plants
15th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties
15-18 Advanced Firefighting
15-19 Able Seaman
15-26 Watchkeeping – Operational Level
15-26 Celestial Navigation
16-18 Integrated Electronic Navigation
20-22 Basic Training Refresher
23rd Radar Renewal
30th Leadership & Teamworking Skills
31-2 Security Officer – Vessel, Company, and Facility

June 2017

5-9 Medical Care Provider
5-9 Basic Shiphandling
5-16 Medical Person-In-Charge
10-12 Basic Training Refresher
12-16 Basic Training
12-16 Cargo Handling and Stowage – Operational Level
19th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties
20th Radar Renewal
19-22 Advanced Firefighting
19-23 Advanced Watchkeeping
19-23 Leadership & Managerial Skills
24-26 Basic Training Refresher
26-30 Engine Resource Management
27-29 Integrated Electronic Navigation

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The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, & Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd. Suite B, Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973. All rights reserved. The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly © 2017. Articles can be reprinted without prior permission if credit is given to The MM&P WheelhouseWeekly. For subscriptions, address changes or messages to the editor or to MM&P headquarters, e-mail Back issues of The Weekly are posted on