Wheelhouse Weekly – December 26th, 2017

December 27th 2017

Volume 22… Number 52… Dec. 26, 2017


In This Issue:



News for MM&P Members:


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MM&P wishes all readers of The Wheelhouse Weekly, on land and at sea, and their families and friends, a happy holiday season.

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The maritime authorities have circulated an additional Maritime Advisory advising steps to take in the event of a GPS disruption such as those reported in June 2017.

The advisory states:

During the week of June 19, 2017, multiple vessels operating in the Black Sea reported GPS interference, which included intermittent signals, no signals or an incorrect signal.

Both U.S. Maritime Advisory 2017-006 and U.S. Maritime Alert 2017-005A advised mariners of this interference and provided guidance.

This Advisory reaffirms that GPS disruptions are a global concern and provides amplified guidance.

The U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Center (NAVCEN) recently posted information online regarding effective navigation practices in the context of GPS interference. The information reaffirms safe navigation practices when experiencing a possible GPS disruption, provides useful details in reporting a possible GPS disruption and is intended to generate further discussions within the maritime community about other disruption-mitigating practices and procedures. Further guidance includes recommendations to take note of critical information, such as the location (latitude/longitude), date/time and duration of the outage/disruption as well as wherever possible, to provide photographs or screen shots of equipment failures during a disruption to assist analysts.
The NAVCEN information is available at: – good – navigation – practices – how – one – vessel – master – managed – safe – navigation – during – a – gps – outage

GPS disruptions or anomalies may be reported to NAVCEN. Reporting a disruption or outage of other navigational hazards or aids to navigation can be completed electronically through the following website:

or by phoning 703 – 313 – 5900, 24 hours a day.

This message cancels U.S. Maritime Advisory 2017 – 006 and will automatically expire on 20 June 2018.

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The trade association for U.S. ports has released a statement thanking GOP lawmakers for eliminating from their new tax law a provision that would have significantly increased port infrastructure borrowing costs.

The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) has expressed relief that a provision that would have eliminated the tax-exempt status of private activity bonds (PABs) had been stripped from the final version of the legislation, the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.”

PABs are used by states and localities to fund public infrastructure, including projects aimed at expanding and improving marine terminals and seaports.

AAPA mounted a vigorous campaign to educate members of Congress and the public about the negative consequences of the GOP lawmakers’ plan to take away the bonds’ tax-exempt status.

“It was estimated that ports would have had to pay approximately $19 million in extra debt-service costs for every $100 million borrowed had the PAB tax exemption been lost,” AAPA President and Chief Executive Officer Kurt Nagle said.

“These significantly increased costs would have harmed ports’ ability to make needed investments, and likely would have delayed or even killed some projects.”

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The American Maritime Partnership (AMP), the national maritime industry coalition of which MM&P and MIRAID are members, has recognized Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) with its “Champion of Maritime” Award for 2017.

Scalise was selected to receive the award based on his advocacy for the U.S.-flag fleet and America’s merchant mariners.

“I’m honored to receive the Champion of Maritime Award,” Scalise said.

“The maritime industry is vital to Louisiana’s economy, creating more than 50,000 jobs for hard-working Louisiana families, and contributing more than $11 billion annually to our state’s economy.”

“America’s maritime industry is responsible for creating and supporting hundreds of thousands of good-paying jobs across our country.”

“It is also a critical component of America’s homeland security strategy.”

“I have long been a strong advocate for the hardworking men and women of America’s maritime industry who work tirelessly to protect our waterways, and I’ll continue to fight every day to defend and uphold the Jones Act, which is vital to the national and economic security of our country.”

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Michael L. Nickel, a longtime member of MM&P who before his retirement sailed as master for Farrell Lines, was pleased to read an article in Defense News written by his representative in Congress, Rob Wittman (R-Va.).

The topic: the need to increase investments in the Navy after two destroyers—the USS FITZGERALD and and the USS JOHN MCCAIN–collided in separate incidents earlier this year with merchant ships.

“For years, operational tempos have increased but the Navy’s size, funding and resources haven’t,” Wittman wrote.

“I agree on the fleeting-up of the U.S. Navy, but you are forgetting the U.S. Merchant Marine, during wartime when needed referred to as the 4th Arm of Defense, but soon after forgotten,” Nickel responded.

“In fact, some legislators seem to have as a mission to reduce or remove our fleet altogether by eliminating the Jones Act and the Food for Peace cargo carried on American bottoms,” he added.

“Like my fellow American mariners, I have sailed in support of the military (sometimes under fire) to Vietnam, Korea and other hot spots around the globe,” he wrote. “Please communicate your position on preserving and strengthening the U.S. Merchant Marine.”
As a follow-up, the long-time MM&P member said the office of Congressman Wittman called “to assure me that the Congressman fully supports the Jones Act and a strong U.S. Merchant Marine.”

Nickel sailed for 37 years on U.S.-flag ships. His last command before retiring was aboard a Farrell Lines ship out of New York.

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Changes made by the Australian government to the country’s cabotage law in 2012 are allowing the operators of the flag-of-convenience (FOC) ships that now ply the country’s coastal trades to exploit mariners from low-wage countries.

The Australian national fleet has been decimated by the government’s changes to the law, which until five years ago had largely mirrored America’s Jones Act.

Today, cargo that had been shipped coastwise by the same Australian ships and Australian crews for decades is being moved aboard FOC vessels.

The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) says the changes in cabotage law are allowing FOC operators to underpay their crews.

An ITF inspector who boarded the Bahamas-registered DIANA in Melbourne recently discovered that the owner was underpaying the Filipino seafarers on board who are effectively operating full time on the Australian coast.

Under the rules introduced in 2012, foreign crewmembers must be paid extra if the vessel is working more than two domestic voyages in Australian waters, but the inspection last week revealed that the seafarers on board DIANA are only receiving low FOC wages.

The DIANA is owned by an Australian company, Canadian Shipping Lines (CSL) Australia.

CSL has recently increased the use of foreign seafarers in coastal trades, an ITF spokesperson said, and is further undermining employment conditions and jobs on Australia’s coastal shipping routes.

“Under Australian legislation, all foreign workers must be paid award rates while operating in the local trade,” said ITF Australia Coordinator Dean Summers.

“ITF Australia, acting on a tip-off, has today exposed abuse of Filipino seafarers working in Australia for CSL. The ITF has contacted the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) to investigate further but we are yet to receive a response.”

“These are vulnerable foreign workers used by an Australian company to replace Australian national seafarers working exclusively in the Australian trade,” he said.

CSL Australia has so far refused to sign an industrial agreement guaranteeing international minimum standards on its fleet of deregulated FOC vessels, ACACIA, ADELIE and DIANA.

“The ITF demands the government investigate these clear breaches of our trading laws immediately and prosecute the perpetrators,” Summers said.

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The permanent position for ROS Chief Mate aboard the MV CAPE HORN is open. Matson is accepting resumés. Master’s experience preferred, no classes necessary. The vessel is currently berthed at Pier 50 in San Francisco.
If you are interested in this position, please send your resumé to Danny Defanti at

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MM&P union halls, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will reopen on Dec. 27, after the Christmas holidays.

MM&P union halls, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will be closed on Dec. 29 and Jan. 1 for New Year’s.

The MM&P Hawaii Hall will be closed on Tuesday, Jan. 2 for Jack Hall Day.

The MM&P Plan Office will reopen after the holidays on Jan. 2.

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The Plan Office has received approval to close the year-end Internal Revenue Service and company reports and to process Vacation and PRO payments for 2017 no later than Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017 at 3:00 p.m. EST.

All requests for 2017 Vacation and PRO payments received after this date and time will be held until Jan. 2, 2018 for processing and will therefore be taxable in 2018.

If you have any questions, please contact the Vacation Department at 410-850-8625, 410-850-8647 or Ken Ryan at 410-850-8617.

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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 – 4/16/18

AIS-1 – Automatic Identifications Systems Orientation: 3/19/18, 5/23/18

ARPA-OIC – Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 1/16/18, 4/3/18

AZIPOD 2-Day – 3/22/18, 5/21/18

BRM-35 – Bridge Resource Management: 2/26/18, 6/18/18

BRMP –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 1/16/18, 2/22/18, 3/29/18, 5/21/18

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

BRMP-Refresher – 3/26/18, 5/23/18

BT – Basic Safety Training: 1/15/18, 4/9/18

BT-Revalidation (2-day) (Must have 1 year of seatime in last 5 years) – 2/7/18, 3/6/18, 4/2/18, 4/30/18, 6/18/18

BT-Refresher (3-day) – 2/7/18, 3/5/18, 4/29/18

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

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]

ADVSTB-CMM – Advanced Stability: 1/29/18, 4/2/18, 6/11/18

ADVWX-CMM – Advanced Meteorology: 1/22/18, 3/12/18, 6/4/18

CHS-CMM – Advanced Cargo Operations (2 weeks): 4/9/18

CM-OPS 1 – Chief Mate Operations – Week 1: 3/5/18, 6/4/18, 8/6/18, 10/1/18

CM-OPS 2 Maersk – Chief Mate Operations II Maersk Specific: 3/12/18, 6/11/18, 8/13/18, 10/8/18

ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display Information Systems: 1/15/18, 3/26/18, 6/25/18

LMS – Leadership and Managerial Skills (Management Level – Formerly MCL-CMM): 1/8/18, 2/19/18, 5/14/18, 6/18/18

MPP-CMM – Marine Propulsion Plants: 3/5/18

SEC-APPS – Practical Defense Tactics: 3/12/18, 10/1/18

SHMGT-CMM- Ship Management (2 weeks): 4/23/18

SHS-ADV-I-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 1/15/18, 2/5/18, 3/5/18, 3/19/18, 4/9/18, 4/23/18, 5/7/18, 6/4/18, 6/18/18

SHS-ADV-II-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 1/22/18, 2/12/18, 3/12/18, 3/26/18, 4/16/18, 4/30/18, 5/14/18, 6/11/18, 6/25/18

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

VPEN-CMM – Voyage Planning & Electronic Navigation: 3/19/18

WKP-CMM – Advanced Watchkeeping: 5/7/18

CNAV-OIC – Celestial Navigation: 4/23/18

CONT PLNG – Contingency Planning Workshop: Contact Admissions

CRISIS-COMMS – Crisis Communications: 2/19/18

CRSMGT – Crisis Management and Human Behavior – 7/12/18

CDMGT – Crowd Management – 7/13/18

CSE – Confined Space Entry: 1/15/18

CSE-AWR – Confined Space Entry Awareness: 5/24/18

DDE – Great Lakes: 1/22/18, 6/4/18

DPA – Contact Admissions

ECDIS for Pilots – 2/20/18, 3/20/18, 5/24/18

ERM – Engine Resource Management: 4/23/18, 7/9/18, 11/26/18

FF-BADV – Fire Fighting Combined Basic & Advanced: 1/15/18, 4/9/18

FF-ADV-Rev (1-day) (Must have 1 year of seatime in last 5 years) – Advanced Fire Fighting Revalidation: 12/6/18, 3/8/18, 4/4/18, 5/2/18, 6/20/18

FF-ADV-REF (2-day) – Advanced Fire Fighting Refresher: 2/10/18, 3/3/18, 4/27/18

FSM – Fatigue, Sleep, & Medications: 1/16/18, 4/17/18

GL-Pilot – Great Lakes Pilotage Familiarization: 1/19/18

GMDSS – Global Maritime Distress and Safety System: 3/5/18

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5 day): 5/21/18, 8/20/18, 12/10/18

IEN – Integrated Electronic Navigation – Contact Admissions

LAP – 2/26/18, 7/9/18, 9/17/18

LAP-Great Lakes – License Advancement Program – Great Lakes: 1/22/18

LAP-ORG3rd – License Advancement Program for Original 3rd Mate, Oceans, Any Gross
Ton License: Contact Admissions

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 3/28/18

LNG-TPIC – 12/3/18

LTS –Leadership and Teamworking Skills (Formerly MCL-OIC): 5/21/18 (*2-Evening Session)

MEECE – Management of Electrical and Electronic Control Equipment (Assessments not included): 2/12/18, 4/30/18, 7/16/18, 12/3/18

MED-PIC – Medical Person in Charge: 1/22/18, 3/19/18, 5/7/18, 7/9/18, 10/8/18, 11/26/18

MED-PIC-REF– Medical Person in Charge Refresher: 1/8/18, 4/23/18, 6/25/18

MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 1/22/18, 3/19/18, 4/16/18, 5/7/18

MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 1/13/18, 1/27/18, 2/5/18, 3/9/18, 4/5/18, 5/3/18, 5/12/18, 6/21/18

MSA –Maritime Security Awareness: Contact Admissions

[MSC – Military Sealift Command Courses]

MSC-CBRD-1 – Military Sealift Command Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defense Orientation (Basic): 2/23/18, 5/24/18, 6/8/18

*MSC-DC – Military Sealift Command Damage Control: 2/21/18, 5/22/18, 6/6/18

*MSC-ENVPRO – 2/25/18, 6/3/18

*MSC-FF-HELO – 6/4/18

MSC-SMA – Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualifications: 1/8/18, 2/26/18, 5/14/18, 6/11/18

*MSC-Security Watch Basic – 2/24/18, 5/13/18, 6/9/18

*MSC-Security Watch Advanced – 1/12/18, 3/2/18, 5/18/18, 6/10/18

*MSC-Ship’s Reaction Force – 1/13/18, 3/3/18, 5/19/18, 6/15/18

NSAP-MMP – Navigational Skills Assessment Program-MM&P – 1/22/18, 1/24/18, 3/29/18, 4/23/18, 4/25/18, 6/25/18, 6/27/18

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 1/15/18

ROR-1N – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 1/10/18, 1/31/18, 2/7/18, 2/21/18, 3/7/18, 3/21/18, 4/4/18, 4/18/18, 5/2/18, 5/9/18, 5/16/18, 6/6/18, 6/20/18, 7/11/18, 7/25/18, 8/8/18, 8/22/18, 10/3/18, 10/17/18, 10/31/18, 11/7/18, 11/14/18, 11/28/18, 12/5/18, 12/12/18, 12/19/18

ROU-OIC – Radar Observer Program – Unlimited: 1/8/18

SAR – Search & Rescue – (Now with OIC and CMM assessments): 5/22/18

SHS-BAS-OIC – Basic Shiphandling: 1/29/18, 5/14/18

SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling-5 Day – 2/19/18, 3/12/18, 4/2/18, 5/21/18

SMS – Contact Admissions

STB-OIC – Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 1/22/18

TCNAV/CO – Terrestrial Navigation and Compasses: 1/29/18

TPIC – Tankerman Person in Charge: 2/12/18, 4/16/18, 7/9/18

TRAC-TUG-2: Contact Admissions

TTT – Contact Admissions

VPDSD – Vessel Personnel with Designated Security Duties: 4/12/18

VSO – Vessel Security Officer: 2/14/18, 4/9/18, 7/9/18

WKP-OIC – Watchkeeping (Operational Level): 2/19/18

WX-OIC –Meteorology (Operational Level): 3/19/18

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

January 2018
5th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
6-7 Basic Training Revalidation
6-8 Basic Training Refresher
8th Radar Renewal
8-12 Basic Training
8-12 Meteorology (Operational Level)
8-12 Emergency Shiphandling
15-19 Basic Shiphandling
16-19 Advanced Firefighting
17-19 24-Hour Hazwoper
22nd Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties (VPDSD)
22-26 Medical Care Provider
22-2 Medical Person-In-Charge
24th Hazwoper Refresher
25th Flashing Light
26th Medical DOT
26-28 Basic Training Refresher
27-28 Basic Training Revalidation
29th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation

February 2018
6th Hazwoper Refresher
8th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
9-10 Basic Training Revalidation
12th Radar Renewal
12-14 Security Officer – Vessel, Company, and Facility
12-16 Basic Training
12-23 GMDSS
19-21 24-Hour Hazwoper
20-23 Advanced Firefighting
23rd Medical DOT
24-26 Basic Training Revalidation (no class on Sunday)
26-2 Medical Care Provider
26-9 Medical Person-In-Charge
27th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
27th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties (VPDSD)

March 2018
5-9 Engine Resource Management
7th Hazwoper Refresher
8th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
9-10 Basic Training Revalidation
12th Radar Renewal
12-16 MEECE
12-16 Tankerman PIC
13-16 Advanced Firefighting
19-21 24-Hour Hazwoper
19-23 Basic Training
19-23 Leadership & Managerial Skills
23-24 Basic Training Revalidation
26th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
26th Medical DOT
26-30 Able Seaman
27th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties (VPDSD)

April 2018
3-6 ARPA
9-13 Basic Training
9-20 GMDSS
9-20 Watchkeeping (Operational Level)
9-27 Terrestrial & Coastal Navigation
11th Hazwoper Refresher
13th Radar Renewal
13-14 Basic Training Revalidation
16th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
16-18 24-Hour Hazwoper
16-20 Medical Care Provider
16-27 Medical Person-In-Charge
23rd Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties (VPDSD)
23-4 GMDSS
23-4 Watchkeeping (Operational Level)
26th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
27-28 Basic Training Revalidation
30-4 Leadership & Managerial Skills

May 2018
7-11 Radar Observer Unlimited
7-18 License Preparation
9th Hazwoper Refresher
11-12 Basic Training Revalidation
11-14 Basic Training Refresher (no class on Sunday)
14th Radar Renewal
14-18 Basic Training
14-18 Ship Construction and Basic Stability
15th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
21-23 Search and Rescue
21-25 ECDIS
23-25 24-Hour Hazwoper
25th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties (VPDSD)
29-31 Security Officer – Vessel, Company, and Facility
29-1 Advanced Firefighting

June 2018
2-4 Basic Training Revalidation (no class on Sunday)
4th Radar Renewal
4th Leadership & Teamworking Skills
4-8 Medical Care Provider
4-15 Medical Person-In-Charge
5-8 ARPA
11-14 Advanced Firefighting
11-22 GMDSS
11-22 Watchkeeping (Operational Level)
18-22 Engine Resource Management
22-23 Basic Training Revalidation
22-24 Basic Training Refresher
25th Advanced Firefighting Revalidation
25-29 Meteorology (Operational Level)
25-29 Leadership & Managerial Skills
26th Medical DOT

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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