Wheelhouse Weekly – January 17, 2017

January 18th 2017

Volume 22 . . . Number 3. . . Jan. 17, 2017


In This Issue:



News for MM&P Members:


Never miss an issue!
Click here to subscribe to the Wheelhouse Weekly mailing list.
Did you miss a week?
Back editions of the Wheelhouse Weekly are available in the archives section.


A U.S.-flag car carrier with 20 crewmembers on board is adrift in the Gulf of Mexico after an engine room fire.

All members of the crew are reported to be safe.

The MV ALLIANCE ST LOUIS was operating on emergency power and drifting approximately 135 miles south of Southwest Pass, La., after a fire broke out yesterday.

A Coast Guard spokesperson said the electrical fire in the ship’s engine room was discovered and extinguished by the crew early Monday morning.

The Coast Guard Cutter BRANT and an integrated tug were on scene to provide assistance.

The Coast Guard said a commercial tug had been dispatched to tow the ship to Port Arthur, Texas.

Back to Stories Covered


Labor unions representing more than 100,000 American aviation workers filed suit on Jan. 12 to overturn the Obama administration’s decision to permit Norwegian Air International (NAI) to fly to and from the United States.

The lawsuit–by the Airline Pilots Association (ALPA), allied U.S. aviation unions and the AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department (TTD)–seeks to overturn the ruling on the grounds that it violates U.S. aviation accords with Europe and undercuts labor standards.

NAI has been labeled a flag-of-convenience (FOC) airline in that, like its maritime industry counterparts, it sources workers from countries where wages are low and labor protections minimal or nonexistent.

NAI is the Irish subsidiary of Norway-based Norwegian Air Shuttle.

By operating from Ireland, it can hire pilots and flight attendants under short-term, individual employment contracts arranged by a hiring agency in Singapore.

“Decades ago, our government sealed the fate of the American Merchant Marine by opening the floodgates to the same type of forum-shopping for low labor costs and standards that lies at the core of NAI’s business model,” says TTD President Ed Wytkind.

“The result is that today we have sweatshops at sea. Most of the ships calling at our ports are crewed by mariners working in low-wage and often dangerous conditions as global shipping giants earn billions in profits. Our maritime workforce is less than 10 percent of the size it was 50 years ago and only about two percent of shipping into U.S. ports is handled by U.S.-flag vessels.”

“Our lawsuit reaffirms our collective pledge to fight for what is right for U.S. workers,” Wytkind says.

“This important issue should have been resolved in favor of U.S. industry and until the decision is reversed or NAI’s business model is changed, we will not back down.”

MM&P is one of 32 transportation sector unions that make up the AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department.

Back to Stories Covered


The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) is hailing new Maritime Labor Convention (MLC) provisions intended to fight the practice of “crew abandonment.”

“Mechanisms are now in place for a huge change that will finally treat the running sore of crew abandonment,” says ITF President Paddy Crumlin.

“At last, the fundamental idea that those who send seafarers to sea have a responsibility for them is enshrined in regulation.”

“The new provisions are deeply significant, and a worthy addition to the hugely significant MLC itself,” says ITF General Secretary Steve Cotton.

“All parties must now work together to ensure that they are put into action, and address those areas in the world where there’s an absence of MLC ratification.”

He said success will depend on educating seafarers in low-labor cost countries who sail on flag-of-convenience (FOC) ships to “raise the alarm right away” in case of problems.

To spread the word, the ITF has posted web pages in multiple languages at It is also circulating instruction posters to religious missions and ships.

In related news, the ITF has made what it calls “a last ditch effort” to convince the Turkish owner of the abandoned ship SEAHONEST and its flag state, Panama, to “stop the suffering” of 17 men who have been abandoned in the Port of Algiers for seven months.

“I believe there’s a real risk of suicide–that’s how desperate they are,” says ITF inspector Mohamed Arrachedi. “The crew are on the brink.”

The men, from India and Turkey, have been without pay or provisions since May.

“The company has washed its hands of them, yet continues to operate other vessels. It’s a human disgrace, I believe they are happy to see the men reach breaking point in the hope that they will leave without a cent of what they’re owed.”

He said the crew is subsisting on food and humanitarian assistance provided by the ITF, Algerian trade unions, the port authority of Algiers and the embassies of India and Turkey.

Back to Stories Covered


The ICC International Maritime Bureau (IMB) reports that more crewmembers were kidnapped last year than at any time during the previous decade, but that global piracy overall was at its lowest level since 1998.

For 2016, the IMB received reports of 191 incidents of piracy and armed robbery, down from 246 in 2015.

An IMB spokesman said that the Sulu Sea remains an area of grave concern.

“Certain shipping routes remain dangerous, and the escalation of crew kidnapping is a worrying trend in some emerging areas,” said IMB Piracy Reporting Centre Director Pottengal Mukundan.

“The kidnappings in the Sulu Sea between East Malaysia and the Philippines are a particular concern,” he added.

Last year, the IMB said, 150 vessels were boarded, 12 fired upon and seven hijacked. Twenty-two attacks were “thwarted.”

One hundred and fifty-one people were being held hostage by pirates at the close of 2016.

Pirates kidnapped 62 people for ransom in 15 separate attacks in 2016.

Just over half were captured off West Africa, while 28 were kidnapped from tugs, barges, fishing boats and merchant ships around Malaysia and Indonesia.

The agency said that the kidnapping of people from merchant vessels in the Sulu Sea and their transfer to the Southern Philippines “represents a notable escalation in attacks.”

The Gulf of Guinea was another hotspot, with 34 people taken in nine attacks.

Nine of 12 vessels fired on were sailing off the coast of Nigeria, some at distances as great as 100 nautical miles from the coast.

IMB recorded two piracy incidents off Somalia: pirates tried to attack a container vessel in the Gulf of Aden in May and fired on a product tanker in the Somali basin some 300 nautical miles from shore in October.

Peru reported 11 incidents, 10 of which were at the country’s main port, Callao.

The IMB Piracy Reporting Centre is the world’s only independent 24-hour manned center to receive reports of pirate attacks.

Back to Stories Covered


Union members at Honeywell’s South Bend, Ind., plant have been locked out of their jobs for eight months.

The lockout began after they voted down a contract that would freeze pensions and eliminate retiree health care and cost-of-living increases.

Three hundred and twenty aerospace workers with Auto Workers (UAW) Local 9 in South Bend, Ind., have been locked out since May 9.

Another 40 UAW members in Green Island, N.Y., are also locked out.

The company is demanding the power to change health care premiums and deductibles unilaterally, eliminate cost-of-living increases and retiree health care, freeze pensions, cut overtime pay and freely subcontract-out work.

It claims it has to rein in costs because “declining demand is producing turbulence” for plane manufacturers.

A UAW spokesperson points out that Honeywell’s 2015 profit of $4.77 billion set a new record.

The two plants produce wheel rims and braking systems for commercial and military aircraft, including the Boeing 737, the Boeing B-92 and the Lockheed Martin F-35.

The average wage of the locked-out UAW hourly workers is $21.83.

Honeywell CEO David Cote makes $15,865 an hour.

After he retires in March 2017, he will receive an estimated $908,712 every month for the rest of his life.

Honeywell had prepared for the lockout carefully, hiring a subcontractor to provide 150-200 “replacements,” who shadowed workers inside the plant in the lead-up to the contract vote.

Another Honeywell facility, this one in Minneapolis, has a contract deadline of Feb. 2.

The corporation is reportedly using the same tactics to try to scare workers there into accepting concessions.

Last summer the community of South Bend—including members of UAW Local 5, who make Mercedes there—turned out for rallies and pickets in support of Honeywell workers.

Members of UAW Local 551, who work 80 miles away at the Ford plant in Chicago, have made trips to the picket lines and raised funds.

For Christmas they raised $7,500 for locked-out Honeywell employees.

The news was reported for Labor Notes by retired autoworker Dianne Feeley.

Donations and messages of support can be sent to UAW Local 9, 740 Michigan St., South Bend, IN 46601.

Back to Stories Covered


Members employed or seeking employment aboard International Shipholding Corporation (ISH) vessels (Central Gulf Lines, Waterman Steamship Corporation, Sulphur Carriers) are urged to review posted notices in the hiring halls and in the Members’ Only section of

These notices were transmitted to contracted ISH vessels on Nov. 14, Nov. 22 and Dec. 27, 2016, and on Jan. 6, 2017.

The same information has also been posted in the Members’ Only section of

To view the documents in the Members’ Only section of, go to, enter the Members’ Only site and, in the left-hand column, click on “Documents,” then on “Document Downloads” and then on “ISH Bankruptcy.”

Back to Stories Covered


A meeting of the Offshore Shipping/Work Rules Committee is scheduled for Feb. 22-23.

Members who wish to submit a resolution should send it to the Office of the International Secretary-Treasurer.

Please refer to Article XIII of the Offshore Shipping Rules for additional information on submitting resolutions.

The Offshore Shipping & Work Rules are posted in the Members’ Only section

The deadline for submission of proposed changes is prior to close of business on Feb. 10, 2017.

Back to Stories Covered


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: 1/24/17, 4/4/17, 8/8/17, 9/26/17

AZIPOD 2-Day – 3/6/17, 5/22/17, 10/16/17

BRM-35 – Bridge Resource Management: 1/30/17, 4/3/17, 6/19/17, 9/25/17, 11/13/17

BRMP –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 3/6/17, 5/22/17, 7/20/17, 11/14/17

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

BRMP-Refresher – 3/8/17, 5/24/17, 7/17/17, 9/12/17, 10/18/17

BT – Basic Safety Training: 1/23/17, 4/10/17, 8/14/17, 10/9/17

BT-Revalidation (2-day) – 3/9/17, 5/4/17, 6/22/17, 8/21/17, 9/28/17, 11/8/17, 12/14/17

BT-Refresher (3-day) – 3/9/17, 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: 1/16/17, 4/10/17, 6/12/17, 7/31/17, 10/2/17, 12/11/17

ADVWX-CMM – Advanced Meteorology: 1/9/17, 3/13/17, 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: 1/23/17, 3/27/17, 6/26/17, 8/14/17,9/18/17

LMS – Leadership and Managerial Skills (Management Level – Formerly MCL-CMM) – 1/30/17,2/20/17, 5/22/17, 6/19/17, 8/21/17, 9/11/17

MPP-CMM – Marine Propulsion Plants: 4/3/17

SEC-APPS – Practical Defense Tactics: 3/13/17, 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): 1/16/17, 2/6/17, 3/6/17, 3/20/17, 4/10/17,4/24/17, 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): 1/23/17, 2/13/17, 3/13/17, 3/27/17, 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: 3/20/17, 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: 3/2/17

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

CDMGT – Crowd Management – 7/10/17

DDE – Great Lakes: 1/30/17, 6/5/17

DPA – Contact Admissions

ECDIS-OIC – Contact Admissions

ECDIS for Pilots – 2/28/17, 5/24/17, 11/14/17

ERM – Engine Resource Management: 2/27/17, 7/10/17, 8/28/17, 10/16/17, 12/4/17

FF-BADV – Fire Fighting Combined Basic & Advanced: 1/23/17, 4/10/17, 8/14/17, 10/9/17

FF-ADV-REV – Advanced Fire Fighting Revalidation & Refresher: 3/7/17, 5/2/17, 6/20/17, 8/23/17, 9/26/17, 11/6/17, 12/12/17

FSM – Fatigue, Sleep, & Medications: 1/17/17, 4/4/17, 4/18/17, 9/12/17

GL-Pilot – Great Lakes Pilotage Familiarization: 1/6/17

GMDSS – Global Maritime Distress and Safety System: 3/6/17, 8/21/17

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

LAP- 2/13/17, 9/11/17

LAP-Great Lakes – License Advancement Program – Great Lakes: 1/9/17

LAP-ORG3rd – License Advancement Program for Original 3rd Mate, Oceans, Any Gross
Ton License: 3/20/17, 6/5/17, 8/7/17, 12/4/17

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 1/18/17, 3/7/17, 4/19/17, 9/13/17

LNG-TPIC – 12/4/17

LTS –Leadership and Teamworking Skills (Formerly MCL-OIC): 2/13/17, 4/3/17, 8/15/17, 9/25/17 (*2-Evening Session)

MEECE – Management of Electrical and Electronic Control: Contact Admissions

MED-PIC – Medical Person in Charge: 1/9/17, 3/20/17, 5/8/17, 7/10/17, 9/11/17, 10/23/17

MED-PIC-REF– Medical Person in Charge Refresher: 1/30/17, 4/24/17, 6/26/17, 8/28/17, 11/13/17, 12/4/17

MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 1/9/17, 3/20/17, 4/17/17, 5/8/17, 9/11/17, 10/23/17, 11/27/17

MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 1/14/17, 3/6/17, 5/1/17, 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): 2/23/17, 6/9/17, 8/9/17, 10/2/17

MSC-DC – Military Sealift Command Damage Control: 2/21/17, 6/7/17, 8/7/17, 10/3/17

*MSC-ENVPRO – 2/26/17, 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: 1/9/17, 2/27/17, 6/12/17, 7/17/17, 8/13/17, 10/9/17

*MSC-Security Watch Basic – 2/24/17, 6/10/17, 8/10/17, 10/5/17

*MSC-Security Watch Advanced – 1/13/17, 3/3/17, 6/16/17, 7/21/17, 8/12/17, 10/7/17

*MSC-Ship’s Reaction Force – 1/16/17, 6/17/17, 7/24/17, 8/18/17, 10/13/17

NSAP-MMP – Navigational Skills Assessment Program-MM&P – 1/25/17, 3/22/17, 5/9/17

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 1/23/17, 8/17/17, 9/25/17

ROR-1N – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 1/11/17, 2/1/17, 2/8/17, 2/22/17, 3/8/17, 3/22/17, 4/5/17, 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: 1/16/17, 7/31/17

SAR-OIC – Search & Rescue – 4/10/17, 10/16/17

SHS-BAS-OIC – Basic Shiphandling: 2/20/17, 5/15/17, 8/28/17, 10/23/17

SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling-5 Day – 2/20/17, 5/1/17, 6/26/17, 9/25/17, 11/27/17

SMS – Contact Admissions

STB-OIC – Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 1/9/17, 8/7/17

TCNAV/CO – Terrestrial Navigation and Compasses: 1/30/17, 7/10/17

TPIC – Tankerman Person in Charge: 2/13/17, 8/7/17

TRAC-TUG-2: Contact Admissions

TTT – Contact Admissions

VPDSD – Vessel Personnel with Designated Security Duties: Contact Admissions

VSO – Vessel Security Officer:, 2/14/17, 4/17/17, 5/22/17

WKP-OIC – Watchkeeping (Operational Level): 2/20/17

WX-OIC –Meteorology (Operational Level): 3/20/17

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

January 2017

21-23 Basic Training Refresher
23-24 ECDIS for Pilots
23-27 Train the Trainer
23-27 Basic Training
27th Leadership & Teamworking Skills
30th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties
30-2 Advanced Firefighting
30-2 ARPA
30-17 Terrestrial & Coastal Navigation w/ Compasses

February 2017

3rd Radar Renewal
6-7 ECDIS for Pilots
6-10 Engine Resource Management
10th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties
11-13 Basic Training Refresher
13-17 ECDIS
13-17 Basic Training
20-24 Leadership & Managerial Skills
20-24 Medical Care Provider
21-23 Integrated Electronic Navigation
27-2 Advanced Firefighting

March 2017

2nd Radar Renewal
4-6 Basic Training Refresher
6th Leadership & Teamworking Skills
6-10 Radar Observer Unlimited
6-10 Basic Training
13th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties
13-16 Advanced Firefighting
13-17 ECDIS
13-17 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
13-17 Meteorology – Operational Level
18-20 Basic Training Refresher
20-24 Engine Resource Management
20-24 Basic Construction and Stability
21st Radar Renewal
21-23 Security Officer – Vessel, Company, and Facility
22-24 Integrated Electronic Navigation
27th Flashing Light
27-31 Leadership & Managerial Skills
28-31 ARPA

April 2017

3-4 ECDIS for Pilots
3-7 Search & Rescue / Emergency Procedures
3-14 GMDSS
8-10 Basic Training Refresher
10-14 Basic Training
10-14 Medical Care Provider
10-21 Medical Person-In-Charge
10-21 Watchkeeping – Operational Level
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

Back to Stories Covered

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