Wheelhouse Weekly – January 24, 2017

January 24th 2017

Volume 22 . . . Number 4. . . Jan. 24, 2017


In This Issue:




News for MM&P Members:


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Edward Wytkind, president of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), issues this statement on the inauguration of Donald Trump, 45th President of the United States:

“We congratulate Donald Trump on his inauguration as 45th President of the United States.”

“While the President inherits an economy that has made important strides since the depths of the great recession, wages remain flat for too many people and the pace of middle-class job creation remains slow. It is no coincidence that these forces have conspired against working people at a time when they are being denied the chance to form and join unions.”

“We look forward to offering our best ideas to the President and Transportation Secretary-designate Elaine Chao on policy and investment initiatives that put people to work in good jobs, modernize and expand our transportation system and infrastructure, and strengthen safety and security.”

“During the campaign, President Trump spoke to the millions of Americans who have seen their livelihoods threatened as jobs have been shipped overseas or lost to missed opportunities to invest in our economy. To address these problems, President Trump has promised to reform our trade policies to protect U.S. jobs, to invest in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure, and to enforce strong Buy America rules.”

“These are priorities we have long supported and we will work to find common ground with the new Administration in these critical areas. At the same time, we hope the President rejects policy proposals that cut the wages and eviscerate the rights of working people, and instead champions policies that rebuild the middle class.”

TTD provides a strong voice for workers in every mode of transportation and is devoted to protecting middle-class jobs, expanding collective bargaining and ensuring modern, safe and secure transportation operations and infrastructure.

MM&P is one of the 32 transportation sector unions that belong to TTD.

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American mariners may be denied their right to shore leave under a security program that allows “low-risk” ships, such as those flying the American flag, to unload cargo before the Customs and Border Patrol Agency (CBP) clears the crew to disembark.

“Given the very short turnaround times on U.S. ships in liner services… the program may effectively deny U.S.-citizen crewmembers the right to go ashore or visit family in their own country,” the presidents of the maritime unions wrote in a Jan. 20 letter to CBP Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske.

The program, which is called “ACQUA,” for “Advanced Qualified Unlading Approval,” allows “low-risk” vessels engaged in foreign trade to unload cargo before being boarded by CBP.

It also blocks port personnel from boarding vessels to assist in the myriad tasks that must be completed by American ships when they dock at their home ports.

“This can result in a very significant time period before crewmembers can leave the ship,” the union presidents say.

“U.S. citizen mariners must not be restricted to their ships and denied the basic right to shore leave in their own country due to a program designed to expedite the movement of the cargo that these tax-paying citizens transport across the ocean.”

The rationale for the ACQUA lane program is that it saves time and money by expediting the free movement of low-risk cargo.

But, the unions say, “it unreasonably places a higher priority on the free movement of cargo in international trade than on the free movement of low-risk U.S.-citizen mariners.”

The unions point out that U.S. mariners are more closely screened and vetted than any in the world, and that the security and background checks they undergo are far stricter than those that the U.S. applies to foreign nationals entering the country under the expedited global access program.

The unions also underline the fact that the additional requirements placed on U.S. ships in their home ports—such as bunkering, audits, cargo operations, stores and repairs—increase the time pressure and exacerbate the problem for American mariners, in particular since CBP does not prioritize dispatching CBP officials to U.S. ships.

The unions are calling for a system of pre-approval of U.S. mariners based on the prior submission of the crew list 96 hours in advance of arrival.

They are also asking that port relief personnel, licensed deck officers and engineers who–like the crewmembers themselves–are closely vetted by the Coast Guard and U.S. security agencies, be allowed to board the ship when it docks to assist in shipboard operations.

The unions have asked for a meeting with CBP officials to discuss fixes to the program that will ensure American mariners on U.S.-flagged ships are granted timely entry into their own country.

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Piloting ships through the Columbia Bar is one of the most hazardous jobs in the maritime industry.

Thousands of mariners and hundreds of vessels have been lost in the icy waters of the bar since recordkeeping began.

A recent Oregon Public Television report focused on the challenges that Columbia Bar pilots face as they move commercial ships through the treacherous waters of the bar in every kind of weather.

They don’t call the Columbia Bar “the graveyard of the Pacific” for nothing, says Ed John, who narrates the report.

“Every time we go to work, there’s a real risk,” says Bar Pilot Robert Johnson. “It’s terrifying but it’s the most satisfying job in the world.”

“You can never let your guard down,” he says. “On the nicest day, you could end up in the water. Then if everyone doesn’t react properly, you can be lost.”

Columbia River Bar pilots handle about 10 transits a day, John says, following a schedule of 16 days on and 14 off.

“The Columbia River Bar is billed as the roughest in the world,” says Captain Dan Jordan.

“It’s always kind of a balance for us how much risk are we willing to take to keep the economy moving.”

Only a bar pilot can make the decision to close the bar because of inclement weather, and they don’t do it often.

When ships can’t cross the bar, the entire economy on the Columbia River shuts down, Jordan says.

Shipments that can be blocked in the extremely rare case that the pilots decide to close the bar range from grain being brought in by rail for export to cars on their way to the East Coast.

The Columbia Bar Pilots are members of MM&P.

The video report is posted at

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Labor union members and their supporters rallied on Jan. 12 in Montreal, Toronto, Prince Rupert, Victoria and Vancouver in defense of the nation’s cabotage laws.

Cabotage laws—such as the Jones Act in the United States–help safeguard jobs in national trade and maintain safe, fair working conditions in domestic maritime industries.

But in Canada as well as in the United States, foreign shipping interests are engaged in a constant campaign to eliminate them.

When cabotage laws go, family-supporting jobs in domestic maritime industries go too, as has been demonstrated in Australia.

In recent months, under a program that waives cabotage laws in certain trades, Australian-citizen mariners have been thrown off their ships and replaced with foreign workers earning as little as $2/hour.

Officials of the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) are speaking out in strong support of the mass union actions in Canada.

“Cabotage is a no-brainer,” said ITF President Paddy Crumlin.

“Its merits are obvious. It defies logic that there are those who are attempting to roll it back in a country like Canada where it has proved to be so valuable.”

“Thankfully the nation’s maritime workers and their unions understand what a seemingly remote political class does not–the need to fight for what is right and what is worth saving.”

“Cabotage protects jobs, coastal communities and national security, all concepts that Canadians understand and support,” said ITF General Secretary Steve Cotton.

“The ITF is proud to stand with Canada’s maritime workers as they seek to keep their domestic maritime industry strong, skilled and employed.”

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The Matson Foundation, the community-giving arm of Matson Navigation Company, has awarded a $100,000 grant to assist the local community in supporting displaced sugar workers on Maui.

Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company (HC&S) began operations on the island more than 140 years ago. Over time, the operation grew into Hawaii’s largest farm, with 36,000 acres under cultivation.

In early 2016, parent company Alexander & Baldwin announced that the sugar plantation would transition to a new, diversified agriculture model, with sugar operations ceasing at the end of the year.

As has been reported in The Wheelhouse Weekly, the officers and crew of MV MOKU PAHU received a moving send-off when the final load of sugar from Maui left Kahului Harbor last month, marking the end of the era of sugar in the islands.

Longshore workers, harbor and dock personnel, tug captains, truck drivers, sugar refinery workers and even paddle boarders joined to salute the MOKU PAHU on Dec. 16 as she left on her final run.

The A Hui Hou Fund, launched in April by a group of concerned citizens in partnership with Maui United Way, was created to provide emergency relief assistance to workers being laid off as a result of the company’s closure.

MM&P has made a $1,000 contribution to the A Hui Hou Fund for the sugar workers. The union made the contribution on behalf of MM&P licensed deck officers and the rest of the MM&P community.

With the gift from the Matson Foundation, the fund has now amassed close to $150,000 in donations.

The money will be used to assist former HC&S workers with rent, mortgage, utilities, education costs and other basic needs.

“All of us at Matson have a deep respect for the workers of HC&S, many of whom represent generations of families who helped build the community on Maui and an industry that shaped Hawaiʻi as we know it,” said Matson CEO Matt Cox.

“We feel for the workers who are transitioning to new lives and know that the A Hui Hou Fund will put our contribution to the best use for these families,” said Buzz Fernandez, Matson’s district manager on Maui.

The fund is just one of the support services that Alexander & Baldwin has put in place to assist the 675 former sugar plant workers.

The company is providing financial support to families as well as the services of four full-time transition coordinators who give one-on-one assistance in areas ranging from helping to find new jobs to training, education and gaining access to government assistance programs.

To make a contribution to the A Hui Hou Fund, go to:

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The Board of Pilot Commissioners for the Bays of San Francisco, San Pablo, and Suisun (BOPC) has announced an examination for entrance into the Pilot Trainee Training Program during the week of June 12.

Applications are due no later than April 15.

The BOPC typically conducts entrance exams every three years, or when there is a need for licensed pilots. The last exam was held in 2014. Successful candidates may be eligible to enter the pilot trainee training program, which lasts from one to three years.

The BOPC is the only state-level pilot commission in California, and licenses up to 60 pilots to guide large vessels on the Bays of San Francisco, San Pablo, Suisun, Monterey, and navigable tributaries to Stockton and Sacramento.

The pilotage ground covers 70 separate terminals across ten counties.

“Working as a San Francisco Bar Pilot is one of the most prestigious jobs in the maritime industry,” said BOPC Executive Director Allen Garfinkle.

“Our licensees enjoy being members of an elite group of professionals working in one of the most scenic environments found anywhere in the world.”

Information about the pilot trainee training program entrance exam can be found on the BOPC’s website at

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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.”

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All MM&P union halls, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will be closed on Monday, Feb. 13, for Lincoln’s Birthday.

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Atlantic Maritime Group (AMG) Vice President Stephen Doherty has scheduled a meeting for AMG members on Wednesday, Feb. 1, at 1400, in the MM&P New York/New Jersey Hall.

All AMG members are encouraged to attend the meeting.

The MM&P New York/New Jersey Hall is located at 570 Broad St., Suite 701, Newark, NJ.

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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 of

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

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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: 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

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

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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