Wheelhouse Weekly – January 26, 2001

January 26th 2001


Bridging the Information Gap With E-News You Can Use

VOLUME 5. . . . . NUMBER 4. . . January 26, 2001




Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has reintroduced a MM&P-supported bill [S.127] that unanimously passed the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee last year which is designed to increase domestic cruise opportunities for US citizens and employment opportunities for US mariners.

Earlier this week, McCain was quoted in the Congressional Information Bureau Maritime Newsletter as saying,”While we made great progress in advancing our goals during the last Congress, our efforts were blocked by the special interests of a small group of shipbuilders who prefer the status quo that allows them to dominate the small market for large US-built cruise ships without the fear of competition,” McCain said.

As previously reported in the Wheelhouse Weekly, the bill would allow companies to bring existing cruise ships under the US-flag as long as they agree to build more vessels in the US. McCain also said it would provide more opportunities for US mariners to serve at sea and provide more work in US shipyards.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


The Senate confirmed Norman Mineta as Transportation Secretary by a unanimous vote on Wednesday, immediately following his confirmation hearing before the Senate Commerce Committee.

A former congressman and Commerce Secretary, Mineta is the only Democrat to serve in President Bush’s Cabinet. In response to remarks by several members of the committee, Mineta expressed concern over the under funding of the USCG. Considering the USCG’s aging fleet and added responsibilities, Mineta insisted that federal resources for the USCG “must be adequate.”

Sen. Fritz Hollings (D-SC) expressed concern over the lack of security in US ports. He noted than less than 2 percent of ocean shipping containers are currently inspected during entrance into the US. “I am convinced that most of the drugs coming into this country are in those containers,” he said. He also said that US ports don’t like security inspections of containers because they just want to get the containers in the port and out as quickly as possible. Mineta said the port security issue was better left up to the Customs Service and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


It may be January, but it is time for the MM&P-contracted Waterman-Central Gulf MSC vessel MV GREEN WAVE to head for the ice Antarctic ice. For more than 30 years, MSC ships have carried much needed cargo to National Science Foundation (NSF) researchers working at the Antarctic’s McMurdo Station.

During the relatively warmer Southern Hemisphere summer months McCurdo’s temperature ranges from a high of 20 and a low of 10 degrees Fahrenheit. These warmer temps allow an ice strengthened vessel to make the dangerous trek through ice flows to deliver supplies and equipment that cannot be carried by air.

McMurdo Station is Antarctica’s largest community, located on the southern end of Ross Island, just off the coast of mainland Antarctica. During the warmer summer months, the population of the station swells to more than 1,000 from the 250 personnel usually assigned there. According to the NSF, it is the southern-most land mass accessible by ship.

The GREEN WAVE, which has a specially strengthened hull to withstand damage from floating ice, will be delivering materials that support the US Antarctic Program for the coming winter and following summer season. It loaded cargo in Port Hueneme, CA earlier this month and should arrive in McMurdo Station in early Feb. The GREEN WAVE is transporting approx. 10 million pounds of cargo including 1,150 individual pieces and 506 containers.

When the ship arrives, an ice breaker will open a channel for it. After off-loading, the MSC vessel will return to Port Hueneme with a year’s worth of domestic and hazardous waste and recycled material so as not to pollute the Antarctic. This will be the GREEN WAVE’s 18th voyage to McMurdo Sound supporting the NSF.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the agency responsible for charting the nation’s waterways, has developed a totally new system that ensures navigation charts are up-to-date with the latest information when they are issued to mariners. The system uses computer-assisted cartography and just-in-time printing to print charts “on demand” that have been updated weekly with all “Notices to Mariners” fully applied.

The new system eliminates the huge problem of charts going out-of-date between editions. Under the new system, all the info mariners need to be USCG-compliant appears right on the chart … USCG, NIMA, Canadian Notices to Mariners, plus other critical changes from NOAA. Other improvements include easier to read colors, more durable material, and new info like tide tables, emergency telephone numbers and radio frequencies.

NOAA is currently test marketing 45 new charts in New York and the Upper Delaware Bay. For more info, contact NOAA at 1-800-584-4683 or call the chart manufacturer directly at 1-877-56CHART.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


While many Americans will be tuned into the Super Bowl this Sunday, AFL-CIO President John Sweeney will be meeting with world labor leaders in Davos, Switzerland at the World Economic Forum regarding the “Backlash Against Globalization.”

Sweeney is scheduled to talk about the building consensus over rules for the global economy that includes safeguards for workers’ rights and human rights and the environment. He will also discuss strategies with international labor leaders for making the global economy work for working families.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


The newsletter reports that more than 12,000 cases of forgery have been discovered in an investigation into seafaring competency commissioned by the International Maritime Organization (IMO). The report found that there is a serious problem in that a large number of ratings (deck crew) certificates, safety certificates and pollution prevention certificates are fraudulent.

The report by Seafarers’ International Research Center polled 54 maritime administrations including the seven main crew supplying nations, which generate over 60 percent of all seafarers. The report said that of the 1,384 individual seafarers and 22 employers that it also polled, 82 percent had detected forged certificates in the last five years.

IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee noted, however, that of the 12,635 reported cases of forgery, 12,000 had come from a single maritime administration in Southeast Asia, which it would not name. A major labor-supplying region in the Eastern and Central European region was also mentioned.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


Openings in classes over the next six weeks are listed below. Additional slots have been made available in BST and BRM-3. Schedule through Dec 2001 is on the MITAGS website.

  • 1/29-2/2: EINS, HAZ, MED-1ST, ROP
  • 2/5-6: BRMP
  • 2/5-7: BRM-3
  • 2/10: ROR-1, CBRD-1
  • 2/12-15 SMA
  • 2/15: ROR-1
  • 2/12-16: COMP-NET, GMDSS, TPIC
  • 2/19-23: BST
  • 2/24: ROR-1
  • 2/26-3/2: BRM-3, HAZ, MED-SMC
  • 3/5-9: ARPA, BRM-3

MSC Classes

The next 4-day MSC Small Arms (SMA) courses at MITAGS will be Feb 12-15 and Mar 12-15. Remember that to maintain currency in Small Arms, you must take the course once a year. The Strategic Sealift Communications Course will be held at MITAGS April 2-6, 2001.

GMDSS License Renewal

There have been significant changes to the renewal process. Fee has increased to $50. Forms have been revised. You cannot apply for renewal prior to 90 days before expiration date. Check under GMDSS on the MITAGS website at: for up-to-date forms and submission info.

CSE – Confined Space Entry

A program is being developed to cover requirements associated with CSE. As envisioned, training will be accomplished via seminar/s in the evening.

For additional MITAGS course info, please contact Mary Matlock at Voice: 443-989-3226 or e-mail:

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


Classes with availability through February are as follows:

  • 1/29-2/1 BRM-3 day
  • 2/12-14 BRM-3 Day
  • 2/12-16 Train the Trainer
  • 2/26-3/2 ECDIS

Note: The ECDIS course will meet the EINS (Electronic Integrated Navigation Systems) Standards. Course topics include the development of skills in validity of sensor data (including radar overlay), potential errors of interpretation, selecting operational settings and alarms for route monitoring, installation and correction of electronic charts, route planning and scheduling, navigational calculations, accessing ship’s log and data playback functions, ARPA, and AIS and trial maneuver functions.

Download their entire schedule at: The latest PNMI press releases are at: For further info contact Gregg Trunnell at voice: 206 239-9965; fax: 206-441-2995; Email:

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly




+51.24 for the week



-14.21 for the week

 Vanguard 500 Index Fund


+0.88 for the week

 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund


+0.22 for the week

 Vanguard International Growth Fund


-0.03  for the week

 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund


+0.01 for the week

 Vanguard Windsor II Fund


+0.63 for the week

 Chase Growth Fund


+0.39  for the week

 Fidelity Asset Manager


+0.03 for the week

 Fidelity Growth and Income


+0.33  for the week

 Fidelity Magellan Fund


+0.34 for the week

 Spartan US Equity Index Fund


+0.33  for the week

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly

The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, and Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd., Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1941. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: For further info contact John Peige at The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea, broadcast worldwide via FEC marine telex and is posted on our web page under “News” at:

Return to Top