Wheelhouse Weekly – May 26, 2015

Volume 20 . . . Number 21. . . May 26, 2015


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MM&P Pacific Ports union halls will be closed on June 11 for King Kamehameha Day. The MM&P Houston Hall will be closed on June 19 for Texas Emancipation Day.

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The merchant marine is, was and always will be crucial to the security of the United States, said speakers at the National Maritime Day commemoration in Washington, D.C.

Among the participants in the event were Gen. Paul Selva, commander, U.S. Transportation Command, and Rear Adm. Thomas Shannon, commander, Military Sealift Command. Both cited statistics that underscore the key role played by the American Merchant Marine in our country’s national defense.

“Most of the fuel and bombs required to carry the fight to ISIS were delivered by merchant mariners,” Shannon said in reference to recent bombing missions carried out by U.S. forces against members of the brutal Middle East insurgent movement which calls itself “the Islamic State.”

Selva quoted Gen. George C. Marshall, U.S. Army Chief of Staff, who said during World War II that American merchant mariners make “it possible to transport fighting men and supplies wherever they are needed to defeat the enemy… The Army is deeply indebted to these men and women for their unceasing effort to do everything in their power to hasten the day of Victory.”

Selva said he responds to questions about the sealift resources necessary to guarantee America’s national defense with his own “Rule of 60”: 60 Ready Reserve Fleet (RRF) vessels and 60 militarily useful commercial vessels in the Maritime Security Program (MSP). “I need 11,000 mariners on any given day to sail those ships,” he said.

“There is an unbreakable tie between the men and women who sail these ships and the security of our nation,” Selva said. “We can’t win without you.”

Other speakers at the event included Rear Adm. Anita L. Lopez of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Maritime Administrator Paul “Chip”Jaenichen and Deputy Maritime Administrator Mike Rodriguez. Awards were presented to former MLL President John Reinhart, American Shipping and Logistics Group Chair Raymond Ebeling and the family of the late Bill Eglinton of the Seafarers International Union training center at Piney Point, Md.

“In times of war or national emergency,” merchant mariners “bolster our national security as a fourth arm of defense,” said President Barack Obama in his official Maritime Day Proclamation. “Whether transporting commercial goods or military equipment, battling tough weather or enemy fire, they strive and sacrifice to secure a brighter future for all Americans. On this day, we reaffirm the importance of their contributions and salute all those who serve this noble cause.”

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Countries that have lost their shipbuilding industries and allowed their merchant fleets to disappear have experienced a loss of relevance on the international scene, higher consumer prices and a shrinking middle class, says MM&P President Don Marcus. He made the remarks in an interview on National Maritime Day that was published in MarEx Newsletter.

“Countries that have lost their maritime industries are dependent on foreigners for imports and exports,” Marcus says. “Countries that have allowed their maritime base to falter are now totally dependent on foreign shipping, including for their domestic trades. At the end of the day, they’re paying more for everything. No cost savings to consumers have resulted from the diminishment of the national fleets.” He said the concept that savings could result from the withering of national flag lines “is a myth of free traders looking for more profits at any cost.”

Marcus cited the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia as examples of countries whose footprints have been diminished by the loss of a maritime industry. “Canada cannot build their own naval vessels and in the U.K. there are only one or two shipyards left that can build warships,” he said. “In Australia and Canada particularly, they are also dependent on foreign shipping for their international commerce and trade.”

“These countries… have lost an important part of their industrial base, which created good paying jobs,” he said. “The cost of products is whatever the shipper can get away with in order to make more profits. You cannot make an argument that consumers have prospered. And, those countries that have allowed their maritime sectors to diminish have also lost jobs, their middle class and, more importantly, skilled labor.”

Here in the United States, Marcus said, “We are quickly approaching the point of no return on the relevancy of U.S.-flag presence on the high seas.” He said the United States today is at the same point as before World War I, when there were not enough ships to move armaments and goods to Europe. “There was a massive shipbuilding program, but most of the ships weren’t built until the war was actually over,” he said. “And, here we are again, repeating ourselves, getting down to the point of no return. It is a disturbing pattern.”

Marcus points to work being done in Congress and at the state level by the maritime unions and U.S.-flag employers to educate legislators about the importance of the industry. “It is almost a certainty that the United States will be engaged in a conflict someplace, somewhere in the future,” he said. “We need to continue to have the support of the decision makers in Congress and the military. They need to realize there has to be a baseline logistical capability for times of conflict in the world, so there needs to be a way to sustain our capabilities in times of peace as well.”

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A bill that would award a $25,000 one-time bonus to merchant mariners who served in World War II has been introduced in the House of Representatives by Reps. Janice Hahn (D- Calif.) and Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.). The two discussed the legislation in National Maritime Day speeches on the East and West coasts.

“The first Maritime Day honoring our merchant mariners was held in 1970,”Hahn said in remarks to an audience at the San Pedro Merchant Mariners Veterans Memorial. “Before that, despite their courage and service, and despite suffering higher casualty rates during World War II than other branches of our military, merchant mariners were excluded from celebrations of Veterans Day and Memorial Day.”

The legislation would provide “well-deserved recognition for these heroic mariners who fought so valiantly for our country,” Hunter said in remarks at a Maritime Day event in Washington, D.C.

Hahn has introduced HR 563, “Honoring Our World War II Merchant Mariners Act of 2015,” to provide the payment to surviving World War II merchant mariners. More than 6,000 merchant mariners died in service during World War II.

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MV SAMISH, the newest addition to the Washington State Ferry (WSF) fleet, was christened May 20 at Vigor Industrial Shipyard in Seattle. The second of the three vessels that will replace WSF’s 1950s-era Evergreen-class ferries, SAMISH can carry 1,500 passengers and 144 cars. Samish is a tribal word meaning “giving people.” The new vessel will enter service on the Anacortes/San Juan Islands route this summer. The third vessel in the class, MV CHIMACUM, is under construction at Vigor and is expected to be completed in 2017. Licensed deck officers who belong to the MM&P United Inland Group-Pacific Maritime Region crew all the ferries in the Washington State Ferry system.

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West Coast longshore workers have overwhelmingly voted to ratify a tentative contract agreement reached in February with employers represented by the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA). Members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) voted 82 percent in favor of approving the new 5-year agreement that will expire on July 1, 2019. The previous contract was ratified in 2008 with a vote of 75 percent in favor. Voting results were certified last week by the ILWU’s Coast Balloting Committee, which was chosen by Coast Longshore Caucus delegates elected from each of the 29 West Coast ports.

“The negotiations for this contract were some of the longest and most difficult in our recent history,” said ILWU International President Robert McEllrath. “Membership unity and hard work by the Negotiating Committee made this fair outcome possible.”

The union said the new agreement provides approximately 20,000 good-paying jobs in 29 West Coast port communities. The contract will maintain excellent health benefits, improve wages, pensions and job safety protections, limit outsourcing of jobs and provide an improved system for resolving job disputes.

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The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) has criticized moves by the conservative Australian government to deregulate the shipping industry and place at risk thousands of domestic jobs in the maritime sector. The changes would dismantle a comprehensive reform package implemented by the previous government three years ago that created a level playing field in domestic shipping. The 2012 package included support for Australian shipping companies, such as tax breaks and training subsidies, and a requirement that foreign-flagged vessels pay Australian level wages when working domestic trade sectors.

“The ITF strongly urges the retention and improvement of the Australia’s Coastal Trading Act,” says ITF President Paddy Crumlin. “The 2012 changes have the potential to create employment, sustain business opportunities and productivity and support Australia’s economy, environment and way of life,” he said, “but they must be given time to work.” The ITF said if the conservative government’s plans are implemented, up to 10,000 Australian jobs in the maritime industry could be transferred offshore.

He said the outcome could be disastrous for employment, fuel security, maritime security and the environment. He said the ITF is preparing to fight legislation to undercut the country’s cabotage laws during the first six months of the year.

The comments were made at a series of ITF meetings conducted May 10-15 in Perth, Australia, which included meetings of the Seafarers and Dockers Sections of the ITF. In attendance were all ITF U.S. maritime affiliates including MM&P, which was represented by ITF Fair Practices Committee Steering Group delegate Don Marcus.

The preservation and extension of cabotage laws was a principal topic of discussion, as were the implementation of the Maritime Labor Convention, the high levels of inspections and seafarers’ wage recoveries resulting from the ITF Flag of Convenience inspection program, the continued monitoring of Maersk Lines by the ITF’s Maersk Network and the ongoing campaign to insure that seafarers do not perform longshoremen’s cargo lashing duties aboard ship.

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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Office of Coast Survey (OCS) wants to know if you are satisfied with its products, services and data, and if you have suggestions as to how NOAA can improve them.

The survey has two tracks, one for professional maritime users of NOAA products and data and another for recreational users. Both portions of the survey are built from trends previously gathered from similar surveys conducted by NOAA’s Office of Coast Survey. You will only be asked to fill out one section of the survey; whichever is most pertinent to your interests. Either track should take no more than 10 minutes of your time.

Please go to this link to complete the online questionnaire:

The data collected from this survey will be analyzed according to the specifications of the Market Research Society’s Code of Conduct, assuring confidentiality to participants. Answers to the questionnaire will only be used for statistical analysis.

When you complete the questionnaire click “SUBMIT” and wait for the Office of Coast Survey website to be displayed to ensure your responses were received. A company that specializes in research on Charts and other navigation products called Strategy, Research & Action Inc., will receive and analyze the surveys and provide NOAA with statistical results. Please complete the survey by June 1, 2015.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns regarding this survey or any other aspect of this collection of information, please contact Matthew Kroll (, National Ocean Service, 1315 East-West Highway, SSMC3, Room 6350, N/CS5, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910.

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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 Kelly Michielli, 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 – 8/17/15, 10/12/15

AIS-1 – Automatic Identifications Systems Orientation: 6/19/15, 7/13/15

ARPA-OIC – Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 8/4/15, 9/22/15, 1/26/16

AZIPOD 2-Day – 10/1/15

BRM-35 – Bridge Resource Management: 8/3/15, 10/19/15, 2/1/16

BRMP –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 6/17/15, 7/16/15, 11/9/15

BRMP-EMR –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots with Emergency Shiphandling: 9/28/15

BT – Basic Safety Training: 6/8/15, 8/10/15, 10/5/15, 1/25/16

BT-Revalidation – 8/4/15, 11/3/15

CHS-OIC – Cargo Handling Basic: 10/26/15

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]

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

ADVSTB-CMM – Advanced Stability: 6/15/15, 7/27/15, 9/28/15, 1/25/16,3/28/16

ADVWX-CMM – Advanced Meteorology: 6/1/15, 8/3/15, 10/19/15, 1/4/16,3/7/16

CHS-CMM – Advanced Cargo Operations (2 weeks): 10/5/15

ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display Information System: 6/8/15, 8/17/15,9/21/15, 10/5/15, 11/2/15, 12/7/15, 1/11/16, 2/22/16, 3/21/16

LMS – Leadership and Managerial Skills (Management Level – Formerly MCL-CMM): 6/22/15, 7/13/15, 8/10/15, 8/31/15, 9/28/15, 10/26/15, 11/16/15,11/30/15, 1/18/16, 2/15/16, 3/14/16

MPP-CMM – Marine Propulsion Plants: 11/16/15

SHMGT-CMM- Ship Management (2 weeks): 9/14/15

SHS-ADV-I-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 6/1/15, 7/13/15, 8/10/15,8/24/15, 10/5/15, 11/9/15, 11/30/15, 1/11/16, 2/8/16, 3/14/16

SHS-ADV-II-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 6/8/15, 7/20/15,8/17/15, 8/31/15, 10/12/15, 11/16/15, 12/7/15, 1/18/16, 2/15/16, 3/21/16

VPEN-CMM – Voyage Planning & Electronic Navigation: 11/30/15, 2/29/16

WKP-CMM – Advanced Watchkeeping: 11/9/15

CNAV-OIC – Celestial Navigation: 11/9/15

CONT PLNG – Contingency Planning Workshop: Contact Admissions

CRISIS-COMMS – Crisis Communications: 7/9/15

DDE – Great Lakes: 2/1/16

DPA – Contact Admissions

ECDIS-OIC – Contact Admissions

ECDIS-Pilots – 6/15/15, 7/14/15, 11/12/15

ERM – Engine Resource Management: 6/15/15, 7/20/15, 8/24/15, 9/21/15,10/19/15, 11/9/15, 12/14/15, 1/4/16, 2/8/16, 3/21/16

FF-BADV – Fire Fighting Combined Basic & Advanced: 8/10/15, 10/5/15, 1/25/16, 2/22/16

FSM – Fatigue, Sleep, & Medications: 7/6/15, 9/15/15, 11/11/15

GL Pilot – Great Lakes Pilotage Familiarization: 1/22/16

GMDSS – Global Maritime Distress and Safety System: 8/24/15, 3/7/16

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5 day): 6/22/15, 8/31/15, 11/16/15

LAP- 9/14/15

LAP-Great Lakes – License Advancement Program – Great Lakes: 1/25/16

LAP-ORG3rd – License Advancement Program for Original 3rd Mate, Oceans, Any Gross
Ton License: 6/1/15, 8/3/15, 11/30/15, 3/7/16

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 6/17/15, 7/16/15, 9/16/15, 11/10/15

LNG-TPIC – 12/7/15

LTS –Leadership and Teamworking Skills (Formerly MCL-OIC): 9/21/15

MEECE – Management of Electrical and Electronic Control: 6/8/15, 7/6/15, 8/17/15, 9/14/15, 10/12/15, 11/2/15, 12/7/15, 1/11/16, 2/22/16, 3/28/16

MED-PIC – Medical Person in Charge: 6/15/15, 8/24/15, 12/7/15, 1/4/16

MED-PIC-REF– Medical Person in Charge Refresher: 7/27/15, 9/28/15, 2/1/15, 3/14/16

MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 6/15/15, 8/24/15, 10/12/15, 12/7/15, 1/4/15, 2/15/16

MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 6/20/15, 7/25/15, 8/28/15, 11/5/15, 12/12/15, 1/9/15, 1/31/16

MSA –Maritime Security Awareness: Contact Admissions

[MSC – Military Sealift Command Courses]

MSC-CBRD-1 – Military Sealift Command Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defense Orientation (Basic): 6/5/15, 8/19/15, 10/29/15, 3/8/16

MSC-DC – Military Sealift Command Damage Control (4 Evenings): 6/2/15, 8/17/15, 10/27/15, 3/5/16

*MSC-ENVPRO – 6/6/15, 8/16/15, 10/31/15, 2/28/16

*MSC-FF-HELO – 6/9/15, 8/3/15, 11/2/15, 2/22/16

MSC-SMA – Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 8/8/15, 10/19/15, 1/4/16, 2/29/16

*MSC-Security Watch Basic – 5/30/15, 8/6/15, 10/17/15, 2/26/16

*MSC-Security Watch Advanced –6/1/15, 8/12/15, 10/23/15, 1/8/16, 3/4/16

*MSC-Ship’s Reaction Force – 6/2/15, 8/13/15, 10/24/15, 1/10/16, 3/5/16

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 8/3/15, 9/21/15, 1/25/16

ROR-1N – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 6/3/15, 6/10/15, 6/17/15, 7/8/15, 7/22/15, 8/5/15, 8/19/15, 9/2/15, 9/16/15, 9/30/15, 10/14/15, 10/28/15, 11/3/15, 11/11/15, 11/18/15, 12/2/15, 12/10/15, 1/6/16, 1/13/16, 2/3/16

ROU-OIC – Radar Observer Program – Unlimited: 6/1/15, 7/27/15, 1/18/16, 2/1/16

SAR-OIC – Search & Rescue – 10/19/15

SHS-BAS-OIC – Basic Shiphandling: 6/22/15, 11/2/15, 2/15/16

SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling-5 Day: 7/27/15, 9/28/15, 1/25/16

SMS – Contact Admissions

STB-OIC – Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 8/3/15, 2/8/16

TCNAV/CO – Terrestrial Navigation and Compasses: 7/6/15, 1/4/16

TPIC – Tankerman Person in Charge: 8/3/15

TRAC-TUG-2: Contact Admissions

TTT – Contact Admissions

VPDSD – Vessel Personnel with Designated Security Duties: 5/21/15

VSO – Vessel Security Officer: 7/22/15, 9/9/15, 10/7/15, 10/17/15, 2/15/16

WKP-OIC – Watchkeeping (Operational Level): 9/28/15, 3/21/16

WX-OIC –Meteorology (Operational Level): 9/14/15, 2/29/16

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Please also see our schedule and enroll online at For registration contact our registrar, Jennifer Pitzen: 206.838.1126 or

May 2015

27-29 Bridge Resource Management and Emergency Shiphandling for Pilots

June 2015

1-3 Security – Vessel, Company, and Facility
1-5 Medical Care Provider
1-12 Medical Person-In-Charge
8-12 Leadership and Managerial Skills
15-19 ECDIS
15-19 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
22-26 Leadership and Managerial Skills
22-26 Basic Meteorology
29-3 Leadership and Managerial Skills

July 2015

6-24 Terrestrial and Coastal Navigation
13-17 Leadership and Managerial Skills
13-24 GMDSS
20-23 ARPA
27-31 Radar Observer Unlimited

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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 © 2015. Articles can be reprinted without prior permission if credit is given to The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly. For address changes, send an e-mail to Back issues of The Weekly are posted on