It has been a while since MIN 524 heralded the arrival of the new Small Vessel Engineering structure and understandably, many questions have been asked by both existing and prospective engineers in the Superyacht industry. At Bluewater Yachting we have fielded many questions and the aim of this update is to clarify a few points that are not obvious in the MIN and hopefully put people on the right track for promotion and recognition.
The MCA should always be consulted on an individual basis for the definitive answer to your own circumstances and previous experience. Candidates are reminded that the PYA is a great source of help in verifying your sea time and making a case for accreditation of prior learning and experience, but in the end the MCA decide.
Bearing in mind the new structure had to satisfy all sectors of the Small Vessel community – Fishing Vessels, Yachts, Tugs, Workboats, Standby, Seismic Survey, Oceanographic Research Vessels and Government Patrol Vessels, along with the constraints of STCW, the overall outcome has served to benefit the yacht engineer in many ways.
Existing Yacht Engineers
For existing engineers, you can keep your current CoC for as long as you like, but it will retain its current limitations. If you are mid-training you will have to continue in the current system as you cannot mix and match the current Yacht (Y) and the new Small Vessel (S.V.) courses and exams. You can only convert a CoC.
The current Y courses and exams are planned to run until 2021. The new S.V. courses and exams will be delivered by Bluewater from September 2017 onwards.
If you already hold a Y engineering CoC, you can easily transfer it to the new system by following one of the routes shown in MIN 524. The MCA have made the following routes available:
|UK Certificate Held||CoC Required||Conversion (refer to section 10.1 of MIN 524 for details)|
|Yacht 4 CoC (Y4)||Any SV Certificate of Competency||A1 to A3|
|Yacht 3 CoC (Y3)||Chief Engineer SV less than 3,000 kW, less than 500 GT||B|
|Chief Engineer SV less than 9,000 kW, less than 3000 GT||C|
|Yacht 2 CoC (Y2)||Chief Engineer SV less than 9,000 kW, less than 3000 GT||D|
|Yacht 1 CoC (Y1)||Chief Engineer SV less than 9,000 kW, less than 3000 GT||E|
PLEASE NOTE: For Conversions A2, A3 and C, the written exams listed refer to the requirement for the new (S.V.) exams NOT the current Y examinations
So why bother to convert your Yacht CoC to the new Small Vessel CoC?
Moving up the ladder once in the new system is faster in most cases and the new S.V. courses and exams are more relevant.
A summary of the advantages of converting your CoC are as follows:
- Y2 Advanced Hotel Services has been removed from the New S.V. syllabus, so for current Y3 CoC holders, transferring to the new S.V Chief Engineer 9000 kW is quicker and cheaper (conversion C page 21, MIN 524).
- A fast track route now exists (conversion (A3) page 20, MIN 524) from S.V. Second Engineer to S.V. Chief Engineer 9000 kW 3000GT.
- There are no offshore mileage limitations for the new Small Vessel CoC’s, unlike the current complex manning scales system.
- The new S.V. CoC’s are Interchangeable with other Small Vessel Sectors such as Fishing Vessels, Yachts, Tugs, Workboats, Standby, Seismic Survey, Oceanographic Research Vessels and Government Patrol Vessels.
- The new S.V. CoC should be recognised by all STCW signatory nations.
- Each sea service day underway will count as 1.5 days whilst holding an S.V. CoC for Yachts only.
- There are new routes to the Merchant Navy higher power tickets routes 11 – 11.4 on pages 30 and 31 of MIN 524.
For those starting in the industry (or not yet Y4)
You may recall in the new experienced seafarer route shown on page 34 of the MIN, that the existing AEC and a new 1 week course AEC 2 is the start point for all new engineers to the structure (unless exempt by MCA through previous experience). If you have already undertaken AEC 1 you do not need to do it again. The skills test and MEOL(Y) have been absorbed into the new S.V. syllabus and a 2-week workshop module to gain the Second Engineer CoC.
Some student engineers already part way through their initial training may still want to do MEOL(Y) and the skills test this year or next to get a job or gain experience.
The new structure from Zero to Hero
The new courses will be available after the summer for you to work through to Second Engineer quicker than the existing route and with the following benefits:
- The new S.V. courses and examshave been redesigned to suit candidates from small vessels, rather than from Large Ship or Merchant Navy backgrounds and are therefore more
- The routes to promotion arequicker in the new structure. 36m to Second Engineer instead of 42m to Y4.
- The infamous Auxiliaries course has been split into 2 parts, reducing the volume of the syllabus where Part 2 will be undertaken at the higher level CoC (limited Chief 500GT) (Old Y3).
- The new Auxiliary Equipment 1 course syllabus has been furtherreduced by transferring Clutches and Gearboxes to S.V. Marine Diesels.
- The mandatory Training Record Book will improve training standards and aid proof of experience and actual sea service days. This should be available from the MCA soon.
Tim Moss – Engineering Instructor – Bluewater Yachting
Carey Secrett – Marketing & Development – PYA (Professional Yachting Association)