46 CFR § 10.232 - Sea service.
(a) Documenting sea service.
(1) Sea service may be documented in various forms such as certificates of discharge, pilotage service and billing forms, and service letters or other official documents from marine companies signed by the owner, operator, master, or chief engineer of the vessel. The Coast Guard must be satisfied as to the authenticity and acceptability of all evidence of experience or training presented.
(2) Documentary evidence produced by the applicant, unless in the form of a Certificate of Discharge conforming to § 14.307 of this subchapter, must contain all of the following information:
(i) Vessel name(s) and official numbers listed on the registration, certificate, or document issued.
(ii) Gross tonnage of the vessel.
(iv) The amount and nature (e.g. chief mate, assistant engineer, etc.) of the applicant's experience.
(v) Applicable dates of service for each vessel, and the ports or terminals if applicable.
(vi) The routes upon which the experience was acquired.
(vii) For those seeking to renew a radar observer endorsement, whether the vessel is equipped with radar and if the mariner served in a position that routinely uses radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes.
(x) Whether the vessel is manned and equipped in accordance with SOLAS.
(xi) Where required for an officer endorsement, time served as bridge watchkeeping or engine watchkeeping duties under the supervision of a qualified officer.
(3) An MMC endorsement, in certain cases, may be considered as satisfactory evidence of any qualifying experience for obtaining other endorsements.
(4) For service on vessels of less than 200 GRT, owners of vessels may attest to their own service and provide proof of ownership. Those who do not own a vessel must obtain letters or other evidence from licensed personnel or the owners of the vessels listed.
(5) If the required sea service is associated with watchkeeping functions and the performance of duties, as required in §§ 11.323, 11.329, and 11.333, the service must be documented as having been carried out under the direct supervision of the appropriate person. If the required sea service is associated with the performance of duties, as required in §§ 11.470, 11.472, and 11.474, the service must be documented as having been carried out under the supervision of the appropriate person.
(6) An applicant who has been acting as a pilot may submit a letter from a pilot's association attesting to the applicant's sea service. For those pilots seeking to renew a radar observer endorsement, the association's letter should indicate that the vessels piloted were equipped with radar, and that radar was used by the pilot for navigation and collision avoidance purposes. Pilots not part of an association may submit other relevant records indicating service, such as billing forms. For a raise-of-grade, pilots must comply with the requirements of paragraph (a)(2) of this section.
(3) Service on vessels to which STCW applies, whether inland or coastwise, will be credited on a day-for-day basis. For establishing credit for sea service, the waters of the Inside Passage between Puget Sound and Cape Spencer, Alaska will be credited for a near-coastal and STCW endorsement.
(d) Sea service as a member of the Armed Forces of the United States and civilian service on vessels owned by the United States as required experience.
(1) Sea service as a member of the Armed Forces of the United States will be accepted as required experience for an original, raise of grade, renewal, or increase in scope of all endorsements. In most cases, military sea service will have been performed upon ocean waters; however, inland service, as may be the case on smaller vessels, will be credited in the same manner as conventional evaluations. The applicant must submit an official transcript of sea service or history of assignments as verification of the service claimed when the application is submitted. A DD-214 is not acceptable evidence of sea service. The applicant must also provide the Coast Guard with other necessary information as to tonnage, routes, propulsion power, percentage of time underway, and assigned duties upon the vessels on which he or she served. Such service will be evaluated by the Coast Guard for a determination of its equivalence to sea service acquired on merchant vessels and the appropriate grade, class, and limit of endorsement for which the applicant is eligible. Normally, 60 percent of the total time onboard is considered equivalent underway service; however, the periods of operation of each vessel may be evaluated separately. In order to be eligible for a master's or chief engineer's unlimited endorsement, the applicant must have acquired military service in the capacity of commanding officer or engineer officer, respectively.
(2) Applicants for management-level, operational-level or support-level STCW endorsements must demonstrate competence in accordance with part 11, subpart C; part 12, subpart F; and part 13, subpart F of this subchapter.
(3) Service in deck ratings on military vessels such as seaman apprentice, seaman, boatswain's mate, quartermaster, or Radarman/Operations Specialist are considered deck service for the purposes of this part. Service in other ratings may be considered if the applicant establishes that his or her duties required a watchstanding presence on or about the bridge of a vessel. Service in engineer ratings on military vessels such as fireman apprentice, fireman, engineman, machinists mate, machinery technician, or boiler tender are considered engineer service for the purposes of this part. There are also other ratings such as electrician, hull technician, or damage controlman, which may be credited when the applicant establishes that his or her duties required watchstanding duties in an operating engine room.
(4) In addition to service on vessels that get underway regularly, members of the Armed Forces may obtain creditable service for assignment to vessels that get underway infrequently, such as tenders and repair vessels. Normally, a 25-percent factor is applied to these time periods. This experience can be equated with general shipboard familiarity, training, ship's business, and other related duties.
(5) Sea service obtained on submarines is creditable, as if it were surface vessel service, for deck and engineer officer and qualified ratings endorsements under the provision of paragraph (a) of this section. For application for deck officer and qualified ratings endorsements, submarine service may be creditable if at least 25 percent of all service submitted for the endorsement was obtained on surface vessels (e.g. if 4 years' total service were submitted for an original officer endorsement, at least 1 year must have been obtained on surface craft in order for the submarine service to be eligible for evaluation).
(6) Service gained in a civilian capacity as commanding officer, master, mate, engineer, or pilot, etc., of any vessel owned and operated by the United States, in any service in which a license or officer endorsement as master, mate, engineer, or pilot was not required at the time of such service, will be evaluated by the Coast Guard for a determination of equivalence.
(e) Sea service on vessels that do not get underway. This requirement applies to service obtained on vessels mandated by the Certificate of Inspection (COI) which are in operation but do not get underway or occasionally get underway for short voyages. Service while the vessel is not underway must be credited as follows:
(1) Engineering department. Service may be credited day-for-day for up to 50 percent of the service credit for renewal, raise of grade, and original issue for each day the engineering plant is operational.
(2) Deck department. Service may be credited as follows:
(ii) Renewal. Service in any capacity in the deck department is creditable as closely related service under § 10.227(e)(1)(iv). When submitted in combination with underway service, service is creditable on a 3-for-1 basis (12 months of experience equals 4 months of creditable service) for up to 6 months of service credit.
(f) Foreign sea service.
(1) Experience and service acquired on foreign vessels is creditable for establishing eligibility for an original or renewal of an officer, rating, or STCW endorsement, subject to evaluation by the Coast Guard to determine that it is a fair and reasonable equivalent to service acquired on merchant vessels of the United States with respect to grade, tonnage, horsepower, waters, and operating conditions. This experience and service is also creditable to meet recency requirements.
(2) Experience and service acquired on foreign vessels while holding a valid U.S. endorsement is creditable for establishing eligibility for a raise of grade of an officer, rating, or STCW endorsement, subject to evaluation as specified in paragraph (d)(1) of this section. This experience and service is also creditable to meet recency requirements.
(3) An applicant who has obtained qualifying experience on foreign vessels must submit satisfactory documentary evidence of such service (including any necessary official translation to the English language) in accordance with paragraph (a)(1) and (a)(2) of this section.
(g) Closely related service. The Coast Guard may accept evidence of employment in a position closely related to the operation, construction, or repair of vessels (either deck or engineer as appropriate) as meeting the sea service requirements for renewal under § 10.227(e)(1)(iv). Service as port engineer, port captain, shipyard superintendent, qualified instructor, or similar related service may be creditable for service for raise of grade of an engineer or deck officer endorsement; however, it may not be used for obtaining an original management-level endorsement. The service is creditable as follows:
(1) Port engineer, port captain or shipyard superintendent experience is creditable on a 3-for-1 basis for a raise of grade (e.g., 12 months of experience equals 4 months of creditable service). For a raise-of-grade, this credit is limited to 6 months of service.
(2) Service as a qualified instructor in a Coast Guard approved course or a training program is creditable on a 2-for-1 basis for a raise of grade (e.g., 12 months of experience equals 6 months of creditable service). For a raise-of-grade, this credit is limited to 6 months of service.
(3) On vessels of less than 100 GRT, a day is considered as 8 hours unless the Coast Guard determines that the vessel's operating schedule makes this criterion inappropriate; in no case will this period be less than 4 hours.
(i) Tonnage equivalency. For the purpose of parts 10, 11 and 12, 200 GRT will be considered equivalent to 500 GT, and 1,600 GRT will be considered equivalent to 3,000 GT.