(a) This section contains the requirements that an applicant must meet to qualify as a radar observer. (Part 15 of this chapter specifies who must qualify as a radar observer.)
(b) If an applicant meets the requirements of this section, one of the following Radar-Observer endorsements will be added to his or her MMC:
(1) Radar Observer (Unlimited).
(2) Radar Observer (Inland Waters and GIWW).
(3) Radar Observer (Rivers).
(c) Radar Observer (Unlimited) is valid on all waters. Radar Observer (Inland Waters and GIWW) is valid only for those waters other than the Great Lakes covered by the Inland Navigational Rules. Radar Observer (Rivers) is valid only on any river, canal, or similar body of water designated by the OCMI, but not beyond the boundary line.
(d) Except as provided by paragraphs (e) and (f) of this section, each applicant for a Radar-Observer endorsement or for renewal of an endorsement must complete the appropriate course approved by the Coast Guard, receive the appropriate certificate of training, and present the certificate to the OCMI.
(e) An applicant who possesses a Radar-Observer endorsement, resides in a remote geographic area, and can substantiate to the satisfaction of the OCMI that the applicant's absence will disrupt normal movement of commerce, or that the applicant cannot attend an approved Radar-Observer renewal course, may have his or her endorsement renewed upon successful completion of an examination administered by the Coast Guard, or by a third party acceptable to the Coast Guard.
(f) A Radar-Observer endorsement issued under this section is valid for 5 years after the month of issuance of the certificate of training from a course approved by the Coast Guard.
(g) A Radar-Observer endorsement may be renewed at any time.
(h) An applicant for renewal of a license or MMC that does not need a Radar-Observer endorsement may renew without meeting the requirements for the endorsement.
(i) An applicant seeking to raise the grade of a license or MMC endorsement or increase its scope, where the increased grade or scope requires a Radar-Observer certificate, may use an expired certificate to fulfill that requirement.