46 CFR 15.610 - Master and mate (pilot) of uninspected towing vessels.
(a) The requirements in this section apply to towing vessels, except for -
(1) Towing vessels that are subject to subchapter M in accordance with § 136.105 of this chapter;
(2) Towing vessels that are seagoing and 300 gross or more tons subject to the provisions of subchapter I of this chapter;
(3) Towing vessels that are inspected under other subchapters of this chapter that may perform occasional towing; and
(b) Except as provided in this paragraph, every towing vessel of at least 8 meters (26 feet) in length, measured from end to end over the deck (excluding sheer), must be under the direction and control of a person holding a license or MMC officer endorsement as master or mate (pilot) of towing vessels, or as master or mate of vessels of greater than 200 GRT, holding either an endorsement on his or her license or MMC for towing vessels or a completed Towing Officer Assessment Record (TOAR) signed by a designated examiner indicating that the officer is proficient in the operation of towing vessels. This requirement does not apply to any vessel engaged in assistance towing.
(c) Any towing vessel operating in the pilotage waters of the Lower Mississippi River must be under the control of an officer meeting the requirements of paragraph (b) of this section who holds either a first-class pilot's endorsement for that route or MMC officer endorsement for the Western Rivers, or who meets the requirements of paragraph (b) of this section and meets the requirements of either paragraph (c)(1) or (2) of this section as applicable:
(1) To operate a towing vessel with tank barges, or a tow of barges carrying hazardous materials regulated under subchapters N or O of this chapter, an officer in charge of the towing vessel must have completed 12 roundtrips over this route as an observer, with at least three of those trips during hours of darkness, and provide evidence to the Coast Guard that at least one of the 12 roundtrips was completed within the last 5 years.
(2) To operate a towing vessel without barges, or a tow of uninspected barges, an officer in charge of the towing vessel must have completed at least four round trips over this route as an observer, with at least one of those trips during hours of darkness, and provide evidence to the Coast Guard that at least one of the four roundtrips was within the last 5 years.