USCG has issued a notice to all mariners serving on vessels subject to the STCW Convention to remind that 2010 amendments to the STCW Convention will come into force on January 1, 2017.
The notice specifies the requirements that will become effective January 1, 2017 and includes information about STCW gap closing requirements; Electronic Chart Display Information Systems (ECDIS) limitations; Renewal of certain STCW endorsements on or after January 1, 2017; Qualified Assessor (QA)
STCW Gap Closing Requirements
Gap closing requirements are additional training requirements that must be met to facilitate full compliance with the STCW Convention by January 1, 2017. Mariners with an operationalor management-level STCW endorsement will not be able to renew their endorsement after December 31, 2016, without meeting the additional training and assessment requirements (see the Notice below)
A limitation of “not valid for service on ECDIS equipped vessels” will be placed on STCW deck officer endorsements if evidence of required ECDIS training is not provided after January 1, 2017. This limitation or the limitation “Not valid for service on ECDIS equipped vessels after December 31, 2016” can be removed at any time, free of charge, by submitting a credential application (CG-719B) requesting a modification and including your course completion certificate.
Renewal of Certain STCW Endorsements on or after January 1, 2017
There are new requirements that will take effect the first time a mariner renews an MMC with STCW endorsements on or after January 1, 2017. Renewal of basic training, advanced firefighting, and proficiency in survival craft requires evidence of revalidation training, refresher training, or a retake of the original training course.
Qualified Assessor (QA)
All assessments of competence for STCW endorsements must be signed by a Coast Guardapproved QA in accordance with 46 CFR 11.301(a)(1)(i) and 12.601(b)(1)(i). QAs must be approved by the Coast Guard either individually or as part of a Coast Guard-approved or accepted course or training program, as described in NVIC 19-14.
NVIC 02-14, (Grandfathering and Transitional Provisions for Merchant Mariner Credentials), Enclosure (2), allows for the acceptance of STCW assessments, performed for and signed by an assessor not approved by the Coast Guard, until December 31, 2016. Such an assessor must meet the professional requirements in 46 CFR 10.405(a)(3) to determine competence for the specific endorsement.
The Coast Guard is aware that as a result of the limited number of approved QAs, there may be a hardship on mariners trying to complete STCW assessments after December 31, 2106. In consideration of this, the Coast Guard will continue to allow STCW assessments to be signed by an assessor who meets the requirements specified in NVIC 02-14 until December 31, 2017. These assessments must be submitted to the Coast Guard as part of a complete application no later than June 30, 2018