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Old 11-06-2020, 09:52   #16
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

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So BEWARE--that license means very little other than showing some competency in reading material and taking a test.
Agreed. No different than a college diploma. A degree in Business Administration does not qualify a person as anything other than an entry level position. The exam-prep class in my previous post had a pair of guys who worked on a small barge drilling piles for private docks in San Francisco Bay. They had a ton of legitimate sea time, but it wasn't relevant for what most folks are looking for in a licensed delivery captain. Despite that, their plan was to buy a boat and get into chartering of some sort.

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Old 11-06-2020, 10:54   #17
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

In New Zealand we have no requirement to have any type of licence unless the boat is commercial or of a certain size beyond my budget. I do think the licence a good idea as some of what I see is pure and simple chaos. I have headed toward vessels on their port side with me veering slightly starboard only to have them cut in front of me passing to my starboard side. A simple rule that should at least be obeyed in a busy waterway. I have two tickets here through the local coast guard that I have had for some time. One covers these rules and basic seamanship called day sailor the other is called costal navigation. I found myself recently still flouting the rules (unintentionally) as I was sailing upwind in the opposite tack of another sailboat. I had the wind to my Port side and he the wind to his starboard side. The occurrence of an upwind cross so close in cruising is so rare I remember the rule as the boat with the wind to port has the right of way. Of course it is the opposite that is true. The guy sailing the other boat graciously ducked under my tail but I could see he was less than happy. This was my error and if his skill was not up to par we may have touched but there was still several meters of room luckily. This demonstrates the rules should be learned as even after learning them there are still times they are foggy in your head. Especially ones not used too often. I would say there should be a minimum requirement for some type of licencing. As for sea time I don't know. I am on the fence here. I started sailing about 50 years ago and just bought a boat, figured out how the flappy cloth things worked and started visiting places. It was not long before I was sailing off and onto my mooring. I cannot say I have ever had the fastest speeds my many boats since then could do. I am more of a set, forget and make anouther coffee guy. When the target is 600 miles away who cares?
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Old 11-06-2020, 11:03   #18
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

Yes, there is.

One loop hole is that you can attest to time served on a boat you own.

Another is training programs/instructors who will sign off on Sea Service forms for their students on boats the school/instructor owns. One school was busted for that by the USCG years ago, but it still goes on.
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Old 11-06-2020, 13:00   #19
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

Hi Finnegan. While now retired I was the science dept. head at a few independent boarding high schools. During that time I taught a marine biology course and would have the kids learn SCUBA during the course. Anyway, the highlight of the course was to do a Spring break charter on one or two sailboats in the BVI, captained by me with another faculty sailor on board and sometimes accompanied by a dive instructor. I never had a problem getting a bareboat due to my decent charter resume and owner/skipper experience of a 30' vessel. One time even a high school student with solid racing skipper experience was the second vessel captain. Parents of the students never insisted on our having a licensed captain. That saved lots of $. And once a charter company checked me out on the water it was good to go for future charters. My favorite charter company was Conch Charters in the BVI. They have older boats so they had no worries about messy students and a few scratches here and there. So if you've chartered a few times perhaps you won't have a problem without hiring a captain. Hope this helps.
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Old 11-06-2020, 13:20   #20
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

I have always been skeptical of professional licensing in general even though I have had a wallet full of them. MMC Master, Power & Sail, Airline Transport Pilot with 5 type ratings, Flight Engineer Turbojet, Flight Instructor (Multi-engine, Instrument), Ground Instructor (Advanced), Airline Check Airman and Real Estate Broker, to fall back on when I got furloughed.

I found people of questionable training and ability in all of the above areas and also amongst licensed doctors, lawyers and contractors of every description.

There is no easy answer to this problem. In the US both the Coast Guard and FAA have stopped administering practical tests and rely solely on stated experience and written test results. Practical testing previously done by both agencies, in order to reduce government liability, is now conducted by for-profit making schools and designee examiners.
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Old 11-06-2020, 13:52   #21
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

Tough to fudge on a RYA exam and/or credentials..but I’m sure someone has tried..

https://www.rya.org.uk/courses-train...chtmaster.aspx

..but if a choice between a USCG licensed or Professional RYA...
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:02   #22
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

Maybe a stupid question. How many students. If over six you may be better off without the license from a legal aspect.
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:11   #23
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

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Tough to fudge on a RYA exam and/or credentials..but I’m sure someone has tried..

https://www.rya.org.uk/courses-train...chtmaster.aspx

..but if a choice between a USCG licensed or Professional RYA...
While the USCG sea time is self provided, it's not a total farce. You have to provide the vessel name, owner, documentation or registration number, tonnage, dimensions, and dates. A day is 4 hours or more. Fabricating 360 days (oupv) or 720 days (100t) has to pass a sniff test or the examiner will cry BS and kick you to the curb.

While I appreciate the RYA has a practical component, it looks a helluva lot easier to aquire than even an OUPV and has no commercial endorsement.

Whoever said the USCG exam was easy was wrong. Some of it is esoteric but much is useful. It's a proctered exam that even those who committed a fair chunk of change and 2 weeks of class time manage to fail.

Not fully defending USCG licenses, and there are ways to get the license without knowing much (as there are in many fields). But to say it's useless is an exaggeration that few who have the license and endorsements would agree with.
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:25   #24
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

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Bear in mind a "6 pack" license was originally created for the launch driver at a yacht club to ferry "yachtsmen" to and from their moored boats.

It is a simple test with very little experience requirement.

M
Actually, NOT true. “Launch Tender” is still a license, and is a still pretty simple test compared to OUPV license. The “6PAC” test is (and always has been!) drawn from the same questions as the 100TON test, there are just fewer questions used.

Who makes this stuff up? The internet is full of “stuff”
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:27   #25
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

I remember a large charter boat that moved between US east coast and the USVI seasonaly. Two of the girls who worked in the galley wrote and passed the exam. Got their "captains licence"
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:49   #26
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Yes, there is.

One loop hole is that you can attest to time served on a boat you own.

Another is training programs/instructors who will sign off on Sea Service forms for their students on boats the school/instructor owns. One school was busted for that by the USCG years ago, but it still goes on.
I'm glad they got busted.
CG should require you to personally take your own logbooks to the exam for verification of self claimed sea time. I don't have any license, but it would be hard to fake anything like my own salt water and coffee stained dog eared logs with some entries barely readable due to writing them in rough sea conditions!
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:49   #27
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Yes, there is.

One loop hole is that you can attest to time served on a boat you own.

Another is training programs/instructors who will sign off on Sea Service forms for their students on boats the school/instructor owns. One school was busted for that by the USCG years ago, but it still goes on.
I also (used to) teach the OUPV and 100 GT courses. Everything posted here previously is pretty much correct. The biggest weakness in the system is the self reporting of sea time on your own boat. You only have to prove you owned the boat and the CG pretty much has to accept whatever you submit as long as it looks reasonable. Just don't try to tell them you did 720 days in two calendar years or even four. Longer of you're up here in the cold and four to six month boating seasons. The exams are quite comprehensive, and while we do definitely teach to the exam, there's enough stuff there, least the way we did it, that of you absorbed enough to get enough right answers, you did learn a lot. As to the instructors cheating with sea time or exam results, the CG actively monitors the schools, even to the point of putting spies in the classes. They don't get away with much and one of the schools I used to work for just got their approval revoked.
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:53   #28
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

Maybe not entirely relevant to the OP question but if you get a 50 ton or 100 ton Master License, you are not a qualified officer or deckhand unless you take additional hands on training and pass the STCW tests, which include safety and fire training.

With just a straight up "Captain"s license, if you don't own the boat, you are qualified to take tickets, cook and wash bottles. You are not qualified to be an officer, run communications, RADAR or much else.

There is always another course to take...
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:55   #29
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

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I remember a large charter boat that moved between US east coast and the USVI seasonaly. Two of the girls who worked in the galley wrote and passed the exam. Got their "captains licence"
Whoever signed off on that sea time was wrong. If they only worked in the galley, they were not "Deck Department" and that time should not have counted. If they also had deck duties when not cooking, then it would be valid.
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Old 11-06-2020, 14:59   #30
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Re: USCG Six Pack license sea time fraud

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Originally Posted by StoneCrab View Post
Maybe not entirely relevant to the OP question but if you get a 50 ton or 100 ton Master License, you are not a qualified officer or deckhand unless you take additional hands on training and pass the STCW tests, which include safety and fire training.

With just a straight up "Captain"s license, if you don't own the boat, you are qualified to take tickets, cook and wash bottles. You are not qualified to be an officer, run communications, RADAR or much else.

There is always another course to take...
Depends on the route. Up here in the Great Lakes, none of those extra certificates are required by the CG on a "T-Boat" (up to 100 GT and 150 passengers) by the CG. The ship owners may have more requirements. STCW is required for off shore or near coastal routes on some vessels.
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