Also known as a captain or master the ship master has ultimate power and is responsible for the taking all decisions on board the vessel under his control. It is a well known fact that to be able to organize and get work done properly and efficiently there must be a head that can supervise and control action as they are being done. Each industry, organization or group must have one person who carries the utmost power and control.
On a marine vessel he is known as the captain and he too has to follow a set of rules that qualifies him as a captain. Below is a table of experience a seaman requires before Appling for a captains license and certification needed to maintain the title Ship Master/ Captain.
|Ship Master||Min 3 yrs||Minimum of 3 yrs continues work at lower ranks and passing of an examination.|
|Chief Mate||365 days||Work at the position of second mate for minimum of 365 days before promotion to chief mate.|
|Second Mate||365 days||Work at the third mate position for min 365 days before promotion to second mate.|
|Third Mate||365 days||Receive specialized training and accumulation of sea time before receiving the third mate license.|
|Specialized Training||365 days min||Do specialized training and accumulate sea hours before doing a final exam that will determine if you have qualified for third mate title.|
The above positions must be attained on the on deck crew; if the person has worked on other crews on the ship he must begin again from the lowest rank and work his way up again. For those who do make it to the captain rank they require to pass a final written license examination as well as an accompanied voyage examination by a experience captain to observe his skills while at sea in regards of managing his new responsibilities on board.
There are different captain licenses categories for smaller vessels, specialized vessels, and international sailing vessels among more. Each has the same initial set of rules to attain with added experience and licensing for the specialized licenses.
Vessels size and destination means that not all Ship masters earn the same. The highest paid captains (international vessels) receive between 4-500 dollars per day where as the lowery paid captains (inland and ferry captains) receive approximately 130 dollars a day. Each different vessel has its own captain’s pay depending on his experience and distance traveled.
Later we shall be discussing other aspects of the ship master in different articles which will tell of his uniform, implementation of law out in the high sea, among other aspects that have not been discussed in this article.