MMAP Proposes: SBT ON SIMULATOR
The Masters and Mates Association of the Phil (MMAP) proposes a Sea-time Reduction Plan using Structured Simulator-Based Cadetship Training Program (SRPSSCTP). This was at the round-table discussions at MARINA Region IV in Batangas City last March 19th.
MMAP Secretary Rodolfo Aspillaga made the presentation for the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and the Coast Guard (PCG), to consider whether relevant to the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Presidential Executive Order 63-2018 on shipboard training (SBT) requirements.
The 12-month mandatory SBT requirement for maritime degree courses (BSMT and BSMarE) may be reduced, given that most overseas contracts are only for nine to 10 months only. The expense and the lack of slots on board discourage mariners to aspire as officers, content to remain crew and ratings.
The sea-time reduction scheme is practiced already in India, Hong Kong, US-CG aided by simulators, accepted by the STCW Convention as SBT.
In 2011, Stephen Cross claims, “Simulator environment allows cadets to practice skills competences that he/she would take a longer time to obtain, especially with the trend of short sailing times and shorter port-stays”.
Cross continues, “The main idea behind sea-time is that seafarers earn all the skills they need un-structurally to be qualified as an officer of charge, according to their working level. Sea-time remission is simply transforming training from unstructured to structured.”
In 1994, Marine Safety Intl suggests “30 days of sea time be replaced by 40 hours of simulator time” with a performance level of 50% equaling the level after practical SBT.
The Nautical Institute in the same year believes sea service equivalency should be limited to one week for one month at sea. STCW forces trainees to a period of 12/18 months at sea before accepting them as officers responsible for navigation/engineer watch.
PCG-Batangas LCdr Geoffrey Espaldon observes cadets show limitations, rooted both on shortcomings of students and PCG. Thus, discussions on EO 63 is very timely; cadets need help on the TRB for PCG to sign the crew list.
MARINA Region 4 OIC Sharon De Chavez-Aledo adds the STCW-MARINA Manila Office should be involved as”…the ones privy in the formulation” of EO 63 and its IRR. Aledo even wishes to speak to the Deputy on Administration-Operations and the Administrator.
Rule V of the STCW Convention defines control procedures.
Section 8.1, MARINA and PCG shall jointly control seafarers calling on Phil ports are certificated or with appropriate STCW dispensations, without prejudice to PCG Port State control.
Section 8.2, PCG shall verify Filipino cadets on SBT:
- Receive systematic practical training and experience in the tasks
- Officers supervise and monitor cadets on SBT
- Perform watchkeeping duties under a Master/Qualified Officer
- Documented on the Training Record Book (TRB) or similar record
Section 8.3, MARINA and PCG shall jointly issue the corresponding policy detailing control procedures and guidelines in the verification of certificates of seafarers and Filipino cadets on SBT without prejudice to the Port State Control functions of the PCG.
MMAP Pres. Edwin Itable exhorts, “Let us be genuine and real…”
The captain says the TRB is being abused and exploited. He emphasizes that “… a proper assessment requires a proper TRB.” Without a credible TRB, all other reporting are suspect.