Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal, West Coast
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Re: HMS Bounty in trouble...
Unregulated capitalism? ...
Let's see if they were operating within the limits of the regulations that do exist. I highly suspect we are going to learn they were not, but let's see. If not, writing more won't obviously make much difference, will it.
p.s. "uninspected vessel" is a term of art in USCG certificates and doesn't mean you are free to do whatever you want.
It seems that in this case all was legal and it is the legislation that has big holes that allow these boats to exist and sail without being inspected, being considered as an private yacht that can carry only 12 passengers. I don't know the US law, but these guys seem to know
when MCA goes away for any and all "yachts" over 500grt and they become "ships" under SOLAS...will that ever happen?
Unfortunately, no. In my opinion, the MCA hangs onto the yacht licensing scheme as an income stream. It is years beyond the point where it should have been abandoned and I also blame the IMO for allowing the MCA to describe yacht limited licenses as having the same STCW code as legitimate licenses.
I have been repetitively using the term Sail Training Vessels but in reality these are simply private yachts run as a tax deductible non profit, for dreamers and using a loophole in the manning and operations regs to make it work. Look on the bounty web site. It lists ways to get sailing trips in with the vessel. And do you really think they just took 12 pax? Heck no. there were...... a whole bunch of trainees! (who paid for the privilege.
Ask yourself honestly, Is this industry viable? really? If so, then I (an a couple thousand other people) must have read it wrong. I have yet to find (out of 6 attempts) a Sailing Vessel or Yacht or both graduate who has been successful entering my industry. There may be some. But not alot and none that I have seen....
You bring up a very interesting observation here. Technically a STV carries a certified crew and a group of uncertified trainees which cannot exceed . STVs have COIs so they do have a minimum complement of mates and able seamen but the BOUNTY was not an STV and so did not have any minimum safe manning determination from the Coast Guard other that 46CFR15.605 which only mandates a master and a mate but sets no requirements for ABs, OSs, engineeers or anybody so by theory an uninspected 12pax <300grt can carry a crew of 100 uncertified "volunteer crew" and 12 "paying passengers" as long as there are enough lifesaving appliances for all of these persons onboard, but who is a volunteer and who is a passenger? Provided the vessel is under 200 tons then STCW would not apply so no basic safety training for anybody (but the BOUNTY was more than 200grt so I guess the crew must have had BST certificates).
THERE APPEARS TO BE A LOOPHOLE IN THE REGULATIONS HERE LARGE ENOUGH TO DRIVE AN M1A1 ABRAHAMS TANK THROUGH!
For T boats, volunteers, that do not meet the qualification to be legally considered crew, are passengers. Any crew, paid or not must meet the same requirements.
STV's and attraction vessels have different standards.
STV standards are clear and easy to understand in the CFR's. Attraction vessels have much less oversight.
I'm not talking about T boats or SSV/STV's or attraction vessels...I'm talking about Subchapter C uninspected 12 passenger vessel (>100grt but <300grt ) which is exactly what the BOUNTY was! The BOUNTY was not inspected as a Sail Training Vessel under 46CFR subchapter R but was a subchapter C uninspected 12 passenger vessel...big difference!
In Europe all coastal yachts and offshore yachts of any size have to be inspected by the maritime authority experts normally all four years. Without a valid inspection the boat is grounded.