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STCW Refresher Training - What do you need to know

All News Events Courses General News Sunday, 15th September 2019

 published 15th September 2019

 This is to remind all seafarers about the STCW refresher/updating training, as it's starting to get quieter after a busy season for most of you, working in the maritime industry and now have a bit of time to rest, recharge your batteries, but also check your documentation and update your training and medicals. 

The Manila amendments to the STCW Convention and Code were adopted on 25 June 2010, marking a major revision of the STCW Convention and Code. The 2010 amendments entered into force on 1 January 2012 under the tacit acceptance procedure and are aimed at bringing the Convention and Code up to date with developments since they were initially adopted  and to enable them to address issues that are anticipated to emerge in the foreseeable future. This information is specifically about new training requirements for all seafarers.

Update training

If you are serving onboard ship or applying for a UK CoC, and are qualified in any of the following, from the 1st January 2017 you should have documentary evidence of either having completed the training course or updated your training within the last 5 years for;

  • Personal Survival Techniques (PST) STCW code (Table A-VI/1-1)
  • Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting (FP&FF) STCW code (Table A-VI/1-2)
  • Proficiency in Survival Craft and Rescue Boats other than fast rescue boats (PSC&RB) STCW code (Table A-VI/2-1)
  • Proficiency in Fast Rescue Boats (PFRB) STCW code (Table A-VI/2-2)
  • Advanced Fire Fighting (AFF) STCW code (Table A-VI/3)

You will be required to hold these certificates, with either the original issued in the preceeding 5 years, or completed updated training in the preceding 5 years, in order to work at sea. You do not need to submit these certificates to the Seafarer Training and Certification Branch in Southampton unless you are required to send them with an application.

Please Note

The IMO Circular (MSC.1/Circ.1560) has asked Port State Control Officers (PSCO) to take a pragmatic approach to the requirement for seafarers to hold updated certification onboard the vessel as per the 2010 Manila amendments up until the 1st July 2017. It cannot be guaranteed that PSCOs will not take action. Seafarers without the required Certification are advised to take a copy of the Circular with them onboard the vessel.

Please see here for a copy of the circular MSC.1/Circ.1560 Advice where not all seafarers carry certificates and endorsements meeting the 2010 manila amendments to (STCW) convention and code from January 2017 

If you are applying for a new or to upgrade/revalidate a CoC you must still meet requirements detailed in section 5 of MIN 535

Tables showing which updating training is required for the holders of CoCs and Certificates of Proficiency (CoP) are available in MSN 1865 (Annex A, pages 12 to 14). MCA approved training centres conducting refresher training and seafarers requiring this training should refer to MIN 535 (M) for further information.

Revalidation of CoCs

Seafarers revalidating their certificates of competency (CoC) after 31 December 2016 will need to submit additional evidence to make sure their certificate is valid for service on certain types of ships.

More information about these requirements can be found in MSN 1861 (M)

Please note that your CoC will remain valid until the date of expiry printed in it, the requirements for revalidation are changing from the 1st of January 2017. After this date you will be required to provide the relevant updated training certificates with your revalidation application.

Information on the training certificates that require updating for an application, and where the MCA can accept these Certificates issued from, can be found in Section 5 of MIN 535.

High Voltage Training

If you cannot demonstrate an MCA Approved or Accepted High Voltage Course Certificate then your CoC will be limited as ‘“From the 1 January 2017 this certificate is not valid for service on ships fitted with High Voltage (over 1000V) systems”.

In order to remove this limitation you will need to submit your CoC, relevant High Voltage Course Certificate and the Replacement CoC Application Form MSF 4299

Alternatively you can have the limitation removed when you next revalidate or gain a new CoC.

ECDIS Training

If you cannot demonstrate an MCA Approved or Accepted ECDIS Generic Training Certificate then your CoC will be limited as ““From the 1 January 2017 this certificate is not valid for service on ships fitted with ECDIS”..

In order to remove this limitation you will need to submit your CoC, relevant ECDIS Course Certificate and the Replacement CoC Application Form MSF 4299

Alternatively you can have the limitation removed when you next revalidate or gain a new CoC.

Security training

Find out more about the new requirements for security training for shipboard personnel in MSN 1865

Human element, leadership and management training (HELM)

Information about HELM can be found in the following marine shipping noticies, each M Notice is specific to the type of certificate you are applying for.

  • MSN 1856 for deck merchant navy officers (section 10.4, page 12)
  • MSN 1857 for engine merchant navy (section 6.5, page 17)
  • MSN 1858 for deck yacht officers (section 5.7, page 12 )
  • MSN 1859 for engineer yacht officers (section 6.2, page 11 )
  • MSN 1860 for electro-technical officers (section 7.6, page 10)

Please note that HELM is required for gaining or upgrading a CoC. HELM is not required for revalidation of existing CoCs. This information can be found in Secion 8.5 (page 9) of MSN 1861

Electro technical officer (ETO) certificates

Information about the UK requirements for gaining an electro-technical officer Licence can be found in MSN 1860

MSF 4259 is the application form for an oral examination leading to the issue of a certificate of competency (STCW) for electro technical officers.

Information for training providers regarding basic and advanced tanker endorsements.

MCA approved training centres conducting tanker training, and seafarers who need to obtain a tanker endorsement should refer to MIN 535 (M) and MSN 1866 

Please let us know if you have any questions and wish to book on our refresher training which we run here, at Red Ensign on a regular basis. In particular, the STCW Basic Refresher training: Personal Survival Techniques (PST) and Fire Prevention & Fire fighting every week, when refreshers can join our basic group and update their basic training over 3 days. 

Check out the 2-day STCW Basic Refresher training here

For other modules to suit your needs please check our list of courses here

Any questions, please do get in touch by calling us on +44 (0)1983 294088 or email admin@redensigntraining.com

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