STCW Manila Ammendments explained.
The International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (or STCW), 1978 was adopted in 1978 by conference at the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in London, and entered into force in 1984. The Convention was significantly amended in 1995 and again in 2010. The 2010 amendments are also referred to as "The Manila Amendments".
These amendments were necessary to keep training standards in line with new technological and operational requirements that require new shipboard competencies. The Manila Amendments came into effect as of 1 January 2012. However, there is a transition period until 2017 when all seafarers must be certified and trained according to the new standards. Implementation is progressive, every year a modified set of requirements comes into force. The most significant amendments are:
>New rest hours for seafarers (into force as of Jan 1, 2012)
>Certificate of Competence (COP) for Able seaman (deck and engine, electro-technical)
>New and updated training, refreshing requirement
>Mandatory security training (into force as of Jan 1st, 2014)
>Additional medical standards
>Specific Alcohol limits in blood or breath.
How do those changes affect you?
Upon renewal of your COC you will have to meet the new requirements, including new refresher training, before your COC can be renewed. At present (Sept 2013) MARINA still has not completed guidelines for Management Level Courses those courses are still not in line with STCW-2010. Because of this COC's presently issued are only valid until December 31, 2016 only. Be aware that come 2017 all those Certificates will have to be renewed at the same time and there will be an enormous backlog in certificates to be issued. It is therefor advisable that in case your COC expires on Dec 31, 2016 to start renewal well before that date.
All Seafarers on board after Dec 31, 2013 need to have undergone Security Training in line with the 2010 Convention. This can be either:
1. Ship Security Officer (SSO)
2. Security Training for Seafarers with designated Security Duties (SDSD)
3. Security Awareness Training (SAT)
Seafarers with SSO do not need SDSD or SAT.
Seafarers without SSO training should have either SAT (in case they are not involved in Security duties) or SDSD training. As most seafarers on board cargo vessels are involved in Security duties one way or antoher they must have at least SDSD. Upto July only SA training was available in the Philippines. At present the SAT/SDSD training if offered as one training. Be aware that the training centre where you obtain your SAT/SDSD training must be accredited by the Flagstate of the ship you are going to serve on.
On Sept 2 MARINA published Circular 2013-009 plus annex indicating that unitl Jan-1-2014 Seafarers with at least 6 months seatime in the three years preceding Jan 1, 2012 can apply for the SAT/SDSD Certificate of Proficiency (COP) without having to undergo training (see provision 10.1 and 10.2 MARINA Circular 2013-009). However the same Circular has a contradiction as far as the SDSD COP is concerned. In the Annex with the circular the requirements still show that SDSD training is required. Avior is presently checking with MARINA to get clarifiction on this contradiction. Please note that the seatime application can only be used until Jan 1, 2014. The full text of MARINA CIRCULAR 2013-009 and annex can be downloaded in the LINKS & DOWNLOAD.