Captain The captain, or master, is responsible for the safe and
economical operation of the ferry in compliance with applicable
regulations. He or she is ultimately responsible for the safety of
hundreds, or sometimes even thousands of passengers. Modern
ferries are multi million dollar vessels that carry priceless cargo...
day and night, around the clock, 24/7. This means hostile sea
conditions, weather conditions and other adverse elements in
seaways that would not necessarily be considered sheltered
waters. The qualifications sought by a ferry or water taxi company
may depend on the size of a vessel, or vessels in the case of a
fleet. A captain is expected to possess managerial and leadership
skills in addition to competence in navigation, seamanship,
docking and passenger embarking and debarking procedures.
These are the qualifications that may be sought out there, in terms
of USCG licenses:

▪ 100 Ton Master
▪ 200 Ton Master  
▪ 500 Ton Master  
▪ 1600 Ton Master  

Other requirements may include GMDSS and STCW 95.

Mate The mate directly reports to the captain. Some ferry
operators have another position called assistant captain, where
the roles may look like those of a mate. Depending on the vessel,
the mate handles or oversees vessel navigation, vessel docking
operations, and assumes command of the vessel where directed
by the master. These are the USCG qualifications generally
sought for mate positions:

▪ 100 Ton Mate
▪ 200 Ton Mate  
▪ 500 Ton Mate  
▪ 1600 Ton Mate  

Other requirements may include and STCW 95.

Able Bodied Seaman, or Able Seaman The able seaman, or AB,
carries out job assignments given out by the captain or mate. This
includes docking operations and other shipboard duties. May
require STCW 95.

Deckhand The deckhand carries out job assignments given out
by the captain or mate. This includes docking operations and
other shipboard duties. May require STCW 95.

Chief Engineer The chief engineer, or chief, is in charge of the
operation and maintenance of a ferry boat’s main engines,
loading of fuel, auxiliary machinery and engineering crew. In
addition to the main engines, the chief engineer is responsible for
diesel polishing systems, fuel service and transfer systems,
generator sets, electrical distribution system, hydraulic systems,
compressed air systems, sanitation systems, service water,
heating and air conditioning plant, watermaking unit and other
auxiliaries. However, these are the USCG license qualifications
generally sought:

▪ Chief Engineer Limited
▪ Chief Engineer Unlimited

Designated Duty Engineer The designated duty engineer reports
to the chief and assists in the operation of engines, auxiliaries
and other ship systems. However, these are the USCG license
qualifications generally sought:

▪ Designated Duty Engineer

QMED QMED, or qualified member of the engine department,
carries out tasks assigned by the chief or DDE in the engine

Other requirements may include STCW 95.

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U.S. Coast Guard
Marine Safety Office
Regional Examination Centers

Eastern Alaska
800 E. Dimond Blvd., Suite 3-227
Anchorage, Alaska 99515
Phone: (907) 271-6736

Western Alaska
2760 Sherwood Lane, Suite 2A
Juneau, Alaska 99801-8545
Phone: (907) 463-2458

Southern California - Arizona, Nevada, Utah
California Center
501 W.Ocean Blvd., Suite 6200
Long Beach, CA 90802
Phone: (562) 495-1480

Northern California
California Center
Oakland Federal Bldg., North Tower
1301 Clay Street, Room 180N
Oakland, CA 94612-5200
Phone: (510) 637-1124

433 Ala Moana Blvd.
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813-4909
Phone: (808) 522-8264

Chesapeke Area - Maryland, Delaware, Virginia Area
Maryland Center
U.S. Customs House
40 South Gay Street
Baltimore, MD 21202-4022
Phone: (410) 962-5132

New England Area - Massachusetts, Rhode Island
New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine Area
Massachusetts Center
455 Commercial Street
Boston, MA 02109-1045
Phone: (617) 223-3040

Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin Area
Missouri Center
1222 Spruce Street, Suite 8.104E
St. Louis, MO 63103-2835
Phone: (314) 539-3091
Marine Safety Office
Regional Examination Centers - Cont'd)

Tri-State Area - New Jersey, New York City, Long
Connecticut, Pennsylvania Area
New York Center
Battery Park Building
1 South Street
New York, NY 10004-1466
Phone: (212) 668-7492

West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Michigan Area
Ohio Center
420 Madison Ave., Suite 700
Toledo, OH 43604
Phone: (419) 418-6010

Oregon, Idaho, Nevada Area
6767 N. Basin Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97217-3992
Phone: (503) 240-9346

Mid-Atlantic Area
Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina Area
South Carolina Center
196 Tradd Street
Charleston, South Carolina 29401-1899
Phone: (843) 720-3250

Inland of Mid-Atlantic - Kentucky, Alabama,
Tennessee Area
Tennessee Center
200 Jefferson Ave., Suite 1302
Memphis, Tennessee 38103
Phone: (901) 544-3297

South, Southwest Area - New Mexico, Oklahoma,
Arkansas Area
Texas Center
8876 Gulf Freeway, Suite 200
Houston, TX 77017-6595
Phone: (713) 948-3350

Idaho, Washington Area
Washington Center
915 Second Ave., Room 194
Seattle, WA 98174-1067
Phone: (206) 220-7327
job descriptions
Ferry Jobs - Water Taxi Jobs - Work on Ferries & Water Taxies - Maritime Employment - Maritime Jobs - Captains - Masters
- Mates - Chief Engineers - Deckhands - Able Bodied Seamen - AB's
Some other positions that
ferry operators look to fill

Pipe Fitters
Electronics Technicians
Administrative Personnels
Customer service, security,
concession positions and
other positions aboard
ferries and water taxies:

Entry level position
for working one’s way up
towards qualified deckhand
or other position

Food Sales - Concession for
the larger ferries that sell
coffee, soda, food and
snacks, these personnel
work as cooks and cashiers.
Experience in fast food
industry, short order cook or
other restaurant experience
is helpful.

Some of the shoreside
positions that arise include:

Bookkeepers and
Accountants Keep track of
company revenues and
expenses. Maintain records
for ticket sales, payroll.
Proficiency in current
software is helpful.

Human Resources, or
Personnel Staff
employee records,
performance, hiring,
termination protocol,
employee benefits.

Ticket Agents - Customer
sell tickets to
passengers and help in
other facets of customer
service, whether seeing to
the safe boarding of a
handicapped passenger or
diffusing a complaint of a
disgruntled ticket holder.
These are intensive “people
skills” positions. Ideal
candidates are people
oriented, energetic, outgoing
and have the ability to “get
things done” and keep
passengers happy, within
reasonable limits, naturally.
Depending on the
companies, they may also
use the title
, reservationist

Traffic Control Personnel

direct car traffic while
embarking and debarking

Parking Lot Personnel direct
parking lot operations

Security Personnel provide
security for ferry facilities and