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Thread: I Just Don't Understand ITC Tonnage

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    Default I Just Don't Understand ITC Tonnage

    I hate to be one of those "help me, help me!" threads but I have to appeal to the much wiser and more intelligent mariners here on the ol' gCaptain. I just don't understand how ITC tonnage works. The only thing I know about it is that sometimes if you're lucky, by some magical potion and fairy dust your 1600-ton license can become a 3000-ton ITC license.

    Is this automatically placed on your 1600-ton license? If not, how does someone go about accomplishing this? Also, what kind of ships are up to 3000-tons ITC? Does that designation mean that I can work on any vessel up to 3000 GRT or are certain ships measured for ITC at the discretion of their owners?

    I apologize for my ignorance but this just isn't something I've had a lot of experience with but I would really like to know how it works if it would help me in my career.
    "And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by..."
    As I was a walkin' down London Road I come to Paddy West's house. He gave me a feed of "American hash" and he called it "Liverpool Scouse". He said, "There's a ship who's wantin' hands, and on 'er ye'll quickly sign! The mate is a bastard, the bos'un's worse but she will suit ye' fine!
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaddyWest2012
    I hate to be one of those "help me, help me!" threads but I have to appeal to the much wiser and more intelligent mariners here on the ol' gCaptain. I just don't understand how ITC tonnage works. The only thing I know about it is that sometimes if you're lucky, by some magical potion and fairy dust your 1600-ton license can become a 3000-ton ITC license.

    Is this automatically placed on your 1600-ton license? If not, how does someone go about accomplishing this? Also, what kind of ships are up to 3000-tons ITC? Does that designation mean that I can work on any vessel up to 3000 GRT or are certain ships measured for ITC at the discretion of their owners?

    I apologize for my ignorance but this just isn't something I've had a lot of experience with but I would really like to know how it works if it would help me in my career.
    ITC (International Convention on the Tonnage Measurement of Ships, 1969) is just a different tonnage measurement system from Gross Register Tonnage (domestic) and the only system used by most other countries. Some owners dual measure their vessels under GRT and ITC, but many new vessels are measured under ITC only, particularly in the oilfield. The definition of an OSV is not more than 500GRT or 6000GT ITC. so if a company is building a large OSV the will pretty much have to measure it ITC. 3000 ITC should be automatically placed on your 1600 GRT license, they go hand in hand. You can only work up to the limit under either system. You can't work on a vessel up to 3000 GRT if your license is limited to 1600 GRT. For example I worked on a dredge that was dual measured when put in service in 1981 the tonnages were around 2400 GRT and 2800 GT ITC so you needed an unlimited license for it. A newer (2009) OSV I worked on recently was dual measured at around 1500 GRT and 2500 GT ITC within the scope of a 1600/3000 license.
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    Default Re: I Just Don't Understand ITC Tonnage

    Quote Originally Posted by dredgeboater View Post
    ITC (International Convention on the Tonnage Measurement of Ships, 1969) is just a different tonnage measurement system from Gross Register Tonnage (domestic) and the only system used by most other countries. Some owners dual measure their vessels under GRT and ITC, but many new vessels are measured under ITC only, particularly in the oilfield. The definition of an OSV is not more than 500GRT or 6000GT ITC. so if a company is building a large OSV the will pretty much have to measure it ITC. 3000 ITC should be automatically placed on your 1600 GRT license, they go hand in hand. You can only work up to the limit under either system. You can't work on a vessel up to 3000 GRT if your license is limited to 1600 GRT. For example I worked on a dredge that was dual measured when put in service in 1981 the tonnages were around 2400 GRT and 2800 GT ITC so you needed an unlimited license for it. A newer (2009) OSV I worked on recently was dual measured at around 1500 GRT and 2500 GT ITC within the scope of a 1600/3000 license.
    Thank you for your explanation but I still have another question. Since you now need 50% of your sea-time to be over 1600-tons in order to receive an unlimited 3rd mate's license can you use ITC time over 1600-tons, but under 3000-ITC, for that or does that not count since it's still under 1600-GRT? Is it possible to use ITC tonnage to receive an unlimited 3rd mate's without a tonnage restriction (150% of the tonnage on which 50% or more of your sea time was acquired)?
    "And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by..."
    As I was a walkin' down London Road I come to Paddy West's house. He gave me a feed of "American hash" and he called it "Liverpool Scouse". He said, "There's a ship who's wantin' hands, and on 'er ye'll quickly sign! The mate is a bastard, the bos'un's worse but she will suit ye' fine!
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaddyWest2012

    Thank you for your explanation but I still have another question. Since you now need 50% of your sea-time to be over 1600-tons in order to receive an unlimited 3rd mate's license can you use ITC time over 1600-tons, but under 3000-ITC, for that or does that not count since it's still under 1600-GRT? Is it possible to use ITC tonnage to receive an unlimited 3rd mate's without a tonnage restriction (150% of the tonnage on which 50% or more of your sea time was acquired)?
    The line between limited and unlimited is either 1600 GRT or 3000 GT ITC so anything under 3000 GT ITC is limited tonnage time. 50% of your sea service for an unlimited license needs to be on vessels over 1600 GRT (or 3000 ITC) not just 1600 tons under either system. It is possible to use time on a vessel measured under ITC for a unlimited 3M license as long as it is over 3000 GT ITC.
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    This is a very confusing topic. Around 1965 or so The Coast Guard came up with the gross tonnage rules Concerning the measurement of vessels tonnage. What used to be a very straightforward method of measuring the tonnage of a vessel was simple. The architect would simply determine how many cubic feet of water your vessel displaced divided by 100 ft. and that would be the tonnage of the vessel.

    Then along came the architects. I don't know how or why this happened. A new formula was made to measure boats called admeasuring and basically they changed the formula the way the numbers would be calculated. Almost any vessel you've been on you seen evidence of the doors between passageways that are bolted onto a flat plate which is bolted on to a bulkhead. bulkhead doors which are watertight doors which go outside are bolted onto bulkheads. This is how the entire US measuring system was followed until recently.

    I am not certain how it happened, But I believe it started with the Panama Canal. The Tariff to go to the canal is based upon vessel tonnage. The canal realize that these tonnages that the vessels were reporting werent the actual tonnages of the vessels, they were this manipulated tonnage. The Panama Canal wanted their full price from everyone.
    So now, to bring the US into parity with the rest of the world we are ( slowly, grudgingly) being dragged back to the 'old way' of vessel measurement.
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    Don't get me started on tonnage frames.

    I may be "wrong," but if you work on big Osv's you can get the "large osv endorsement" which is 6,000 tons ITC...work on one of those over 3000, and there ya go. You'd be wise to request an endorsement for the 3000 ITC osv license with the 1600, just to have it if nothing else.

    This is a subject of controversy of course where just a couple companies got a special license invented for them, and whether or not it is accepted internationally opens an entire can of worms on here.

    11.903 (c) (10) 11.205
    STCW A-II/1 for reference....
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    Quote Originally Posted by cappy208
    This is a very confusing topic. Around 1965 or so The Coast Guard came up with the gross tonnage rules Concerning the measurement of vessels tonnage. What used to be a very straightforward method of measuring the tonnage of a vessel was simple. The architect would simply determine how many cubic feet of water your vessel displaced divided by 100 ft. and that would be the tonnage of the vessel.

    Then along came the architects. I don't know how or why this happened. A new formula was made to measure boats called admeasuring and basically they changed the formula the way the numbers would be calculated. Almost any vessel you've been on you seen evidence of the doors between passageways that are bolted onto a flat plate which is bolted on to a bulkhead. bulkhead doors which are watertight doors which go outside are bolted onto bulkheads. This is how the entire US measuring system was followed until recently.

    I am not certain how it happened, But I believe it started with the Panama Canal. The Tariff to go to the canal is based upon vessel tonnage. The canal realize that these tonnages that the vessels were reporting werent the actual tonnages of the vessels, they were this manipulated tonnage. The Panama Canal wanted their full price from everyone.
    So now, to bring the US into parity with the rest of the world we are ( slowly, grudgingly) being dragged back to the 'old way' of vessel measurement.
    I think US flag migration to ITC only admeasurement is based on the large OSVs built for the large GOM operators. They lobby to have the definition of a OSV set at not more than 500 GRT or 6000 GT ITC, make up a category of license to crew such vessel (Master, Mate, CE, Asst Eng of Offshore Supply Vessels of not more than 6000 GT ITC), build such vessels and admeasure them under the ITC so they may have a unlimited size vessel crewed on their terms. With regards to them Panama Canal, to the best of my knowledge all unlimited vessels are measured for a Panama Canal tonnage and Suez Canal tonnage which the canal fees will be based on. I am not sure if in some cases limited tonnage vessels would be issued those tonnages as well. It sure would be nice if we could just go the ITC route to bring us into parity with the rest of the world for licensing and vessel documentation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by z-drive
    Don't get me started on tonnage frames.

    I may be "wrong," but if you work on big Osv's you can get the "large osv endorsement" which is 6,000 tons ITC...work on one of those over 3000, and there ya go. You'd be wise to request an endorsement for the 3000 ITC osv license with the 1600, just to have it if nothing else.

    This is a subject of controversy of course where just a couple companies got a special license invented for them, and whether or not it is accepted internationally opens an entire can of worms on here.

    11.903 (c) (10) 11.205
    STCW A-II/1 for reference....
    You don't need to request 3000 ITC OSV with the 1600 because it will already have a unrestricted 3000 ITC attached to it. You can request a Master 3000 ITC OSV with a Master 500 GRT. The large OSV endorsement it is a extension of your 1600 ton Master or 3000 ITC OSV. So theoretically someone with a 500 Master can get the large OSV endorsement as well as long as they have the 3000 ITC OSV. Complete the USCG approved program for your company (assessments and sea time) and BAM! 6000 ITC OSV Master.
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    I always wondered how many 6000 ITC licenses are being produced. Do companys have an ongoing program or is it highly selective?
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    Quote Originally Posted by CurryAK View Post
    I always wondered how many 6000 ITC licenses are being produced. Do companys have an ongoing program or is it highly selective?
    Our company is trying to produce as many as they can, asap. Everyone is encouraged, no, rather expected to get their 6000.
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    Default Re: I Just Don't Understand ITC Tonnage

    Ok so another question about ITC/GRT licenses. Say your vessel is measured both ways on the COD. Can you legally operate this vessel with a 200 GRT, 500 ITC license?
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    Default Re: I Just Don't Understand ITC Tonnage

    The measurement of vessel tonnage is as old as vessels themselves. It has been a way to tax vessels based on their capacity to carry cargo, and is a measurement of space. Historically, there have been many different systems and those have been subject to many different interpretations by tonnage admeasurers (often the ones with the largest house in port). Gross Tonnage was generally meant to be the amount of space inside a vessel. Net Tonnage was the difference between Gross Tonnage and the Exempted Spaces. Net Tonnage, then, was the space that could be untilized to carry cargo. Besides national tonnage admeasurement, there are also Canal schemes, such as the Panama Canal Tonnage. Again, this is solely for the raising of revenue.

    Things like tonnage doors and tonnage floors were used to increase net tonnage by decreasing spaces that could theoretically be used to carry cargo. Tonnage doors supposed to be non water tight (which is why I always get a kick out of seeing a watertight hatch in a tonnage door) to discourage the carriage of cargo in a certain space. Tonnage floors are used to decrease the depth of a space by raising the theoritical bottom, decreasing the potential carrying space.

    Think about those older supply vessels. The hatch to the back deck is almost aways in a tonnage door, making the forecastle technically a non watertight enclosure. That is why you see a watertight door on the companionway leading to the engine room tunnel.

    The ITC was brought about to supercede the different national admeasurement schemes. It replace the actual measurement of space with a coefficient. It also elimimates the use of tonnage doors, floors or other tricks. This is why a Vessel that has both schemes also has wildly differing tonnage values, between domestic and ITC. I have always felt that licensing would be better based on displacement/horsepower than tonnage.
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