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Old 19 January 2004, 18:11   #1
Country: UK - Wales
Town: St Davids
Boat name: 6 vessels -various
Make: Quinquari/Humber
Length: 10m +
Engine: Twin ETEC200s
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Mca Codes Plus ?

Sorry to start a new thread on a well answered one but it did seem to move from the point.

Paul G in his synopsis of MCA Cats was quite accurate. From there the thread went downhill to include looking at ways of sneeking into CAT3 or even whether Codes are applicable.

As operators of Voyages Of Discovery and Thousand Islands we look at many issues as we undertake 50 sailings a day peak and carry 20,000 people a year. As such not only do we look at the codes but also the ethics of operations vs commercial vs lives.

On this urge the points

1. Coding is the legal requirement - do not bend it.
2. It does not account for a true demonstration of experience which could be tested in court. ( We expect a minimum of 2 years on board training before any "skipper" can become a master with us - we have RNLI coxswains, tanker masters etc etc but they must still do their training irrespective of official tacket).

3. Forget insurance if the MCA find a fault. Insurance is a back up, not your protection.

4. Think about all those other little points (drink and drug testing, training manuals, daily checking of 'M' Notices, etc etc).

And above all ...

If you want to bend it, get a way with something with the surveyor etc then if it goes wrong it WILL be manslaugter. The codes were accelerated due to the Marchoness but also due to our common need to blame someone. Insurance is not the point,it is more whether you have the morals to buck the system and someones life.

To conclude you either become a coded operator or not - there are no inbetweens.

Cheers as always


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Old 20 January 2004, 01:59   #2
Paul Glatzel's Avatar
Country: UK - England
Town: Poole
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I agree with everything that you say, the points are well made.

The only observation i would make is regarding the reference to "sneeking into CAT3". It was me that made the observation that there are ways of getting a RIB coded to CAT 3 without some form of wheelhouse type structure that seemed historically to be the requirement. This is of particular interest to some RYA Training Centres as it will allow those of us to wish to move beyond our 3 mile NDP code (eg i can't run a nightex from Poole to the Solent in perfect conditions currently) and improve the offering we are making/training giving. Achieving such coding (which implicitly the MCA are aware of and happy with) doesn't alter my utter focus to safety/compliance with all aspects of the codes - whereas the “sneeking into cat 3” does rather tend to imply otherwise.

Overall though I’m with you that in respect of coding its very much all or nothing. Ultimately if something ever did go wrong I would have wanted to have done everything ‘right’ rather than need to reconcile to why I choose to take my own path rather than the one clearly mapped out by the codes.



Paul Glatzel
Powerboat Training UK, Poole & Lymington & Aquasafe Powerboat School, Lymington,
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Old 20 January 2004, 03:01   #3
Pete7's Avatar
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John, good point well made, perhaps we did look at the previous coding post the wrong way. Certainly when I had Old Spice coded, Duncan surveyor made several very good recommendations, the standard was fair but strict and quite rightly, afterall it might be your wife or children stepping on board one of these boats in the future.

By the way I am happy to recommend Duncan "Searider" as a surveyor. Makes a nice change to find a surveyor who not only knows what he is talking about but actually has his own rib. Wish the same could be said for a couple of other surveyors I have dealt with over the years.

Duncan is available through:

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Old 20 January 2004, 15:45   #4
Country: UK - Scotland
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Agree Totally

quinquarimarine - John

Agree totally with what you are saying and it could not be put better.

To have a 'commercial' and safe operation the coding is a must.... and no 2 ways about it.

Pete F
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