What does it mean to be a Merchant Navy Deck Officer? Well, as a deck officer, you would be a vital member of the crew on board a vessel. Performing the role of navigation officer means you’ll be a key member of the ship’s management team, with sophisticated and expensive vessels, valuable cargo or passengers in your charge…it’s a big responsibility.
While on duty at sea, it will be down to you to make decisions on steering and maneuvering the ship, controlling navigation and communications. In port, you’ll be responsible for cargo handling and ship stability.
You will also be heavily involved in the day to day safety of the vessel. All crew needs to work as a team to maintain the ship and its equipment at optimum efficiency.
This is a diverse role and every day is different, with your ultimate goal to become the Master or Captain of your own vessel.
You’ll be ranked according to your experience and qualifications and with each grade comes more responsibilities. As an Officer Cadet you will start at the bottom and work your way up:
- Captain – overall charge of the vessel and safety of crew, passengers and cargo. Responsible for legal and commercial matters
- Chief Officer – day to day management of all deck crew. Overseeing deck operations and maintenance, cargo handling and storage and watch keeping duties
- Second Officer – responsible for voyage planning and carrying out watch keeping duties
- Junior/Third Officer – responsible for maintenance of life saving equipment and firefighting appliances. Assisting senior officers in day to day operations and carrying out watch keeping duties
If that doesn’t sound like you there are other Merchant Navy careers to choose from.