The maritime industry is one of the largest sectors of employment in the world. But, have you ever wondered what a maritime officer actually does and what is the hierarchy they follow on merchant ships? This article will shed some light on this aspect and help enlighten our readers.
The merchant navy is divided into three sections; bridge or deck, engine section, and radio communications section. Now, let’s move onto the merchant navy ranks and functions.
Bridge or Deck
The king of the ship and one that has the highest authority is the master captain, who is found in this section of the ship. The master captain is responsible for all the directions and ultimately the safety of the crew. The master captain has several charges under him that come in the next step of the hierarchy and are known as Bridge Officers.
The bridge offers are further divided into three ranks:
The First Officer
The Second Officer
The Second Officer is responsible for the route calculations as per the orders of the captain and nautical charts and publications.
The Third Officer
Following the hierarchal command, the Third Officer takes tasks from the first officer along with fulfilling navigation duties.
The Engine Room
The next section of the ship is the engine room, this is the heart of the ship and contains all devices and systems that are important for the operation of the ship- it keeps the ship moving, like the heart of the human body.
The Chief Engineer
The Chief Engineer is responsible for the maintenance and the proper functioning of the systems of the ship. He is responsible for ensuring the perfect health of the engine and that it works like a well-oiled machine. He has a team consisting of three other officers who perform 4-hour watches and activities. The Chief Engineer is the second highest ranked official on a ship. In case the Captain is incapacitated to perform his duties, the Chief Engineer asumes command of the ship.
The section of the ship is responsible for all external communication.
Radio Electronic Officer
This Radio Electronic Officer is responsible for communicating with the outside world to notify commercial, private and social operations. Today, usually this role is assumed by the ETO or a Bridge Officer.
Second in Command
The second in command is responsible for ensuring that there is no break in this external communication especially when the electronic officer is away.
Both officers should be aware of the global relief system as a hazardous situation may arise and should communicate easily.
Merchant Navy Jobs
The merchant navy jobs are not limited to the sections of the ship and there are many officers that are cogs in the wheel and without them, the proper functioning of the ship is not possible.
Boatswain / Bosun
The Pilot gives instructions to the commander in risky situations due to collisions.
The Purser manages all the documentation related to the cargo and the crew.
Interested in a Career at Sea?
All crew requires specialty certificates and professional qualifications. For more information visit https://www.nauticjobs.com/.