Section 510 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2017 removed, at the statutory level, the requirement for mariners to renew their Radar Endorsement every five years. Implementation of this change requires the development of specific regulations by the Coast Guard. The proposed regulations were submitted for public review June 11, 2018 and read as follows:
. . . an active mariner who serves in a relevant position for 1 year in the previous 5 years using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes on vessels equipped with radar, or has served as a qualified instructor for a Coast Guard-approved radar course at least twice within the past 5 years, would not be required to complete a Coast Guard-approved radar refresher or re-certification course in order to renew his or her radar observer endorsement. This proposed rule would not change the existing requirements for mariners seeking an original radar observer endorsement or mariners who do not have either 1 year of relevant sea service on board radar-equipped vessels in the previous 5 years or service as a qualified instructor for a Coast Guard-approved radar course at least twice within the past 5 years.
The comment period ended July 11, 2018. Until such time as the new regulations take effect, if they do, or get tweaked, if they do, affected mariners are required to hold a valid (and renewed) Radar endorsement. Because of the impending changes, we will offer Radar Renewals to mariners on an as needed basis. Call the School (206.667.9377) or email us to arrange for a renewal.
Note: In the regulatory process described below, at this stage (9/20/18) we are in the third column somewhere between the third and fourth boxes.
Meanwhile, here is a Radar Plotting Review.
Update 1/5/2019: We will continue to offer Radar Renewals on Tuesdays and Thursdays until the Coast Guard publishes the new policy. The Government Shutdown may postpone implementation even further.