In Policy Letter 04-18, the Coast Guard clarifies a requirement that technically became effective March 24, 2014.  Prior to that date, certain engineering officer endorsements allowed the holder to act as a Qualified Member of the Engine Department (QMED) even though the endorsement was not shown on the credential.  Per Policy Letter 04-18, this is no longer the case.  Because of this change, the Coast Guard is offering an opportunity to those affected officers to get the QMED endorsed on their current credential without being required to take an examination.

Engineering officers holding the following endorsements valid for over 2,000 horsepower may exercise this option.

  1. Chief Engineer (46 CFR 11.510);
  2. First Assistant Engineer (46 CFR 11.512);
  3. Second Assistant Engineer (46 CFR 11.514)
  4. Third Assistant Engineer (46 CFR 11.516);
  5. Chief Engineer (Limited) (46 CFR 11.518);
  6. Assistant Engineer (Limited) (46 CFR 11.522);
  7. Designated Duty Engineer Unlimited Propulsion Power (46 CFR 11.524(b)(1));
  8. Designated Duty Engineer Less Than 4,000 Horsepower (46 CFR 11.524(b)(2)) (note the DDE 1,000 does not qualify)
  9. Chief Engineer (MODU) (46 CFR 11.542);
  10. Assistant Engineer (MODU) (46 CFR 11.544);
  11. Chief Engineer (OSV) (46 CFR 11.553); and
  12. Assistant Engineer (OSV) (46 CFR 11.555).

NMC provided us with the following clarification:
“After March 24, 2019, mariners serving as QMED should hold the appropriate QMED endorsement.  Until December 31, 2019, engineering officers endorsed for inspected vessels of more than 2,000 HP [see list above] who do not hold a QMED endorsement may continue to serve as a QMED if they have applied for the QMED endorsement before March 24, 2019.”

It is imperative then that mariners wishing to get the QMED without testing and holding one (or more) of the 12 licenses listed above apply for the QMED before 3/24/2019.  We do not know if this deadline will be extended because of the Government Shutdown.