The deckhand responsibilities include assisting on deck to handle towlines (large- diameter ropes) and wire (heavy cable) and associated working gear such as heavy chains and shackles. The mission of the tug is to shift barges between terminals and dock and undock ships. The deckhand is required to assist in making and breaking tow which includes working with heavy gear including shackles, chains, wire straps and lines. The gear is awkward to handle. Activities on deck involve working closely with and around very powerful and noisy machinery. Heavy strains are placed on machinery and gear. The work can be hazardous if the deckhand does not take note of the necessary precautions and is not focused on the task at hand. Cooking duties include: Preparing family-style meals for crew members and occasional guests of the vessel. Prices and requisitions food stuffs and cleaning supplies within established budgets. The cook prepares a meal plan based on the duration of the voyage that includes providing a balanced diet and good variety.
The deckhand must possess good seamanship skills including the ability to tie knots, splice line and wire and handle large diameter lines. These skills require the use of hand tools such as marlin spikes and fids. Line throwing is an important decking skill. Tow building techniques, securing boats and barges and general line handling working around cleats and bitts is essential. Must be familiar with and observe proper safety practices, procedures and routines. Must be familiar with emergency procedures including fire, man overboard, abandon ship and pollution response. One also may be required to serve as lookout at times when the vessel is navigating in reduced visibility. The following duties are performed on a weekly basis:
Must be able to read, interpret, follow and develop recipes. Should be creative and able to improvise when necessary. Must be knowledgeable of the principles, uses and techniques involved in measuring, proportioning, testing, and the storage involved in food preparation including cooking and storage temperatures, and cooking time. Breakfast, lunch and supper are served per day. Responsible for general housekeeping of galley and common areas and including washing dishes, sweeping, mopping, scrubbing, stocking shelves, and cleaning and defrosting refrigerators and freezers.
High School Diploma is required. Also must have a marine operations background; being familiar with shipyards, tugs, and barges. Necessary experience is dependent upon the individual, prefer minimum of 5 years sea-going experience on towing vessels.
Schedule: The normal work schedule is between 30-60 days on and off depending on the job. Work shifts (watches) are six hours on watch and six hours off and so on during each day.