Engineering officers’ demand is rapidly outstripping the availability of qualified engineers to manage the maintenance of modern vessels, which are powered by an increasingly sophisticated range of electrical, electronic and engineering equipment.
The engineering department is responsible for the safety, performance and efficiency of the vessel’s machinery. It is their job to maintain the mechanical and electrical operations, ensure robust maintenance schedules are implemented and troubleshoot problems efficiently.
Engineering officers Skills and attributes
Technically adept and versatile with the ability to take on a variety of different roles, from the engine room to hotel services. A wide knowledge of vessel systems from the main engines to refrigeration units, generators and air conditioning units.
Marine engineering officers are responsible for the maintenance and operation of the ship’s main propulsion machinery and auxiliary plant, including deck machinery, air conditioning plants, refrigeration plants, and domestic and electrical services. Depending on the type of ship and operational circumstances, engineer officers will be required to keep watches in the ship’s engine room.
The Chief Engineer Officer is in charge of the department and is responsible to the ship’s Master for its efficient operation. Whilst the law demands that only one person can be in overall command of the ship and by tradition that person is the Master, the Chief Engineer Officer’s status and salary is very similar to that enjoyed by the Master
Marine Electro-Technical Officers (METOs)
These specialist officers work within the engineering department where they take particular responsibility for the maintenance of on board control engineering and electronic systems including propulsion control, radio communications and electronic navigation aids
Marine electro-technical officers (METOs) should have the opportunity to develop their careers along a professional electrical engineering path, perhaps leading to the rank of Chief Electro-Technical Officer, Chief Technical Officer or Electrical Superintendent (company dependent)