General Cargo Ships.
General Cargo Ships are the most numbered ships operating world wide. They carry all types of goods and materials. Mostly they are equipped with cargo handling gears to load and discharge in any port. They have cargo holds to store cargo with water tight covers. And they may carry deck cargo too. They are in different sizes and the larger ones operate as "Ocean Going" while the smaller ones operate as "Costal Ships". There are normally called as M/V which means Motor vessel.
These type of ships have three departments to work as Deck, Engine Room and Galley. Tankers are too cargo ships.
General cargo ships are better place for the new cadet officers and crew members to start their seaman life at sea. They can start as deck cadet officers or engine room cadet officers according to their education, while new crew members can start as general helper in deck, engine room or in galley.
General cargo ships are to be cleaned each time it discharge its cargo completely and to be ready for the inspection to load the next cargo. The ship owners must pay hold cleaning extra money to the deck crew. This money may vary according to the cargo classification. Dangerous or hazardous cargo allows the deck crew to get more money. Many ship masters along with the company or to the instruction from the company reduce the total amount which is to be paid to the crew. If the ship belongs to a good flag registry then there may be the rate available in the collective agreement book for each cargo.
If there is any lashing and securing of cargo is required on the ship's deck then the deck crews are entitled for extra payment from the owners. It is very dangerous to lash wood logs on the deck using the lashing chains through the help of the chain blocks. But the payment is very high.
The newer ships are coming with fully automated engine rooms which also called as UMS. While at the port the mooring winches can adjust the tension of the ropes automatically thus reducing the work loads of the crew members far from the old days.
Now a day the crew members of the ships are required and trained to protect the environment. Failure to protect the environment will end up in heavy fine or imprison or both for the default seaman.
Those who want to work on this vessels must have the following things as per the IMO.
- A valid travel document
- Seamn Registration from their country of origin
- English knowledge to communicate with others.
- Necessary valid licences to carry thier duties.(Officers)
Certificates for the following short courses.
- First Aid At Sea.
- Fire Fighting.
- Advanced Fire Fighting.
- Personal Safety and Social Responsibility. (PSSR) with Survival Techniques.
- Crowd Management
Officers must posses advanced course certificates for the above.
The Officers and crew must be engage in a six month period contact with the shipping company or it's agents, and it can be extended.
Travelling to and from the vessel will be freely assisted by the shipping company for the officers and crew.